World Health Day: History, Theme, & Healthcare Promotion

World Health Day: History, Theme & Healthcare Promotion



  • What led to the inception of World Health Day?

  • How does this year’s theme, ‘My Health, My Right,’ for World Health Day 2024, reflect that healthcare is a fundamental human right?

  • What are the three ways through which health promotion helps individuals?

‘The first wealth is health,’ is a famous saying by Ralph Waldo Emerson. It epitomises the importance of health for a good life. Every year, on April 7, the world celebrates ‘World Health Day.’ But why and how did this day come into being? Let us know more about it through this article that explores the inception of World Health Day, its history, the role of the WHO, and much more.

History Of The World Health Day

The World Health Organisation was established in 1948 to promote health and wellness as a significant component of life. WHO aims to keep the world safe, protect the vulnerable and make people realise the importance of a healthy lifestyle. 

Why is World Health Day observed on 7th April?

Since its inception at the First Health Assembly in 1948 and taking effect in 1950, each year, the celebration aims to create awareness regarding a specific health theme that highlights a key area of concern for the World Health Organisation.

WHO has looked into health issues such as mental health, maternal & child care, and climate change over the past 50 years. Furthermore, the 7th of April 2020 became the day to celebrate the work of nurses & midwives and recognise their work in keeping the world healthy.

What is the theme of World Health Day 2024?

What is the theme of World Health Day

Every year, on the occasion of World Health Day, the World Health Organisation keeps a specific theme. For the year 2024, the theme for the World Health Day is ‘My Health, My Right.’ It establishes that health is a human right, and individuals have the right to access good quality healthcare services and education. Moreover, the organisation organises an art competition where people can showcase the theme through their artwork.

Health Challenges Around The World

As per the ‘India Ageing Report 2023,’ India’s ageing population is expected to double by 2050 to 20.8% of the total population. The ageing demographic will see a surge in age-related health challenges. Furthermore, while the threat of infectious diseases persists, non-communicable diseases such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer, diabetes, and chronic respiratory diseases have become prominent public health concerns. Even in developed countries like America, leading health challenges are also heart disease, cancer, and unintentional injury.

WHO’s Mission

The organisation aims to provide the best possible healthcare facilities and support a range of functions such as:

  • Assume the role of supreme authority in the international healthcare domain.
  • Encourages countries to improve their housing facilities, sanitation, recreation, economic and other areas of environmental hygiene.
  • Furthermore, the organisation advocates for universal healthcare, monitors public health risks, coordinates responses to health emergencies, sets international health standards and guidelines, and collects data on global health issues through their World Health Survey.

Importance Of Health Promotion 

In the ever-changing world, the absence of illness doesn’t mean one is healthy. It now encompasses physical, mental, and social well-being. In this scenario, health promotion becomes a tool that empowers individuals and communities to take matters of well-being into their own hands. Moreover, health promotion emphasises preventing diseases, promoting positive behaviours and encouraging people to adopt healthy lifestyles. Here are three ways health promotion helps individuals have control over their health and make more informed choices.

  •  Prevention

When individuals become educated about risk factors and empower themselves through preventive measures, they help reduce the occurrence of diseases and their associated burdens. It helps save lives and reduces healthcare-related costs.

  • Holistic Care

Health Promotion helps target all aspects of health. It can be mental health awareness, stress management, and social connections. Through health promotion, you can create a balanced and fulfilling life.

  • Foster Personal Responsibility

Health Promotion helps individuals develop a sense of empowerment and lets individuals make informed decisions related to healthier behaviour and lifestyle. It helps them manage chronic conditions in which lifestyle changes can alter the disease progression.

Investment In Healthcare Infrastructure

Imagine going for surgery and having less to no scarring on the body. A few years ago, was that possible? No. However, the recent development and integration of technology in healthcare has aided medical professionals in providing the best medical care. Furthermore, the emergence of artificial intelligence in healthcare helps reshape how doctors diagnose, treat and monitor their patients. 

Medical professionals can make informed choices based on accurate information. It helps save time, reduce costs, and improve medical records management. Additionally, pharma companies are creating new and effective vaccines for other infections and viruses. An example is the Moderna company, which plans on presenting clinical trial data on three vaccines for norovirus, Epstein-Barr Virus, and the virus that causes shingles and chickenpox.

Furthermore, Moderna received funding of $750 million to develop its mRNA flu vaccines. The company is developing other vaccines to prevent respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), a combination shot against flu and COVID-19, a second-generation COVID vaccine and a cancer vaccine co-developed with Merck.

Activities That Happen On World Health Day

On World Health Day, here is a list of activities you can indulge in and convert into a habit.

  • Staying Active

The best way to stay healthy is to be active. You can walk or run, play sports, take the stairs instead of elevators, or walk to the nearest grocery store rather than going by car.

  • Eating Healthy

Giving up junk food might not be possible for everyone, but you can be more conscious about your food choices. Avoid having too much sweets and eat more home-cooked foods rather than ordering food from restaurants regularly.

  • Spread The Word

If you are a fitness freak and are conscious about what you consume, you can always share tips, ideas, and DIYs related to a healthy lifestyle on social media and with your friends. Moreover, you can create videos or reels related to exercises and upload them on social media to motivate others to work out.

Summing Up

World Health Organisation started World Health Day to highlight crucial health issues annually. For 2024, the theme is ‘My Health, My Right.’ It emphasises that healthcare is a fundamental right. WHO is an advocate for universal healthcare and coordinates global health responses. Moreover, investments in healthcare will reshape medical practices and how medical professionals treat their patients.

Must Read:


Leave a Reply