Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

WHO's 60 Years and the Global Health Histories Initiative

Academic journal article Bulletin of the World Health Organization

WHO's 60 Years and the Global Health Histories Initiative

Article excerpt

Twenty African scholars, historians of medicine and public health leaders joined a debate in Nairobi on the impact decolonization and the end of the Cold War have had on health in Africa. The debate from 6 to 8 February was part of the Global Health Histories initiative and one of a series of events leading up to WHO's 60th anniversary on 7 April 2008.

WHO launched the Global Health Histories initiative in 2005 in recognition of the importance of the history of public health.

As part of this initiative, WHO plans to publish a history of global health over the last 60 years, in 2008. The book will cover the major health events since WHO was founded in 1948 and WHO's role in them. It will also look at the development of public health during decolonization, the Cold War and globalization.

To date, WHO has published official histories of its first two decades and next year plans to publish a history of the third covering the pivotal years of the 1970s.

The Global Health Histories initiative includes an oral history project. Retired WHO staff have been recording and transcribing interviews with leading WHO figures recalling some of the world's most important health events. …

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