GLOBAL – The World Health Organization (WHO) has embarked on its inaugural Investment Round, aiming to revolutionize its funding mechanisms and ensure sustainability in an increasingly complex global landscape.

The investment is in response to the evolving challenges of climate change, mass migration, pandemic threats, and geopolitical instabilities.

The initiative unveiled on the eve of the Seventy-Seventh World Health Assembly, marks the commencement of a year-long campaign jointly facilitated by member countries. 

WHO will invite Member States and other stakeholders to contribute to its strategic plan for 2025 to 2028 during this period, Culminating in a pivotal pledging event hosted by Brazil during the G20 Leaders’ Summit in November.

Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General,  highlighted the significance of this endeavor, stating, “It’s about ensuring WHO is fully funded and improving the quality of the funding we receive. Much of the funding we receive is unpredictable, reactive, and tightly defined. The Investment Round aims to change that, by generating funding that is more flexible, predictable, and resilient.”

Central to this initiative is WHO’s ambitious third investment case, scheduled for launch at the Health Assembly. 

It estimates that full funding of the strategy, known as the Fourteenth General Programme of Work (GPW 14), could potentially save 40 million lives between 2025 and 2028.

The Investment Round has garnered significant support from key stakeholders. 

In its capacity as the G20 presidency, Brazil has pledged to host high-level events, leveraging the G20 platform to bolster the initiative. 

Qatar has already committed US$4 million in flexible funds, emphasizing the importance of investing in global health.

France, Germany, and Norway have stepped forward to serve as co-hosts, underlining the imperative for enhanced and sustainable funding mechanisms for WHO. 

Frédéric Valletoux, France’s Minister Delegate in charge of Health and Prevention, emphasized WHO’s pivotal role in global health governance, while Norway’s Health Minister, Jan Christian Vestre, stressed the need for more predictable and flexible funding mechanisms.

Further bolstering the initiative, statements of support have poured in from various quarters.

 Notable among them is Barbados Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley, who emphasized the moral imperative of adequately funding global health initiatives, particularly for Small Island Developing States.

The Health for All Film Festival at WHO also acclaimed the Investment Round, awarding prizes to winners.

The launch event was enriched by performances from renowned artists, further underscoring the importance and urgency of the initiative.

The WHO Executive Board approved the Investment Round in January, acknowledging the widening gap between the organization’s mandates and funding sources. 

Member States have committed to increasing their assessed contributions, aiming to cover 50% of WHO’s base budget by 2030.

For all the latest healthcare industry news from Africa and the World, subscribe to our NEWSLETTER, and YouTube Channel, follow us on Twitter and LinkedIn, and like us on Facebook