Monday, August 8, 2022

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan to take charge as WHO Executive Board chairman on May 22: Report

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan, who is currently at the forefront of India’s battle against COVID-19, is all set to charge as the chairman of the World Health Organization (WHO) Executive Board on May 22 as per the recent reports. The meeting of the Executive Board will be held on May 22 and comprises of a total of 34 qualified members elected for three-year terms. Reports also reveal that Dr. Harsh Vardhan would succeed Dr. Hiroki Nakatani of Japan, who is currently handling the same position in the 34-member WHO Executive Board.

The proposal to nominate India’s nominee for the board was signed on Tuesday by World Health Assembly as per the reports. Moreover, Dr Harsh Vardhan taking over the post seems to be a formality as the decision of he becoming India’s nominee as WHO’s South-East Asia group was decided last year that India would be elected for a three-year term beginning May.

It is not a full-time assignment as the minister is only required to chair the meeting of the Executive Board. The meets will be held twice a year. The main meeting is usually scheduled in January and the second is in May after the Health Assembly.

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Harsh Vardhan
Harsh Vardhan

The most important functions of the Executive Board is to give effect to the policies and decisions of the Health Assembly, to give advice, suggestion and to facilitate its work. On Monday, Harsh Vardhan while addressing the 73rd World Health Assembly via video-conferencing said that India is leaving no stone unturned in taking necessary steps on time to control the spread of coronavirus. He added that the country has done quite well and will continue to work confidently in the coming months.

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