• FILE: This handout picture made available by the World Health Organization (WHO) shows WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus delivering remarks following the speech of US President's chief medical adviser during a World Health Organization (WHO) executive board meeting on 21 January 2021 in Geneva. Picture: AFP

    Calling Omicron 'mild' a mistake, warns WHO

    WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the record numbers of people catching the new variant - which is rapidly out-competing the previously-dominant Delta variant in many countries - meant hospitals were being overwhelmed.

  • World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus talks during a daily press briefing on COVID-19 virus at the WHO headquarters in Geneva on 11 March 2020. Picture: AFP

    WHO warns of COVID variant 'tsunami' as world cases hit record

    The surge, currently worst in Europe, is forcing governments to walk a tightrope between imposing restrictions designed to stop hospitals from becoming overwhelmed and the need to keep economies and societies open two years after the virus first emerged in late 2019.

  • FILE: A photo shows the logo of the World Health Organization (WHO) at their headquarters in Geneva. Picture: AFP

    Omicron risk remains 'very high': WHO

    Omicron is behind rapid virus spikes in several countries, including those where it has already overtaken the previously-dominant Delta variant, the WHO said in its COVID-19 weekly epidemiological update.

  • FILE: This handout picture made available by the World Health Organization (WHO) shows WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus delivering remarks following the speech of US President's chief medical adviser during a World Health Organization (WHO) executive board meeting on 21 January 2021 in Geneva. Picture: AFP

    No country can boost its way out of pandemic: WHO chief

    The UN health agency has long warned that the glaring inequity in access to COVID vaccines, which has left many vulnerable people in poorer nations without a single jab as richer countries roll out broad booster programmes.

  • FILE: A handout photograph taken and released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on 24 May 2021, shows the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus delivering a speech during the 74th World Health Assembly, at the WHO headquarters, in Geneva. Picture: Christopher Black/World Health Organization/AFP

    WHO chief says 2022 must be year 'we end the pandemic'

    WHO director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus insisted it was possible to halt the pandemic but said it would require using all the tools are our disposal, ranging from vaccines to mask-wearing and physical distancing.

  • At least 23 countries have reported cases of the Omicron variant

    the World Health Organization (WHO) said at least 23 countries have reported cases of the Omicron variant and that number is expected to grow. WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus thanked Botswana and South Africa for detecting, sequencing and reporting this variant and condemned the travel bans on South Africa and other southern African nations after the announcement of the discovery.

  • FILE: World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on 3 July 2020 at the WHO headquarters in Geneva. Picture: AFP

    Countries launch WHO pandemic accord talks

    Countries agreed to establish an intergovernmental negotiating body "to draft and negotiate a WHO convention, agreement or other international instrument on pandemic prevention, preparedness and response".

  • FILE: World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. Picture: AFP

    WHO warns COVID variant Omicron risk 'very high'

    The UN health agency said the COVID strain first discovered in southern Africa was a 'highly divergent variant with a high number of mutations... some of which are concerning and may be associated with immune escape potential and higher transmissibility.'

  • Picture: Unsplash

    Poor diets imperilling people and the planet: report

    The Global Nutrition Report (GNR), a yearly survey and analysis of the latest data on nutrition and related health issues, found that 48% of people currently eat either too little or too much - resulting in them being overweight, obese or underweight.

  • FILE: A photo shows the logo of the World Health Organization (WHO) at their headquarters in Geneva. Picture: AFP

    WHO looking forward to oral, nasal COVID vaccines

    The World Health Organization's chief scientist Soumya Swaminathan said there were 129 different candidate vaccines that have got as far as clinical trials while a further 194 are not yet that advanced in their development and are still being worked on in laboratories.

  • Malaria vaccine launched in Kenya: Kenya joins Ghana and Malawi to roll out landmark vaccine in pilot introduction. Picture: @WHO/Twitter

    Africa pins hopes on 'breakthrough' malaria vaccine

    Since 2019, Ghana, Kenya and Malawi have immunised more than 800,000 children under a pilot programme using the RTS,S vaccine. It is the first to show significant protection against the parasite-borne disease, cutting the risk of severe malaria by 30%, trials have shown.

  • FILE: A handout photograph taken and released by the World Health Organisation (WHO) on 24 May 2021, shows the Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus delivering a speech during the 74th World Health Assembly, at the WHO headquarters, in Geneva. Picture: Christopher Black/World Health Organization/AFP

    WHO unveils new team to investigate pandemic

    The group of 26 experts will be charged with producing a new global framework for studies into the origins of emerging pathogens of epidemic and pandemic potential - and their remit includes SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 disease.