By Admin | 01 Apr 2022

World Health Day 2022

April 7th marks the World Health Organization’s annual World Health Day, which in 2022 brings a call to develop a movement to create societies focused on well-being.


World Health Day is one of the world’s oldest health awareness days. Taking place annually on April 7th, the first World Health Day took place in 1950. This specific date was chosen to mark the World Health Organization's (WHO) establishment on April 7th, 1948.

What is the purpose of World Health Day?

While the WHO is involved with organising and promoting several condition-specific health awareness events, it uses World Health Day to draw global attention to broader issues. The themes chosen by the WHO for World Health Day aren't always directly related to health conditions and healthcare issues. For example, 2004's World Health Day aimed to promote road safety. In 2010, the event aimed to raise awareness of the impact of global urbanisation on general health.

Global governments, non-governmental organisations, and non-profits like the Global Health Council widely participate in World Health Day in addition to engaging with each year’s theme and associated awareness events.

What is the theme of World Health Day 2022?

In 2022, World Health Day has a theme of “our planet, our health,” with a call to focus more on health and well-being and to create “well-being societies.”

This year’s theme is inspired by the world we live in and the impact of environmental factors on health outcomes. For example, in the past two years, we've seen in stark terms the link between environmental factors and COVID-19 outcomes. The environment is also increasingly recognised as a risk factor for some cancers and heart disease.

Overall, the WHO estimates that more than 13 million global annual deaths are due to avoidable environment-linked causes.

Underpinning the WHO's messaging for World Health Day 2022 is the global climate crisis. The WHO calls this "the single biggest health threat facing humanity" and adds that "the climate crisis is also a health crisis."

Key statistics highlighted by the WHO include:

  • Over 90% of the global population breathes unhealthy air due to the burning of fossil fuels.
  • Global warming means mosquitoes now spread diseases like malaria farther afield, faster than ever.
  • Extreme weather events and water scarcity create an increased risk to global health.

As with last year's World Health Day, the WHO is also using this event to bring attention to its ongoing campaign for universal healthcare for all citizens.

What action is the WHO calling for on World Health Day 2022?

As ever with such events, the WHO is calling for a range of actions from various people and organisations.

You can view the recommended actions for central governments, corporations, healthcare workers and facilities, and local politicians here.

On an individual level, the WHO recommends that we:

  • Walk or cycle to work at least one day a week, or use public transport.
  • Don’t overheat our homes.
  • Eat fresh groceries from local producers and avoid eating highly processed foods and drinks that may heighten our risk of certain illnesses.
  • Quit smoking.
  • Use recyclable bags and packaging where possible to reduce our plastic usage.

The WHO also mentions air pollution as part of the World Health Day 2022 campaign, and we should always take steps to ensure we're getting as much fresh air as possible. So if you started doing anything to increase air circulation and quality at home and work during the pandemic, keep doing it! Likewise, if you can do things like wear a face covering to minimise your exposure to air pollution when outside in towns and cities, you might wish to do so.

What additional materials are available for World Health Day 2022?

As always, the WHO will be providing materials to help global citizens get involved with World Health Day.

At the time of writing, only two campaign posters were available, but the WHO should continue adding assets in the run-up to World Health Day on April 7th.

You can access the World Health Day 2022 Campaign Toolkit here.

How you can get involved with World Health Day 2022

While World Health Day itself is on April 7th, the event is traditionally the beginning of a campaign spanning the rest of the year, during which that year’s theme will be pushed across numerous events and publications by the WHO.

Indeed, if you visit the WHO’s primary World Health Day awareness page, you’ll see that many new publications have been added in recent months, even stretching back into late 2021!

Another notable feature of World Health Day is that the WHO'S regional organisations usually run their own events and initiatives. So if you visit the WHO website and click the "Countries" menu, you'll be able to find your regional organisation and discover what they've got going on.

The best way to stay up to date with everything associated with World Health Day is to follow the WHO's social media channels and research what the government and non-governmental organisations are doing around the event where you live. You might even organise your own World Health Day event at work or in your local community!