Draft World Health Assembly Resolution “Accelerating action on global drowning prevention”

The ILS wishes to provide an update on progress that is being made by the World Health Organisation regarding this resolution.

During the WHO Executive Board meeting on 30 January 2023, WHO will review a draft World Health Assembly Resolution titled “Accelerating action on global drowning prevention”.

The draft resolution builds upon the UN Resolution and specifically includes:

  • acceptance of UN General Assembly request for WHO to assist Member States, upon their request, in their drowning prevention efforts
  • acceptance of request for WHO to coordinate actions within the United Nations system among relevant United Nations entities
  • request for Member States (National Governments) to assess the burden of drowning, appoint a national drowning prevention focal point
  • encouragement to develop national programs, with a focus on community, including emergency response planning and linkage with community first aid response and emergency care systems as appropriate
  • encouragement to ensure that policy planning and implementation across sectors such as health, education, environment, climate adaptation planning, rural economic development, fisheries, water transport and disaster risk reduction
  • encouragement to promote drowning prevention through community engagement, public awareness and behavioural change campaigns

The draft resolution also asks WHO to encourage research on the context and risk factors, facilitate adaptation of effective drowning prevention and safe rescue and resuscitation measures. It acknowledges the Global Status Report on Drowning Prevention that is being developed, and signals plans to establish a global alliance for drowning prevention with organizations of the United Nations system, international development partners and nongovernmental organizations.

The draft Resolution is provided below and is proposed by more than sixty countries. (listed) It is probable that an amended draft will be sent for further discussion (approval) at the World Health Assembly in May 2023.

ILS will endeavour to keep you updated on progress and provide advise on how ILS members can encourage (and/or thank) their governments for supporting the draft resolution.