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WHO's mandate

WHO is a specialized agency within the Charter of the United Nations and was established in 1948 by 61 Governments "for the purpose of cooperation among themselves and with others to promote the health for all people". The number of Member States has now grown to 191.

The WHO definition of health

"Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity".

WHO has four main functions:

WHO structure

WHO performs through three principal bodies:


Dated: 23 July 2000