Statement from Dr Mhoira Leng to WHO Executive Board 154th Session

WHO Executive Board –

Constituency Statement Agenda Item 14, WHO’s Work in Health Emergencies

Please see PDF: WHO-EB135-IAHPC-Constituency-Statement-on-Agenda-Item-14.

Dr Mhoira Leng, IAHPC delegate
Agenda Item 16 Pillar Two Health and Peace


I am Dr Mhoira Leng, a global palliative care physician representing IAHPC. The WHO Draft Global health and Peace Initiative calls on us to ensure that health programs are “peace and conflict sensitive” and “peace responsive”

Being peace responsive means recognizing our common humanity, the fact that we are all equal and all mortal even if born into very unequal circumstances. All too often dehumanising the other is a barrier to peace.

Health care practitioners commit to serving those in need without judgement. This is articulated in the holistic approach to suffering inherent in pain and palliative care. A medical student in Gaza once described palliative care as ‘humanity until infinity’.

When we respect and promote the dignity of each person, in living and also in dying; when we offer health care that is skilled, as well as empathetic and compassionate; when we support our colleagues who face attack or discrimination, we demonstrate the power of our common humanity, build the conditions for peace, and are peace and conflict sensitive.

I thank you.

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