World Health Day, the key to global wellness
4 months and 9 days till World Health Day! Take care of your body and soul!
World Health Day, celebrated on April 7th annually, has a tremendous importance for the populations’ well-being: it helped the eradication of smallpox, almost the eradication of polio and it also contributed to the cure of AIDS giving visibility to those illnesses, supporting research, and giving funds. Aren’t these actions simply amazing and k...
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The importance of World Health Day and three of its most relevant symbols: hearts, planet Earth and stethoscopes
The most important organ that regulates blood pressure
The first World Health day symbol we are going to talk about is the heart. This organ has been traditionally linked to life itself: It pumps blood and it’s the key element of the circulatory system. We already know about its importance for our bodies, as one cannot live without a heart, but there is a second reason to use hearts as symbols related to health. Cardiovascular diseases, also known as CVD, have to do with high mortality rates and they correspond with 30% of deaths in the World. It’s worth paying attention to these conditions by using this organ as a reminder of taking good care of our health in order to live many, many years!
Discover more about planet Earth and its symbolism with Health Day
One of the symbols linked to this day is the Earth, our planet, but why? Firstly, because the aim of this day is to highlight the importance of global health annually. It also raises awareness on health-related issues, diseases and the like. Second, planet Earth as a symbol also enhances the meaning of conforming a community to fight against pandemics and ailments such as cancer, ebola and even Covid-19. Third, it is a way to strengthen the connection between different countries to reach common goals and to look for different cures and treatments for the most dangerous diseases in the World.
Stethoscope: the tool that helped saving millions of lives
The stethoscope dates back to the 19th century, and it was a device to check the heart without physical contact. Today, it’s used to diagnose by listening to internal organs such as the heart, lungs and the intestines. It was a major step in medicine as it allowed diagnosing internally using a non-invasive procedure, something that didn’t happen prior to its invention. It’s no wonder that this medical instrument is one of the World Health Day symbols, as it has been traditionally associated with medical professionals. According to some scholars, when a physician wears a stethoscope, he or she is seen as more trustworthy!
World Health Day Color Palette
Prussian blue, a color that saves lives and helps against radiation poisoning
Prussian blue is also known by other names like Berlin or Paris blue. It is made by oxidizing ferrous ferrocyanide salts, creating a characteristic dark blue pigment. Prussian blue needed to be part of the World Health Day color palette: it’s contained on the World Health Organization’s List of Essential Medicines, as iit can help remove radioactive cesium and thallium after a radiation exposure. If you are not surprised by discovering the healing effects of Prussian blue yet, there is a theory of the creation of this color that will amaze you. Supposedly, Johann Jacob Diesbach, a paint maker, created Prussian blue accidentally. He intended to produce a red cochineal dye. He used potash, ferric sulfate and dried cochineal… but he tainted the potash with blood! This mixture reacted and it turned blue!
Calmness and serenity contained in a color: dark cyan
Dark cyan is a cool shade that resembles color teal. Dark cyan has a calming effect. You can easily associate this tint with calm seas, oceans, and lakes. It can also be spotted as part of the lovely pattern of peacock feathers. It’s a color that you can find in nature, so it is the hue of serenity. This tint is great for a World Health day color palette. It exudes peacefulness, calmness, and tranquility. It also represents patience, which is very much appreciated when recovering from any illness. This tranquility is also perfect for hospitals and clinics, as it is able to help patients psychologically speaking.
Powder blue, the calmness and honesty of a pale color
Powder blue is the color of copper carbonate. This pigment has several uses; mainly, it is employed to create pigments for paints, varnishes, and for creating other hues such as mountain green, Paris green, or verditer. This compound is also used as a wood preservative and fertilizer. It’s a very soft color, a pale blue that, according to color psychology, has a calming effect. This tint aso represents protection, confidence, honesty, and security. In addition, this hue is also associated with reliability and trustworthiness, attributes that are key for any physician, surgeon, or any other health professional.
Bittersweet: the color of the berries of American and British berries
Bittersweet is a reddish orange tone. This term appears as a color name in 1892 for the first time. It was named after the berries of the American bittersweet, which display this appealing hue. It’s a vine found in the eastern part of North America, and they also resemble the color of the bittersweet nightshade, a plant from Great Britain. This reddish orange tone is related to medicine: the Cherokee, Lenape, the Oglala and other indigenous peoples used the American bittersweet to treat tuberculosis, burns, skin conditions, and many more. Psychologically speaking, this tint stimulates, encourages, and uplifts. Isn’t it a great color to celebrate World Health Day?
Orange tart, the color of passion, life, and emergencies
Orange tart is a beautiful light red shade. It is a sophisticated tone that has a fun touch. It is full of life, passion, and energy. As happens with other reddish hues, this shade expresses a feeling of urgency and emergency. Applied to the medical arena, it is the color that represents medical emergencies: the design of ambulances, medical emergency crash carts, first aid kits, or emergency signals often include details in orange tart. The symbol of medicine, the caduceus, often appears in a bright orange tart hue too. Add some vitality to your World Health Day designs with a taste of orange tart!
World Health Day and World Health Organization: taking care of public health and monitoring public risks since the 40s
To understand the history of World Health Day, first we need to know about the World Health Organization, also known as WHO. It is an agency that depends on the control of the United Nations and its main concern is, of course, public health. This organization has several targets, as you can imagine. For example, they are in favor of universal health care coverage. They also deal with public health risks and stand up for universal well-being. Doesn’t this sound impressive to you? Let’s discover the most important milestones in the creation of World Health Day and some achievements related to this day!
The constitution of the World Health Organization
The beginning of a new (health) era
World Health Day cannot be understood unless we talk about the creation of one of the most important associations, the World Health Organization. Let’s begin with a little bit of history here. At the United Nations Conference in 1945, different countries agreed on the need for an international health organization. This dream became true in July 1946, when a total of 61 countries signed a treatise to conform the World Health organization. However, the first meeting of the WHO (World Health Organization) took place later, in 1948.
The First World Health Assembly
One of the greatest milestones in public health history
The constitution of the World Health Organization took place during the summer of 1948. Dr. Stampar was elected president for a year, and the executive board was also constituted. In addition, Geneva was chosen as the location for its headquarters. This first assembly focused on six of the major health issues in the World: nutrition, malaria, tuberculosis, venereal diseases, maternal and child health and environmental sanitation. They also took care of other problems, such as other viruses and parasitic diseases, together with mental health.
Changing the date
The Establishment of the World Health Day on April 7th
At the beginning, the WHO (World Health Organization) held its very first assembly on July 22th, but they decided to change it to the 7th of April in 1949. This new date had effect from 1950. The change was quite successful and it remained as the official World Health Day date since that year. The World Health Organization focuses on different public health issues each year, as the WHO brings several global concerns into focus. They have made efforts to eradicate polio, control HIV/AIDS, malaria or tuberculosis. They also deal with food security, occupational health, drugs, cancer…
New year, new goals
Solving different public health issues each year
1950 was an important year, as one of the greatest achievements of that very year was a tuberculosis inoculation using the bacillus Calmette-Guérin vaccine. Every single year, the priorities and goals change. Let’s explore a few of them throughout the years: the WHO proposed a malaria eradication programme in 1955. Three years later, in 1958, they intended to eradicate smallpox. The International Agency for Research in Cancer was created in 1965. In 2006, the WHO established a plan against the AIDS pandemic, and they also helped control the COVID-19 outbreak in 2020.