HealthcarePapers 19(4) April 2021 : 41-46.doi:10.12927/hcpap.2021.26482

Reform, Rather than Discard the WHO

Lisa Forman


Kohler argues that the COVID-19 pandemic has illustrated the weaknesses of the World Health Organization (WHO), and she recommends creating a new “streamlined, nimble and effective institution” (2021: 10) in its stead. I argue that the WHO has a deep institutional history, legal tradition and authority that would be unwise to discard and difficult, if not impossible, to recreate. I argue that strengthening the WHO’s legal and institutional framework offers our best chance at better advancing global health cooperation.



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