Home | WHPA Press Releases | The World Health Professions Alliance urges Taiwan’s acceptance to the WHO as an observer

World Medical Association [WMA]
International Council of Nurses (ICN)
International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP)


World Health Professions Alliance (WHPA)

The World Health Professions Alliance urges Taiwan’s
acceptance to the WHO as an observer


Geneva, 27 May 2003 - The outbreak of SARS in Asia and its rapid spread around the globe over the past two months has presented serious global public health challenges.  The World Health Organization (WHO) Global Outbreak Alert and Response Network has proved its value in establishing a quick control of the spread of the virus.  However, as is seen in the case of China and Taiwan, this network has also demonstrated the need for a complete and open communication system for it to work effectively.

It is therefore essential that all competent health authorities, territories, and regions or affected areas have access to WHO and can report to that body in an effective and timely manner.  Measures taken as a consequence of WHO's Outbreak Alert show that early detection is very important.

The World Health Professions Alliance, consisting of the International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP), the World Medical Association (WMA) and the International Council of Nurses (ICN) – all professional NGOs in an official relationship with the WHO - express their serious concern regarding the ability of Taiwan to manage epidemics like SARS without direct access to WHO.  Therefore the WHPA strongly supports observer status for Taiwan at WHO.




The World Health Professions Alliance brings together medicine, nursing and pharmacy through their representative international organisations, International Council of Nurses (ICN), International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) and the World Medical Association (WMA) and represents more than 20 million health professionals worldwide.


  • The International Council of Nurses (ICN) is a federation of 125 national nurses' associations representing the millions of nurses worldwide.  Operated by nurses for nurses since 1899, ICN is the international voice of nursing and works to ensure quality care for all and sound health policies globally.

  • The International Pharmaceutical Federation (FIP) is the worldwide federation of national associations of pharmacists and pharmaceutical scientists. Pharmacists are health care professionals dedicated to improving access to and value of appropriate medicine use worldwide.   

  • The World Medical Association (WMA) is a global federation of national medical associations, representing the millions of physicians worldwide.  Acting on behalf of physicians and patients, the WMA endeavours to achieve the highest possible standards of medical science, education, ethics and health care for all people.


For further information contact Linda Carrier-Walker Tel :  +41 22  908 0100;
fax :   +41 22  908 0101;  email:  ; Web site  www.icn.ch 

PR/03 #19


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