West African Health Community (WAHC)

Communauté ouest africaine pour la santé

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May 1972, with the assistance of the Commonwealth Secretariat, as Commonwealth West African Regional Health Secretariat by the Governments of Gambia, Ghana, Nigeria and Sierra Leone in cooperation with Commonwealth Secretariat. In 1974 Liberia was admitted as full participating member and the title became West African Health Secretariat (WAHS). Present name adopted 25 Oct 1978, when member States signed a Treaty during Assembly of Health Ministers. Superseded 7-9 July 1987, Abuja, on adoption and signing of a Protocol at 10th meeting of Authority of Heads of State and Government of Economic Community of West African States, establishing West African Health Organization (WAHO) as a merger of 2 existing health institutions in the sub-region, WAHC and Coordination and Cooperation Organization for the Control of the Major Endemic Diseases (OCCGE). WAHO took over the activities of the component organizations when establishing protocol was ratified by parliaments of ECOWAS member states.


Facilitate coordination of inter-governmental activities and foster cooperation in the health and medical fields in order to achieve the highest possible standard and protection of health for the peoples of the Community; disseminate technical health information of interest to Member States.

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Organizes postgraduate professional medical education through its agencies: West African College of Nursing (WACN), West African Pharmaceutical Federation (WAPF), West African Postgraduate Medical College (WAPMC) and its two constituent colleges: West African College of Physicians (WACP) and West African College of Surgeons (WACS). Programmes include management training for health personnel and workshops on community health education. Provides fellowships for training in the region. Development Programme: West African Technical Assistance Fund for Health was set up as a voluntary fund to meet extra-budgetary expenditure on programmes affecting member countries. Exchange of medical professionals, physicians, surgeons, pharmacists and nurses sent to needy member states.


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Relations with Inter-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 5 inter-governmental organizations.
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Relations with Non-Governmental Organizations

Relations with 6 non-governmental organizations.
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Members in 5 countries
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Type I Classification

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Type II Classification

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Subjects *

  • Medicine
    • Medicine
  • Society
    • Communities
  • Health Care
    • Health
  • Government
    • Intergovernmental Communities

UN Sustainable Development Goals **

GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-beingGOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities



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* Subject classification is derived from the organization names and aims.
** UN SDGs are linked to the subject classification.

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