Launch of Public Support Observatory

PSOFront row: Dr Jaouad Mahjour, acting WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean, Mr Ghassan Hasbani, H.E. the Minister of Public Health, Dr Fadlo Khuri, President, American University of Beirut. Back row: Dr Gabriele Riedner, WHO Representative, Dr Walid Ammar, Director-General of Health, Professor Iman Nuwayhid, Dean Faculty of Health Sciences, American University of Beirut22 April 2018 –  On 16 April 2018, the launch of the Policy Support Observatory took place in the Ministry of Public Health of Lebanon. The Observatory is based in the Ministry of Public Health and supported through a tripartite agreement between the Ministry of Public Health, WHO and the American Universtiy of Beirut. The first of its kind in the Eastern Mediterranean Region, it aims at promoting innovation in the health sector, strengthening governance, and facilitating the adoption of benchmark practices. It shall provide evidence for health policy formulation and serve as a platform to foster the cooperation of academic institutions and reinforce the collaboration mechanisms of the various stakeholders in health. 

“Countries must build a consensus not only on the scope of services to be covered, but also how they are financed, managed, and delivered. This requires strong stewardship, cooperation between health stakeholders, and alignment with national health policies,“ said Dr Tedros, Director General of WHO, on the occasion of the launch of the Policy Support Observatory.

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WHO support to Lebanon: briefing for partners


WHO cholera risk assessment mission, informal settlement of Syrian refugees, Bekaa, Lebanon. Photo credit: WHO/O. Maher

WHO, while engaging with health partners in all aspects of the health sector response, will focus its support on filling service gaps (primarily medications), improving service delivery and on building capacity of health system institutions with the longer term perspective of Lebanon achieving universal health coverage.

Key achievements in previous biennium

  • 172 000 individuals with chronic diseases received treatment 
  • More than 2000 national health care workers trained on various health interventions
  • 40 primary health care facilities equipped providing basic and emergency mental health care
  • Health security improved: contingency plans developed for health emergencies and hazard management teams 
  • Health promotion activities conducted for youth at 300 public and private schools
  • Lebanon mainted polio-free status in the presence of an ongoing polio outbreak in Syria (more than 300 000 children vaccinated)
  • Health monitoring: vaccination coverage survey; school-based student health survey; noncommunicable diseases risk behaviour and prevalence survey.

Read the partners' brief

About WHO in Lebanon

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  • Launch of Public Support Observatory
    Launch of Public Support Observatory
  • WHO support to Lebanon: briefing for partners
    WHO support to Lebanon: briefing for partners


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Key health-related statistics

Total population (000) 4356
Total health expenditure (as % of general government expenditure)  10.7
Maternal mortality (per 100 000 live births)  15
Primary health care units and centres (2010)  2.5
Life expectancy  74.9

Source: Country statistical profiles 2017

Lebanon country health profile

Regional Health Observatory

Contact us

WHO Representative
PO Box 5391

Lebanon WHO headquarters page