Special session on the COVID-19 response

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The Director-General, following consultation with the Board Chair, has called for an Executive Board special session on the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) response to follow up on the WHA73.1 resolution approved by Member States earlier in May. The meeting will provide an opportunity to discuss with Member States, and seek their guidance on, the developments around the efforts to implement the strategic preparedness and response plan, as well as the actions taken to initiate the review by an independent panel.

This is the 5th special session of the WHO Executive Board and the meeting will take place on 5-6 October 2020 as a hybrid meeting combining in person and online participation, to respect safety measures. One delegate from each Member State represented on the Executive Board (EB) will gain entry to WHO to participate in person. Other Member State representatives, observers, invited representatives of the United Nations and other participating inter-governmental organizations and non-State actors will attend online. 

The sessions will be webcast live on this page. WHO will broadcast some parts of the Executive Board special session via Twitter — follow @WHO and hashtag #EBSpecial


12:00-18:00, with a break between 15:00-16:00 (CEST)

The Director-General will submit an interim report which provide a brief summary of WHO’s activities since January 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, and will set out the steps taken to ensure that appropriate lessons are learned and best practices implemented as the pandemic evolves.

Highlights of the Executive Board special session

  • Update on implementation of resolution WHA73.1 (2020) on the COVID-19 response
  • Update from the Co-Chairs of the Independent Panel for Pandemic Preparedness and Response, the Chair of the IHR Review Committee and the Chair of the Independent Oversight and Advisory Committee for the WHO Health Emergencies Programme.

The Executive Board special session documents can be found here:


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