10th Global Conference on Health Promotion charters a path for creating ‘well-being societies’ (2)

26 December, 2021

On 16 December we noted a WHO news release on the agreement of The Geneva Charter for Well-being


I commented: 'I was unable to find a link to the Charter itself. It will be interesting to review this when it is available. Health and well-being are dependent on the availability of reliable healthcare information (including information on how to maintain health and prevent disease) and protection against misinformation.'

The draft of the charter is now available here:


The charter does not specifically champion the importance of universal access to reliable healthcare inforamtion and protection from misinformation. However, it notes that 'the role of health promotion is to catalyze and support [action] by ensuring that people and communities are enabled to take control of their health...'

The charter also recognises the benefits and harm of digital technology: 'Digital transformation and technological change have the potential to create new opportunities for connection, health literacy, knowledge-sharing, and more effective and efficient service provision. Some digital features as well as digital exclusion can create isolation and exacerbate inequities. Furthermore, health and well-being may be at risk because of the increased time spent

on digital activities and in virtual settings, from information overload, hate and bullying, the propagation of misinformation, and marketing of unhealthy products and behaviours. A wellbeing society would assess and counteract harm and disempowerment, ensure equitable access, and harness the potential of technology for human and planetary flourishing.'

There is little detail on ways forward and the roles of different stakeholders. Perhaps this will emerge in the final version.

Were any HIFA members involved in drafting this charter? It would be great to hear from you.

With thanks, Neil

Neil Pakenham-Walsh, HIFA Coordinator, neil@hifa.org www.hifa.org