25 January 2021

During the 148th session of the World Health Organization (WHO) Executive Board meeting, the Member States passed a game-changing resolution on oral health. WHO Director General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus called it a “landmark resolution”. The last time the WHO governing bodies adopted a resolution regarding oral health was in 2007, which is ancient in a fast-paced global health context. Why should oral health be of interest at all for global health?

The resolution highlights that more than 3.5 billion people worldwide suffer from oral diseases and these diseases are closely linked to other noncommunicable diseases. Worldwide, oral diseases account for US$ 545 billion in direct and indirect  costs,  ranking poor oral health among the most costly health domains like diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. While there have been improvements in some countries, the burden of poor oral health remains especially high among the most vulnerable in society. The resolution explicitly refers to research from RIHS, conducted by the research group on Quality and Safety of Oral Health Care which is led by Stefan Listl.  

On 21 January, the resolution received ample support from the Member States across the globe and was also strongly endorsed by the FDI World Dental Federation, the International Association for Dental Research (IADR), the World Heart Federation on behalf of the Global Coalition for Circulatory Health, the International Society of Nephrology, M̩decins Sans Fronti̬res International, Medicus Mundi International РNetwork Health for All, and the World Federation of Public Health Associations.

WHO and the Member States have now been tasked to develop a long-overdue global strategy, action plan and monitoring framework for oral health, aligned with UHC and NCD agendas. Other initiatives (in which Stefan Listl is involved), such as the Lancet Commission on Oral Health, the FDI World Dental Federation’s recently released Vision 2030 report, the forthcoming U.S. Surgeon-General’s  report on oral health in America and the forthcoming WHO Global Oral Health Report will contribute to much needed debates to bring oral health back to the global health arena.

Related news items


TropIQ seeks new mosquito repellents

21 September 2021

TropIQ Health Sciences, a Radboudumc spin-off, has received a 1.3 million USD grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to track down new mosquito repellents.

read more

New start-up Patholyt will bring AI research into pathology diagnostics

21 September 2021

Patholyt is on a mission to accelerate the adoption of artificial intelligence in pathology diagnostics and improve the chances of cancer patients worldwide. Patholyt is a spin-off from Radboudumc, a frontrunner in computational pathology research.

read more

Treatment of most common skin cancer can sometimes wait

20 September 2021

Not treating but keeping an eye on the cancer is also an option

read more

Donor limbs last longer thanks to improved preservation technology

17 September 2021

Research by Anne Sophie supported Maartje's double hand transplantation

read more

Young Radboudumc researchers receive grant to engage in bio-medical and health research that is off the beaten path

16 September 2021

The ZonMw Off Road program is once again giving young scientists the opportunity to conduct innovative research in medical and/or health care. This research is off the beaten track and aims to bring about new insights and unexpected breakthroughs for healthcare and healthcare innovation.

read more

Infections increase risk to develop dementia

16 September 2021

In a recently published study, Radboudumc researchers investigated the effects of infectious events on cognitive decline and the development of dementia and its possible structural underpinning using pre- and post-infection MRI of the brain.

read more