An Investigation of Taiwan's participation in the global health system: The World Health Organization and Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation

Ya Wen Chiu, Ming Liang Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The outbreaks of emerging infectious diseases, such as SARS and avian influenza, seriously impact national security and global economy, causing international organizations to pay close attention to health issues. Disease Control Priorities in Developing Countries, published by the WHO in 2006, clearly states that preparation for emerging diseases and the influenza pandemic is one of the four principle challenges in contemporary human health policies. As the threat of avian influenza increases, the WHO acts as a key coordinator in controlling global infectious diseases. Because Taiwan has not been a member of the WHO since 1972, Taiwan is not able to obtain the latest medical information and assistance, nor is able to contribute its medical achievements at the international level. The current international situation is such that Taiwan is not allowed to actively participate in the global epidemic prevention network. It should be the top priority for the government of Taiwan to formulate workable strategies to join the international health cooperative network. The current study reviews international government's health-related organizations, mainly the WHO and APEC, and Taiwan's participation in international health over the years. We also reviewed Taiwan's strategies, challenges, and international support in recent years. Finally, this article describes and analyzes the current status of the global epidemic prevention effort, especially with respect to the two aforementioned emerging infectious diseases, and discusses their influence on Taiwan's participation in the WHO. We thus propose some short-and long-term strategies for the government of Taiwan in the years to come.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)405-418
Number of pages14
JournalTaiwan Journal of Public Health
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2006


  • Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC)
  • Avian influenza
  • International health cooperation
  • Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS)
  • World Health Organization (WHO)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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