Opinion of public health authorities

There is widespread scientific consensus that exposure to second-hand smoke is harmful. The link between passive smoking and health risks is accepted by every major medical and scientific organisation, including: The World Health Organization: The governments of 168 nations have signed and currently 174 have ratified the World Health Organization Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, which states that "Parties recognize that scientific evidence has unequivocally established that exposure to tobacco smoke causes death, disease and disability." The U.S. National Institutes of Health[96] The Centers for Disease Control[97] The United States Surgeon General The U.S. National Cancer Institute[98] The United States Environmental Protection Agency[99] The California Environmental Protection Agency The American Heart Association,[100] American Lung Association,[101] and American Cancer Society[102] The American Medical Association[103] The American Academy of Pediatrics[104] The Australian National Health and Medical Research Council[105] The United Kingdom Scientific Committee on Tobacco and Health. The World Health Organization (WHO) is a specialized agency of the United Nations (UN) that is concerned with international public health. It was established on 7 April 1948, with headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland, and is a member of the United Nations Development Group. Its predecessor, the Health Organization, was an agency of the League of Nations. The constitution of the World Health Organization had been signed by all 61 countries of the United Nations by 22 July 1946, with the first meeting of the World Health Assembly finishing on 24 July 1948. It incorporated the Office International d'Hygiene Publique and the League of Nations Health Organization. Since its creation, WHO has been responsible for playing a leading role in the eradication of smallpox. Its current priorities include communicable diseases, in particular, HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis; the mitigation of the effects of non-communicable diseases; sexual and reproductive health, development, and aging; nutrition, food security and healthy eating; occupational health; substance abuse; and drive the development of reporting, publications, and networking. WHO is responsible for the World Health Report, a leading international publication on hea th, the worldwide World Health Survey, and World Health Day (7th-April of every Year). Its links with the International Atomic Energy Agency and distribution of contraception have both proved controversial, as have guidelines on healthy eating and the 2009 flu pandemic. The League of Nations Health Organization was established following the First World War inside the League of Nations framework. According to the League's Covenant, it was to "endeavour to take steps in matters of international concern for the prevention and control of disease, even in cases of dire human hardship". Its efforts were hampered by the Second World War, during which United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration also played a role in international health initiatives. During the United Nations Conference on International Organization, references to health had been incorporated into the United Nations Charter and it passed a declaration that an international health body would be set up. In February 1946, the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations helped draft the constitution of the new body. The use of the word "world", rather than "international", emphasised the truly global nature of what the organization was seeking to achieve. The constitution of the World Health Organization had been signed by all 61 countries of the United Nations by 22 July 1946. It thus became the first specialised agency of the United Nations to which every member subscribed. Its constitution formally came into force on the first World Health Day on 7 April 1948, when it was ratified by the 26th member state. The first meeting of the World Health Assembly finished on 24 July 1948, having secured a budget of US$5 million (then GBP?1,250,000) for the 1949 year. Andrija Stampar was the Assembly's first president, and G. Brock Chisholm was appointed Director-General of WHO, having served as Executive Secretary during the planning stages. Its first priorities were to control the spread of malaria, tuberculosis and sexually transmitted infections, and to improve maternal and child health, nutrition and environmental hygiene. Its first legislative act was concerning the compilation of accurate statistics on the spread and morbidity of disease. The logo of the World Health Organization features the Rod of Asclepius as a symbol for healing.