The World Federation of Neurology (WFN) have a long history of engagement with the World Health Organisation (WHO) and have official relations as a global non-state actor until 2026. 

“Official relations” is a privilege granted by the WHO Executive Board to WFN as a non-governmental organization having aims and activities in conformity with the spirit, purposes and principles of WHO’s Constitution, and are invited to participate in sessions of WHO’s governing bodies.


Planned collaborative activities with WHO for the period 2023–2025

A three-year plan, for WHO non-state actors collaboration, supports WHO's work towards fulfilling the goals and objectives set in the Global action plan for the prevention and control of noncommunicable diseases 2013–2030 ⧉ , as well as on the integration of noncommunicable disease prevention and control within health emergency preparedness and response activities.

Planned collaborative activities include the provision of technical input, capacity-building, advocacy and awareness-raising, in order to help to track progress in tackling noncommunicable diseases.


WHO IGAP Epilepsy and other Neurological Disorders

Download WHO IGAP publication
[20 July 2023]

Intersectoral Global Action Plan on Epilepsy and other Neurological Disorders

At the 150th session of the World Health Organization Executive Board ⧉ on 27 January 2022,  the draft Intersectoral Global Action Plan on Epilepsy and other Neurological Disorders (IGAP) was presented to the WHO Member States at the World Health Assembly in May 2022 where it was approved.

IGAP describes comprehensive actions to improve services and quality of life, eliminate stigma and discrimination, and promote human rights for people with neurological disorders, their carers and families.  It outlines a systematic course of action that involves strengthening policies, systems and services, raising awareness about neurological disorders and brain health, reducing discrimination and fostering research and innovation.

The adoption of IGAP results from years of work and consultations with WFN, other members of the Global Neurological Alliance, the WHO Secretariat, and the Member States.


WFN IGAP Leaflet

WHO IGAP Toolkit

The IGAP toolkit accompanies and operationalizes the action plan. The toolkit complements the development of national plans and strategies for neurological disorders by listing actions and suggesting tools and resources that can be utilised to realise fully the vision of IGAP.




The Intersectoral Global Action Plan IGAP A unique opportunity for neurology across the globe [20 July 2023]

The Intersectorial Global Action Plan (IGAP): A unique opportunity for neurology across the globe
— Wolfgang Grisold et al. on behalf of WFN Trustees

IGAP Papers


WHO IGAP Epilepsy and other Neurological DisordersMore information


Optimizing brain health across the life course: WHO position paper
Optimizing brain health across the life course: WHO position paper


WHO Position paper on Brain Health

WHO's position paper on optimizing brain health across the life course is a technical complement to the Intersectoral global action plan on epilepsy and other neurological disorders 2022–2031.

The position paper provides a conceptual framework for what brain health is and how brain health can be optimized throughout life with actions across the following clusters of determinants: physical health, healthy environments, safety and security, learning and social connection, and access to quality services.

WFN World Brain Day 2023

Brain Health and Disability: Leave No One Behind

Brain health was the dominant theme for the WFN World Brain Day, held jointly this year with the World Federation for Neurorehabilitation (WFNR). The theme was chosen to coincide with WFN's work on the WHO campaign Optimising Brain Health ⧉ and Optimizing brain health across life ⧉.

Taking place on July 22, 2023, the campaign shared important information related to the global impact of brain health and disability, and raised global awareness in an effort to improve access and reduce gaps in equity.


Prof Wolfgang Grisold addressing the 154th WHO Executive Board

The 154th session of the Executive Board

22–27 January 2024 - WHO headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

The WFN was represented at the 154th session of the Executive Board by Prof. Wolfgang Grisold and Prof. Alla Guekht. During the session dedicated to Universal Health Care, Prof Grisold was able to address ⧉ the Executive Board and member state representatives about the needs of persons with neurological diseases worldwide, and End TB Strategy ⧉.