The global pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus has highlighted the role that the World Health Organisation (WHO) plays in managing such a health crisis, as well as the potential need for reform of the organisation.

The aim of the online conference, chaired by German Health Minister Jens Spahn, was to hold initial talks about the European Union’s position on potential reforms, thus allowing the 27 EU ministers to get a clearer understanding of where common ground already exists and what aspects require closer consideration. The WHO’s Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, and the European Commission were also invited to attend. The goal was to find a basic consensus of member states and the European Commission on how to go about a reform of the WHO.