The World Health Organization’s Global Campaign for Sexual Health, 1945-1989

Project: Research project

Reporting Period

July 1, 2018-July 1, 2019

Project Description

The purpose of this project is to examine the campaigns against treponemal and sexually-transmitted disease waged by the World Health Organization (WHO) during the Cold War. Between the 1940s and 1980s, the WHO made the global control of these maladies (which include syphilis, gonorrhea, yaws, pinta, and bejel) one of its central goals, launching “mass penicillin campaigns” in forty-six countries and treating roughly 50 million infected individuals. Conducted in countries as geographically and politically distinct as Indonesia, India, Yugoslavia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Jamaica, and Argentina, these initiatives constitute a central chapter in the WHO's history – one that has yet to be written.
Effective start/end date7/1/187/1/19