Global Health Leaders Award: India’s ASHA Workers honoured for advancing global health at 75th World Health Assembly


India’s one million ASHA (Accredited Social Health Activist) workers, who have been at the forefront of healthcare delivery in India have been honored with the Global Health Leaders Award 2022 in the backdrop of the ongoing 75th World Health Assembly. ASHA workers were one of the six recipients of the Global Health Leaders Award.

A release from the World Health Organisation said, “ASHA (which means hope in Hindi) are more than 1 million female volunteers in India, honoured for the crucial role in linking the community with the health system, to ensure those living in rural poverty can access primary healthcare services, as shown throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

Prime Minister Modi extended his wishes to India’s one million ASHA workers on being honoured by WHO. He acknowledged that they are at the forefront of ensuring a healthy India and their dedication and determination is admirable.

Global Health Leaders Award: ASHA workers honoured by WHO

ASHA Workers in India were honoured at the 75th World Health Assembly for their outstanding contribution to advancing global health, demonstrated leadership, and commitment to regional health issues. They were recognized for ensuring those living in poverty can access primary healthcare services.


More than one million female volunteers ASHA worked to provide maternal care and immunization for children against vaccine-preventable diseases, treatment for hypertension and tuberculosis, community healthcare and core areas of health promotion for nutrition, sanitation, and healthy living.

Global Health Leaders Award 2022 winners

Global Health Leaders Awards winners


Dr. Paul Farmer

Dr Farmer was recognised for his contributions towards providing direct healthcare services for those who are sick and living in poverty.

Dr Ahmed Hankir

Recognised for his anti-stigma programme that blends in the power of performing arts and storytelling with psychiatry

Ludmila Sofia Oliveira Varela

Volleyball player was honoured for facilitating access to sports as an alternative to risky behaviour in youth

Yohei Sasakawa

For his global fight against leprosy and the associated stigma and social discrimination

Polio workers in Afghanistan

Eight polio workers who were shot and killed by armed gunmen in Afghanistan on February 24, 2022. They were reaching thousands of children through house-to-house Polio campaigns

ASHA workers

More than 1 million female volunteers in India were honoured for their crucial role in linking the community with the health system.

Global Health Leaders Award

Global Health Leaders Awards were established in 2019. The ceremony of the awards was part of the live-streamed high-level opening session of the 75th World Health Assembly. The Director-General of WHO Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced the awards himself. The awardees are also selected by the Director-General.

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