New WHO Chief Promises Healthcare for All

Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General-Elect, briefs the press in Geneva. Photo: UN/Daniel Johnson
Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General-Elect, briefs the press in Geneva. Photo: UN/Daniel Johnson

The newly elected head of the United Nations World Health Organization (WHO), Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, outlined his priorities Wednesday at the agency’s headquarters in Geneva.

According to a UN report, he stressed the need for Member States to provide healthcare for all and to implement international health regulations. Dr. Tedros also stressed that the original reason the UN health agency was set up nearly 70 years ago remains true today: providing healthcare for all.

“All roads should lead to universal health coverage,” he stated.

Another key WHO mission is managing global health emergencies, Dr. Tedros said, pointing to changes put in place by his predecessor Dr. Margaret Chan, that had led to the swift detection of the current Ebola outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC).

Dr. Tedros, of Ethiopia, will begin his five-year term on 1 July 2017, WHO said in a statement following his election Tuesday. Among his previous positions, Dr. Tedros was Ethiopia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and, prior, Minister of Health.

Photo / Video courtesy: UN

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Rakesh Raman