World Health Organization in the era of Margaret Chan

November 16, 2006

An Editorial in this week's issue of The Lancet discusses the challenges facing Margaret Chan, the newly elected Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO).

Margaret Chan, China's candidate, was approved by the first special session of the World Health Assembly on November 9 in Geneva. She takes up her role formally on Jan 4, 2007 and will soon have to choose which programmes to prioritise over others.

In the Editorial, The Lancet wishes Chan every success but notes that she now needs to create an operational team that commands the confidence of member states. She will need to massively scale-up WHO's scientific and advocacy response to malaria, tuberculosis, HIV-AIDS, child, newborn, and maternal mortality, together with sexual and reproductive health - all of which have seen terrible failures at global and country levels. The Editorial also calls for her to review and, if necessary, reverse some of the policies of the previous head of WHO that have harmed important programmes in Geneva. The Lancet welcomes the fact that Chan's election will help bring China's population of 1.3 billion more directly into the global health system.

The Lancet comments: "WHO staff speak warmly of Chan and emphasise the respect she has for the systems and processes of the agency. These qualities will certainly make Chan a strong and competent manager. Whether they will make her a good leader is another matter...The skill she will now need above all is imagination."
EMBARGO: 00:01H (London time) Friday November 17, 2006.

EMBARGO: In North America, 18:30H EST Thursday November 16, 2006.

Contact: The Lancet press office T) +44 (0) 207 424 4949/4249


Related Population Articles from Brightsurf:

Population dynamics and the rise of empires in Inner Asia
In a new study published in Cell, researchers seek to understand the genetic, sociopolitical and cultural changes surrounding the formation of the eastern Eurasian Steppe's historic empires.

Estimating bisphenol exposures in the Australian population
Once found in bottles, food containers, cash register receipts and electronics, bisphenol A (BPA) has been phased out of many products because of health concerns and government regulations.

How will the population accept COVID-19 tracing apps?
Coronavirus tracing applications for the detection of infection chains are currently being developed and made available.

The Lancet: World population likely to shrink after mid-century, forecasting major shifts in global population and economic power
World's population likely to shrink after mid-century, forecasting major shifts in global population and economic power - new analysis, published in The Lancet forecasts global, regional, and national populations, mortality, fertility, and migration for 195 countries worldwide.

Planning for a growing elderly population
The fact that people are living longer lives represents one of the crowning achievements of the last century, but also requires careful planning on the part of governments.

Perpetual predator-prey population cycles
How can predators coexist with their prey over long periods without the predators completely depleting the resource that keeps them alive?

How Human Population came from our ability to cooperate
Humans' ability to cooperate during child-bearing years by sharing food, labor, and childcare duties is the story of population growth.

Population shift resulting in fewer homicides
People are living longer and fewer are having children. This has caused the 15-29 age group to shrink worldwide, a demographic responsible for majority of homicides.

Tommorow's population will be larger, heavier and eat more
Food demand is growing at the same time as people are getting bigger.

UK bumblebee population trends
Data collected by Bumblebee Conservation Trust (BBCT) volunteers to assess the country's changing bumblebee populations have been analyzed in a new way for the first time at the University of Kent -- and show mixed results about their decline, with cause for concern for two species.

Read More: Population News and Population Current Events is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to