On 23May-the World Health Organization (WHO) announced that Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, a health expert from Ethiopia, was elected as the new director-general to lead the United Nations agency focused on international public health.Tedros, who prefers to be called by his first name, will be taking over the position from Dr. Margaret Chan, who has been overseeing the agency since 2006. Tedros will serve a five-year term in the new position which will be begin on July 1. He will be the first health official from Africa to serve as director-general
In a speech before the election—part of a weeklong meeting of health ministers from 194 nations in Geneva—Tedros talked about growing up in Ethiopia and Tedros also spoke about the need for universal access to health care, a better response to health emergencies and the need to tackle gender-based violence, as well as threats to global health like climate change, the migrant crisis and terrorism.Tedros was Ethiopia’s health minister, he led comprehensive health system reforms that expanded the country’s health system, including the creation of 3,500 health centers and 16,000 health posts and boosting the health workforce by 38,000.
Under his watch, Ethiopia also established a financing mechanism to expand health insurance coverage.