United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced the membership of his Global Health Crises Task Force.
The Global Health Crises Task Force was established by the Secretary General to support and monitor implementation of recommendations developed by the Secretary-General’s High-level Panel on the Global Response to Health Crises. The Panel issued its report “Protecting humanity from future health crises” on 9 February 2016, following which the Secretary-General released his observations on the Panel’s recommendations in his report entitled “Strengthening the global health architecture” on 8 April 2016. In its work, the Task Force will ensure that the implementation of the Panel’s recommendations is aligned with the observations of the Secretary-General.
The Task Force will produce regular updates for the Secretary-General, describing progress on implementation of the Panel’s recommendations. The Task Force will also bring to the attention of the Secretary-General issues relating to emerging health crises and to gaps or weaknesses in the global health architecture.
The Task Force will be co-led by Jan Eliasson, the United Nations Deputy Secretary-General, Jim Yong Kim, the President of the World Bank Group and Margaret Chan, the Director-General of the World Health Organization. The Deputy Secretary-General will also serve as Chair of the Task Force. David Nabarro, the Secretary-General’s Special Adviser on the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and Climate Change, will support the Task Force chair.
The membership of the Task Force is drawn from across the UN system as well as external experts. These are distinguished individuals with backgrounds in infectious diseases, community health care, public health and development, and with experience in risk assessment, implementation of humanitarian action, management of outbreak responses, financing, research and innovation.
The Task Force will exercise its functions for one year, starting from July 2016.
The list of the Task Force co-leads and members, together with the biographies of the members external to the United Nations system, is set out below.
Task Force Members
Jan Eliasson (Sweden)(Chair) is the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations.
Jim Yong Kim (United States) is the President of the World Bank Group.
Dr Margaret Chan (China) is the Director-General of the World Health Organization.
Helen Clark (New Zealand) is the Administrator of the United Nations Development Programme.
Chris Elias (United States) is the president of the Global Development Program at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Focusing on areas with the potential for high-impact, sustainable solutions that can reach hundreds of millions of people, he oversees Global Development’s portfolio in Agriculture Development; Emergency Response; Family Planning; Financial Services for the Poor; Maternal, Newborn, & Child Health; Nutrition; Polio Eradication; Vaccine Delivery; and Water, Sanitation & Hygiene. Prior to joining the Gates Foundation in February 2012, D worked in various positions and countries for international nonprofit organizations, most recently serving as the president and CEO of PATH, an international, nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the health of people around the world by advancing technologies, strengthening systems, and encouraging healthy behaviors.
Anthony S. Fauci (United States) is the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the National Institutes of Health. Since his appointment as NIAID director in 1984, Dr. Fauci has overseen an extensive research portfolio devoted to preventing, diagnosing, and treating infectious and immune-mediated diseases. Dr. Fauci also is chief of the NIAID Laboratory of Immunoregulation, where he has made numerous important discoveries related to HIV/AIDS and is one of the most-cited scientists in the field. Dr. Fauci serves as one of the key advisors to the White House and Department of Health and Human Services on global AIDS issues, and on initiatives to bolster medical and public health preparedness against emerging infectious disease threats such as Ebola and pandemic influenza. He was one of the principal architects of the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), which has already been responsible for saving millions of lives throughout the developing world.
Mohamed-Mahmoud Hacen (Mauritania) is the President of the Mauritanian Public Health Association. During the recent Ebola outbreak, he coordinated the contribution of the Islamic Development Bank to the epidemic control and post-Ebola recovery from 2015-2016. Dr. Hacen began his career with the Ministry of Health in Mauritania. As National Director of Health Services, he was in charge of oversight on epidemic preparedness and response. He subsequently worked with the World Health Organization as an adviser for disease prevention and control in West Africa and as the WHO representative in Benin, Republic of Congo, Burundi, Madagascar and Burkina Faso. Following his retirement in 2006, Dr. Hacen was appointed by WHO to coordinate the response to the H1N1 Influenza Pandemic from 2009 - 2010. As a member of a technical working group appointed by WHO, he also contributed to the revitalization of the Global Task Force on Cholera Control from 2013-2014.
Felicity Harvey (United Kingdom) is the Director General for Public and International Health and will retire at the end of June 2016. Since her appointment to this position in April 2012, Dr. Harvey has been responsible for global and public health, including the public health system; communicable and non-communicable diseases; and emergency preparedness, resilience and response, including coordinating the Ebola response across National Health Service England (NHS) and Public Health England. She previously served as Director of the Prime Minister’s Delivery Unit; Head of Medicines, Pharmacy and Industry Group at the Department of Health; Director of Prison Health and member of HM Prison Service Board at HM Prison Service; Head of Quality Management, NHS Executive; and Private Secretary to the Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Harvey is a member of the Independent Oversight and Advisory Committee for the WHO Health Emergencies Programme.
Ilona Kickbusch (Germany) is the Director of the Global Health Centre at the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva. She was a member of the independent Ebola interim assessment panel of the WHO. She has recently been awarded the Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany (Bundesverdienstkreuz) in recognition of her invaluable contributions to innovation in governance for global health and global health diplomacy. She is a senior advisor to the Regional Directors of the WHO Regional Offices for Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean and has advised many countries on their global health strategies. In Switzerland she serves on the executive board of the Careum Foundation and on the expert panel advising the Federal Councillor responsible for health. She has contributed to innovation in health in many ways throughout her career and has a strong commitment to the empowerment of women. She has worked with the WHO at various levels and in academia as professor at Yale University.
Anthony Lake (United States) is the Executive Director of the United Nations Children’s Fund.
Yves Lévy (France) is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the French National Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm). His research activity is directed at understanding the development of the immune system and its pathology. He has coordinated and developed some twenty national and international clinical trials of immunotherapies and vaccines for HIV infection, certain immunodeficiencies and infectious diseases. From 1996 to the present day, Professor Lévy has directed the Department of Clinical Immunology and Infectious Diseases at Henri Mondor de Créteil Hospital. In 2006, he became Scientific Director of the vaccine programme of the French National Agency for Research on AIDS and Viral Hepatitis (ANRS). In 2011, he created the “Vaccine Research Institute” labex (laboratory of excellence). From 2010 to 2012, he was Vice-Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Paris-Est Créteil University (UPEC). He subsequently became a special advisor to the Minister for Higher Education and Research.
Poh Lian Lim (Singapore) is a Senior Consultant in the Ministry of Health, Singapore, and at Tan Tock Seng Hospital. She holds joint academic appointments at Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine, National University of Singapore School of Public Health and School of Medicine. She also chairs national committees for antimicrobial resistance control, and infectious diseases specialist training. Professor Lim heads the Travellers’ Health & Vaccination Clinic, and is the Site Director for GeoSentinel in Singapore. She has been actively involved with the Steering Committee of the WHO Global Outbreak Alert & Response Network (GOARN), and the Advisory Group on the Reform of WHO Work’s in Health Emergencies. She has worked in various outbreaks at national and international levels, including SARS, dengue, chikungunya, H1N1 influenza, and leptospirosis. Professor Lim was Head of Department at Tan Tock Seng Hospital’s Institute of Infectious Diseases & Epidemiology from 2012-2016.
Stephen O'Brien (United Kingdom) is the United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and the Emergency Relief Coordinator.
Shigeru Omi (Japan) is the President of the Japan Community Health Care Organization. Since 2013, he has served as a member of the World Health Organization Executive Board. He was the President of the 66th World Health Assembly in 2013. Dr. Omi served for ten years as the WHO Regional Director for the Western Pacific from 1999 - 2009, and spearheaded fight against the SARS outbreak in the year 2003. He also served as the Director of the Division of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control in WHO Regional Office for the Western Pacific from 1990 - 1998, and lead the Regional Polio Eradication Initiative . From 2009 - 2012, Dr. Omi taught public health at Jichi Medical School in Japan, where he had worked as a researcher in the Division of Immunology from 1987-1989.
Elhadj As Sy (Senegal) is the Secretary General of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Before joining the IFRC in August 2014, Mr. Sy was UNICEF’s Director of Partnerships and Resource Development in New York. He has also served as UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa and Global Emergency Coordinator for the Horn of Africa. From 2005 to 2008, Mr. Sy was Director, HIV/AIDS Practice with the United Nations Development Programme in New York. Before that, he worked with the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria in Geneva. Mr. Sy has also held the position of UNAIDS Representative in New York and Director of the New York Liaison Office. From 1988 to 1997, he served as Director of Health and Development Programmes with Environment and Development Action in the Third World in Dakar, Senegal. Mr. Sy is a member of the Independent Oversight and Advisory Committee for the WHO Health Emergencies Programme.