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Controversial New WHO Global TB Programme Director Must ‘Reach Out To A Skeptical TB Community’

The Lancet: Tuberculosis: criteria for global leadership?
Editorial Board

“Tereza Kasaeva is to be the new Director of WHO’s Global Tuberculosis (TB) Programme. She joins WHO from Russia’s Ministry of Health. But instead of a warm welcome, she will arrive in Geneva amid potentially disabling controversy. … [I]n the case of Kasaeva, activists have raised questions about her international expertise and experience. They are frustrated that she was named without any external call for candidates and that there was no consultation with the broader TB community. … WHO’s reputation — indeed, its political leverage — depends on the agency’s technical credibility. The sharp divisions that Kasaeva’s appointment has created bode ill for efforts to align the TB community during a year when the disease will receive unprecedented attention at a high-level meeting to be held during the 2018 U.N. General Assembly. It will now be important for Kasaeva to reach out to a skeptical TB community to reassure them of her commitment to engage and build a powerful movement for action on this still neglected disease” (1/6).

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