The Director General, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu has been appointed as an Assistant Director-General for Health Emergency Intelligence at the World Health Organization, WHO.
He will lead the work on strengthening pandemic and epidemic intelligence globally, including heading the WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence in Berlin beginning November 1.
Dr Ihekweazu, trained as an infectious disease epidemiologist, has over 20 years of experience working in senior public health and leadership positions in several National Public Health Institutes, including the South African National Institute for Communicable Diseases, the United Kingdom’s Health Protection Agency, and Germany’s Robert Koch Institute. He has led several short-term engagements for WHO, mainly in response to major infectious disease outbreaks around the world.
He is a graduate of the College of Medicine, University of Nigeria and has a Masters in Public Health (MPH) from the Heinrich-Heine University, Dusseldorf, Germany. In 2003, he was awarded a Fellowship for the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training (EPIET) and subsequently completed his Public Health specialization in the United Kingdom. He is widely published in medical peer-review journals.
Dr Ihekweazu’s appointment will help further accelerate WHO’s work in health emergencies.