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New WHO Chief Plans More Action on SARS

May 22, 2003

South Korea's TB expert, Dr. Jong-wook Lee, 58, was elected Wednesday to head the World Health Organization. Lee, who has spent 19 years at WHO, won praise for his low-key but efficient management style as head of WHO's Stop TB program. He is the first South Korean to head a UN agency and replaces former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland, who is stepping down in July. Lee was nominated by WHO's executive board in January; his confirmation by WHO's annual assembly was a formality. "SARS is the first new disease of the 21st century, but it will not be the last," Lee said. "In many ways the global health situation has improved during the 55 years since WHO was founded," said Lee. "But in parts of sub-Saharan Africa, HIV/AIDS and other health threats are pushing average life expectancy down toward 40 years and less. A globalized society characterized by such extreme disparities is neither acceptable nor even viable," he said.

Back to other CDC news for May 22, 2003

Previous Updates

Adapted from:
Associated Press
05.21.03; Clare Nullis


  
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This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.
 
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