The World Health Organization (WHO) appointed Margaret Chan, a doctor from China, to the Director-general position on Wednesday. In Dr. Chan’s acceptance speech, she noted, “I want us to be judged by the impact we have on the health of people of Africa, and the health of women… Improvement in the health of people in Africa and the health of women are key indicators of the performance of WHO,” according to a release by WHO. Dr. Chan has pledged to work hard to improve the health of people all around the world. “The work we do together saves lives and relieves suffering. I will work with you tirelessly to make this world a healthier place.”
Dr. Chan has been a key leader in fighting the avian flu and SARS outbreaks. She received her medical degree from the University of Western Ontario and also has a degree in public health from the National University of Singapore. Dr. Chan’s appointment follows the sudden death of her predecessor, Dr. Lee Jong-Wook.