Anil Soni, health expert having Indian origin, to be first CEO of the WHO Foundation

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Anil Soni, Indian-origin based global health expert, has been named as the first Chief Executive Officers of the recently introduced The WHO Foundation, which works under complete collaboration with the World Health Organization for addressing the most ardent health challenges across the world.

Soni will begin his tenure as the first CEO of The WHO Foundation, commencing from January 1. In a press statement released by the Foundation on Monday, it stated Soni will intensity the pace of the Foundation’s “work to invest in innovative, evidence-based initiatives that support WHO in delivering on its mission to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all,”.

The WHO Foundation, based in Geneva, was launched in May 2020, is an independent grant making agency, and will work alongside the World Health Organization to resolve the ardent health challenges faced by the world.

Anil Soni, served as the Head of Global Infectious Diseases in a global healthcare company, called the Viatris Foundation.

WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus termed Soni as a ‘proven innovator’ in the domain of global health, who has worked for two decades in service of the communities affected by HIV/AIDS.

Dr Tedros said, “He earned my trust when he and his team at the Clinton Health Access Initiative worked side-by-side with the Ministry of Health in Ethiopia to expand access to treatment and strengthen the management of our health centers.”

Soni iterated the world is at a ‘crucial juncture’ considering the global public health. He said, “After months of combatting the COVID-19 pandemic, there is hope for several successful vaccine candidates. Beyond this crucial step, the path to recovery necessitates expanded investment in the many health priorities that have been compromised in recent months – from drops in vaccine coverage and HIV treatment to delays in cancer treatment.”

The WHO Foundation described Soni as a ‘seasoned global health expert’ with over two decades of work experience across public, private, and nonprofit sectors to widen the healthcare accessibility in low and middle-income countries.

The Foundation stated, “In addition to advisory roles with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the MDG Health Alliance, Soni joins the WHO Foundation with a strong track record of mobilizing resources and advocating for global health priorities, as demonstrated through his leadership of the Friends of the Global Fight in the United States.”

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