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Health writers congratulate new Gavi CEO, seek enhanced vaccination programme

by Haruna Gimba
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By Asmau Ahmad

The Health Writers’ Association of Nigeria (HEWAN), has congratulated Dr Muhammad Pate, on his appointment as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Vaccine Alliance (GAVI).

This was disclosed in a congratulatory message, jointly signed in Lagos on Tuesday by Chioma Obinna and Lucy Osuizigbo, the President and Secretary of HEWAN, respectively.

Gavi had on February 13, 2023, announced the appointment of Pate, a former Minister of State for Health in Nigeria, as its new CEO. Pate will officially assume duties on Aug. 3, 2023.

The HEWAN officials noted that the appointment of Pate, an expert in internal medicine and infectious diseases, was well deserved.

The association urged Pate to use his good offices to support and make vaccination and immunisation programmes sustainable to prevent infectious diseases in Nigeria.

They also urged him to advocate and support policies that would increase vaccination interventions as a strategy to curb diseases globally, especially in the West African sub-region.

The Obinna and Osuizigbo wished Pate success in his new assignment, while assuring him of the association’s support.

Pate, in May 2019, was appointed by the World Bank Group as the Global Director of Health, Nutrition and Population (HNP) and Director, Global Financing Facility (GFF), in Washington DC.

At about the same time, he was also appointed by the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health as Julio Frenk Professor of Public Health Leadership in the Department of Global Health and Population.

He had previously worked with the World Bank: He joined the Bank as a young professional in 2000 and worked on health issues such as HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis and malaria in several regions, including Africa and the East Asia and Pacific.

Prior to Pate’s appointment as Nigeria’s Minister of State for Health in 2011, he had successfully served as the Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA).

In 2013, he resigned as the Minister of State for Health to join the Duke University’s Global Health Institute, where he served as a visiting professor and taught comparative health systems to postgraduate students.

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