Margaret Chan Of Hong Kong Chosen As Next WHO Director General08/11/2006 by Tove Iren S. Gerhardsen for Intellectual Property Watch Leave a CommentShare this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)IP-Watch is a non-profit independent news service, and depends on subscriptions. To access all of our content, please subscribe now. You may also offer additional support with your subscription, or donate.By Tove Iren S. Gerhardsen Margaret Chan of Hong Kong (China) has been elected the next director general of the World Health Organization by a large majority of member governments, according to sources.“It is not a surprise that Chan was chosen but with such a big margin – that is a surprise,” a source close to the WHO told Intellectual Property Watch.The source indicated that Chan had been elected with 24 of the 34 votes of the WHO Executive Board, but the numbers were unconfirmed by press time.The two runner-up candidates were Shigeru Omi of Japan or Julio Frenk of Mexico, who got about the same number of votes, the source said.Chan was chosen today by the Executive Board from a short list of five candidates published by the WHO on 6 November (IPW, Public Health, 6 November 2006). On 7 November the board members interviewed the candidates.The decision is not final, however, until a special session of the World Health Assembly votes on it on 9 November, the WHO said.The source indicated, however, that the Assembly had never before objected to the choice of the Executive Board.Chan has been in charge of the handling of the SARS (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) epidemic in Hong Kong, the source said, and in 1994 she was appointed director of health in Hong Kong, the WHO said. She was most recently assistant director general of communicable diseases at the WHO.In an interview with Intellectual Property Watch in November 2005, she defended the pharmaceutical companies regarding patents and access to treatment for avian influenza (IPW, Public Health, 10 November 2005).Chan obtained her medical degree from the University of Western Ontario in Canada. She joined the Hong Kong Department of Health in 1978, where her career in public health began, the WHO said.The other two candidates on the short list were Kazem Behbehani from Kuwait and Elena Salgado Méndez of Spain, the WHO said. The source said Salgado Méndez was less well known despite having chaired the World Health Assembly last year.Tove Iren S. Gerhardsen may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Share this Story:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Related"Margaret Chan Of Hong Kong Chosen As Next WHO Director General" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.