Inquiries from the People’s Health Movement to the Candidates for the position of WHO’s Director General

PHM Global Secretariat
30 September 2006


The following questions have been sent to the candidates for the position of WHO’s Director General by the People's Health Movement.


Please refer to the linked pages for the answers of: Dr. Margaret Chan, Dr. Pascoal Manuel Mocumbi, Prof. Pekka Puska, Dr. Julio Frenk, Dr. Nay Thun, Dr. shigeru Omi


1. What will be your top priorities for WHO over the next five years?

2. Will the development of a global strategy to strength Primary Health Care be a priority for you? If so what will you propose to strengthen CPHC?

3. Where do you stand on the need to repair the damage to public health care systems caused by the inefficiencies and inequities brought about by the privatisation of such systems?

4. There has been a rapid proliferation of Global Health Initiatives and disease-specific initiatives. How will you seek WHO oversight and control of this situation?

5. How will you ensure that WHO’s plays a more assertive role in protecting public health interests in the face of trade agreements (e.g. TRIPS) that would appear to be harmful?

6. Given the pressures from various corporate interests and their allies for WHO to endorse health promoting practices what steps would you take to ensure that WHO is able to resist these pressures?

7. How will you counter balance the disproportionate influence of the rich country governments, particularly the United States, on policy development within WHO?

8. What do you propose to increase the voice and influence of civil society groups in WHO?

9. WHO has been criticized for many years for being dominated by doctors, and lacking professionals from the social sciences, legal, economic and non-medical disciplines. What is your view on this and what will you do to rectify the imbalance in disciplines and expertise within WHO?

10. The phrase "Staff are our most important resource" is commonly stated by leaders when they take office. How will you maximise this most important resource in terms of WHO's work and in relation to staff representation in dealing with management

11. Many argue that there is a particular need to build the capacity of the WHO Regional Office in Africa? Do you agree and if so, how would you go about this?

12. How will you support and promote the work of the Commission on the Social Determinants of Health from now until it reports in May 2008 and then ensure its recommendations are implemented?

PHM Global Secretariat
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