World Health Organization (WHO), Berlin, Germany
Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu is the Assistant Director General at the World Health Organization (WHO) for Surveillance and Health Emergency Intelligence and leads the WHO Hub for Pandemic and Epidemic Intelligence, based in Berlin, Germany. Previously, Dr. Ihekweazu was the first Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), which he led July 2016 – October 2021, building it from a small unit to a leading public health agency in Africa. He acted as Interim Director of the West Africa Regional Centre for Surveillance and Disease Control through 2017. Dr. Ihekweazu trained as an infectious disease epidemiologist and has over 25 years’ experience working in senior public health and leadership positions in national public health institutes including NCDC, South African National Institute for Communicable Diseases, the UK’s Health Protection Agency, and Germany’s Robert Koch Institute. Dr. Ihekweazu has led several short-term engagements for WHO, mainly building surveillance systems and responding to major infectious disease outbreaks. He was part of the first WHO COVID-19 international mission to China.
Dr. Ihekweazu is a graduate of the College of Medicine, University of Nigeria and has a Masters in Public Health from the Heinrich-Heine University, Dusseldorf, Germany. In 2003, he was awarded a Fellowship for the European Programme for Intervention Epidemiology Training and subsequently completed his Public Health specialisation in the UK. He has over one hundred publications in medical peer review journals, mostly focused on the epidemiology of infectious diseases. Dr. Ihekweazu is on the board of the NGOs: African Society of Laboratory Medicine, Child Health and Mortality Prevention Surveillance, Public Health Foundation of Nigeria, Health Watch Foundation, Society for Family Health, Education as a Vaccine, and the Africa Policy Advisory Board of ONE. He was a TED Fellow and co-founded and delivered the TEDxEuston event from 2009 to 2019.