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WHO Search Begins

The World Health Organization has begun its search for a new director general, Stat News reports.

Margaret Chan has run the organization since 2006, and was unopposed in her 2012 bid for a second term, which ends in mid-2017.

A number of former health ministers, including Ethiopia's Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus and France's Philippe Douste-Blazy, are already under consideration to take up the post next, Stat News says.

Tedros — Stat News notes that he is known by his first name — was nominated by executive council of the African Union, and he has served as both health minister and minister of foreign affairs for Ethiopia. In addition, he's been active in global health as the chair of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria, and the Roll Back Malaria Partnership.

Douste-Blazy, meanwhile, has also served as both minister of health and of foreign affairs for France and has been involved in global health himself, as he's served on the executive board of UNITAID.

Stat News says that the selection process may take some time as the WHO executive board will draw up a list of five candidates by its January 2017 meeting, and after interviews, three will be put forth for a vote by the full WHO membership during its annual general meeting.