Dr Bhutta receives WHO Family Health Foundation Prize

Karachi: Dr Zulfiqar Bhutta of Aga Khan University (AKU) and The Hospital for Sick Children, Canada has been presented with the 2014 WHO Ihsan Dogramaci Family Health Foundation Prize for contributions to global family health.

Dr Bhutta Founding Director of the Centre for Excellence in Women and Child Health at AKU and Co-director of the Centre for Global Child Health at Sick Children, received the prestigious award at a special plenary awards ceremony during WHO’s 67th World Health Assembly in Geneva.

Dr Bhutta has been at the centre of much of the global work on child and newborn survival, and health for a number of years. In Pakistan, he has been a driving force in improving maternal and child health through his work with the state-run Lady Health Workers programme and in advocating for key changes in national and provincial health policies.

Globally, Dr Bhutta’s main focus has been on the development and implementation of evidence-based interventions, through numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals, notably, The Lancet’s series on nutrition, primary care, child and newborn survival, and community-based newborn care.

Recently, he co-authored The Lancet Every Newborn Series along with Professor Joy Lawn, Director of the MARCH Centre at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, UK, and Save the Children, which paints the clearest picture of a newborn’s chance of survival.

He is also actively involved in several other initiatives: co-chair of the Countdown to 2015 initiative and a member of the WHO Independent Expert Review Group that provides oversight and monitoring of progress towards the Millennium Development Goals 4 to reduce child mortality and 5 to improve maternal health.

“I am greatly honoured and humbled and underscore that the award recognizes the work of many in our programme, especially the young people who are future leaders for Pakistan. I am also extremely grateful to the leadership at the AKU and, many colleagues among the public health community in Pakistan, who provided us the opportunity to undertake this work,” said Dr Bhutta.

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