Feature Stories

Meet team WHO: Dr Gilson Paluku, Immunization Officer

A medical doctor with experience in over 15 countries in Africa and the Americas, Dr Paluku was Chief Medical Officer for North Kivu province in his native Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) before joining the World Health Organization (WHO) back in 2001.

Beating childhood cancers through early detection and treatment

On one of Naomi Otua’s regular trips to visit her grandson James in the town of Assin Fosu in Ghana’s Central Region, she noticed something was seriously wrong. The 10-year-old’s eyes were jaundiced and he had lost a significant amount of weight. Worried, Otua decided to take James to the Suhum Government Hospital.

COVID-19 widens routine immunization gaps in Africa

Around 7.7 million African children missed out on vital first doses of Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis, Measles and Polio vaccines in 2020. The nearly 10% rise in missed vaccinations on the previous year in Africa was driven by disruptions to health services by the COVID-19 pandemic, new data by the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and World health Organization (WHO) show.

Home-based care boosts Nigeria’s COVID-19 fight

Lagos – When Zainab Olowoyo got COVID-19, she was one of thousands of people residing in the populous Lagos State whose case was not severe enough for her to be sent to the nearest isolation unit. Instead, Olowoyo received hospital-level care in her own home through a Home-Based Care programme implemented by the state government in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO). She had a smooth recovery and was cleared of the virus within 10 days.

Meet team WHO: Dr Fiona Braka, Team Lead, Emergency Operations

A public health professional with an MPH from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Dr Fiona Braka has worked for World Health Organization (WHO) for the past 18 years supporting countries, including her native Uganda, Ethiopia and Nigeria, to build capacity to deliver vaccines. She is now bringing her vast experience in polio eradication and broader immunization to support the continent’s fight against disease outbreak emergencies and humanitarian crises.