Dr Soumya Swaminathan was most recently WHO’s Deputy Director-General for Programmes. A paediatrician and a globally recognized researcher on tuberculosis and HIV, she brings with her 30 years of experience in clinical care and research and has worked throughout her career to translate research into impactful programmes. Dr Swaminathan was Secretary to the Government of India for Health Research and Director General of the Indian Council of Medical Research from 2015 to 2017. In that position, she focused on bringing science and evidence into health policy making, building research capacity in Indian medical schools and forging south-south partnerships in health sciences. From 2009 to 2011, she also served as Coordinator of the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases in Geneva.
Dr Swaminathan holds M.B.B.S. from Armed Forces Medical College (India) and M. D. from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, along with a Diplomate of National Board from National Board of Examinations. She subsequently held Post Doctoral Medical Fellowship in Pediatric Pulmonology at the Children’s Hospital Los Angeles, Keck School of Medicine at the University of Southern California.
She is an elected Foreign Fellow of the US National Academy of Medicine and a Fellow of all three science academies in India. She has previously been on several WHO and global advisory bodies and committees, including the WHO Expert Panel to Review Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property, the Strategic and Technical Advisory Group of the Global TB Department at WHO, and most recently was Co-Chair of the Lancet Commission on TB.
Born: 2 May 1959 (age 62 years), Chennai
Spouse: Ajit Yadav
Education: Armed Forces Medical College Pune, Keck School of Medicine, AIIMS Cohort Study
Children: Shreya Yadav, Akshay Yadav
Siblings: Nitya Swaminathan, Madhura Swaminathan
Parents: M. S. Swaminathan, Mina Swaminathan