The Aga Khan University is pleased to announce that Dr Zulfiqar Bhutta, Founding Director of the Centre for Excellence in Women and Child Health, has been presented with the 2014 WHO Ihsan Doğramacı Family Health Foundation Prize.
Awarded by WHO and the jury of the Ihsan Doğramaci Family Health Foundation, the prize honours those globally recognized for their services in the field of 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 The Hospital for Sick Children, received the prestigious award at a special plenary awards ceremony during WHO’s 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 to 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 honored 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 Aga Khan University and, many colleagues among the public health community in Pakistan, who provided us the opportunity to undertake this work,” said Dr Bhutta.
The Prize was established in 1980 on the initiative of and with funds provided by its founder Professor Ihsan Doğramacı, a notable child health specialist from Turkey and a founding signatory to the WHO Charter. It is presented every two years to those globally recognized for their services in the field of family health.