May 24, 2022 - World

WHO chief Tedros re-elected to second 5-year term

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during a press conference in December 2021 in Geneva.
World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus during a press conference in December 2021 in Geneva. Photo: Febrice Coffrini/AFP via Getty Images

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was re-elected to a second five-year term Tuesday after no other candidate challenged him for the post amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Why it matters: The pandemic has so far killed an estimated 6.2 million people worldwide and over 1 million in the U.S., though vaccines and other treatments have significantly slowed death rates in most parts of the world.

The big picture: The WHO under Tedros initially strongly advocated for wealthy nations to forgo booster shots due to a global vaccine disparity. A WHO advisory group later pushed for broad access to them.

  • He also recently criticized China's extreme "zero-COVID" strategy as being unsustainable. It significantly save lives but also led to food shortages.

Go deeper: Sweden recommends 5th shot for people at risk of severe COVID

Go deeper