Winnie Mpanju-Shumbusho

Winnie Mpanju-Shumbusho

Former Assistant Director General for HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria and NTDs - World Health Organization / Member - Panel for a Global Public Health Convention

Dr Winnie Mpanju-Shumbusho is a former World Health Organization (WHO) Assistant Director General (ADG), responsible for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria, Neglected Tropical Diseases. She is a global health leader whose merit, track record and thought leadership are widely recognised.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as the WHO’s Assistant Director General for HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria and Neglected Tropical Diseases until her retirement in 2016. In this capacity she led WHO's work in prevention, control, impact-mitigation, country support, inter-country collaboration and global partnerships to combat top killer diseases and achieve the Millennium Development Goals, notably MDG6. Her leadership also ensured effective transition of WHO’s work from the MGDs to SDGs agenda. She also played a key role in mobilizing political commitment, resources and action needed to combat HIV/AIDS, TB, Malaria, NTDs; and building resilient health systems; and played a key role in the founding of the Global Fund.

Previously, she served as Director and Senior Adviser to the ADG’s Office and concurrently directed the WHO’s Office for Global Fund Partnership and Technical Cooperation, including WHO’s technical support to countries, that facilitated eligible countries’ access and utilisation of more than 10 billion USD from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria and health systems strengthening.

Earlier Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as Director of the WHO’ Global HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections Programme, during which led the development of the first-ever Global Health Sector Strategy for HIV/AIDS; provided thought leadership and guidance for development of the first ever Guidelines for Scaling up Antiretroviral Therapy in Low Resource Settings; and co-founded the WHO 3by5 Initiative.

Prior to joining WHO, Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as Director General of the Commonwealth Regional Health Community Secretariat for East, Central and Southern Africa(CRHCS-ECSA) (predecessor to the East, Central and Southern Africa Health Community Secretariat), where she spearheaded policies and mobilised political commitment, partnerships, regional expertise-sharing and trainings; and considerable resources to tackle the Region’s public health priorities. She led the development of the first ever CRHCS-ECSA Strategic Plan and transformed the profile of the ECSA Health Community into a key international health player in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Earlier Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho served as Head of the University of Dar-es-salaam’s Department of Community Health; and as Senior Lecturer & Consultant Paediatrician at University of Dar-es-salaam Muhimbili College of Health Sciences.

During this time, she also served as chief public health adviser to the Ministry of Health of Tanzania. She was co-founder of various national public health programmes; member of the Tanzania National Urban Water Authority and Treasurer of the Medical Association of Tanzania.

She also served as International Monitor of multi-country clinical trials for medicines and vaccines, including the first ever Malaria Vaccine (SPF66) Clinical Trial and Artemether Clinical Trial; all on behalf WHO and TDR.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho is a former Board Chair of the RBM Partnership to end Malaria; former Board member of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria and was a key player in the Global Fund’s creation. She is a Co-Chair of the Lancet Commission on Malaria Eradication; member of the Panel for a Global Public Health Convection, (established in the wake of Covid19 & other pandemics); and Board member of the University of California in San Francisco Institute for Global Health Sciences, MEI.

She has also served as a member of various international boards, including the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research & Training in Tropical Diseases Board, UNAIDS Programme Coordinating Board, UNITAID Board; and the International Corporate Health Leadership Council.

As Board Chair of the RBM Partnership to End Malaria, Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho steered the Partnership during a critical period of reinvigoration, reform and innovation needed to deliver on the ambitious objectives of the WHO Global Technical Strategy for Malaria (2016-2030) and the RBM Action and Investment to Defeat Malaria (2016-2030). Her leadership included strengthening the Partnership’s governance, management, resource mobilization, advocacy, communication and country support; and garnering affected countries and partners’ political and resource commitments to accelerate the fight to end malaria. Under her governance, the Partnership made key strides in political and resource commitments, including by Heads of States, such as the Commonwealth Heads of Governments Summit (2018) African and Asia Pacific Heads of States; increased funding from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria; strengthened advocacy and communications, including through the ‘Zero Malaria Starts With Me’ campaign; strengthened engagement of parliamentarians, civil society, the Global Fund and other donors; WHO, UNICEF and other multilaterals. Under her governance, the Partnership co-founded the “High burden to high impact” initiative, a country-led response, catalyzed by WHO and the RBM Partnership, to reignite the pace of progress in the global fight to end malaria. She was also key player in the first ever World Malaria Congress, held in 2018 and she provided significant thought leadership, conceptualization and political mobilization for the 2022 Kigali Summit on Malaria and NTDs, whose Declaration formed a landmark milestone in the fight against NTDs and Malaria towards delivery of the SDG targets.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho is a co-founder, board member and volunteer for the not-for-profit organization Adventures in Health, Education and Agricultural Development (AHEAD Inc.).

She has won various leadership, humanitarian and academic awards; and has published widely.

Dr Mpanju-Shumbusho holds a Doctor of Medicine Degree from the University of Dar-es-salaam (UDSM); Master of Public Health Degree from Tulane University, New Orleans, USA; Master of Medicine Degree (Paediatrics&Child Health) from UDSM and she is a Hubert H. Humphrey North-South Fellowship (A Fulbright Scholarship) Alumnus.