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WHO works to reform itself after fumbling Ebola response

World Health Organization says it is working on reforming itself after fumbling Ebola response

WHO works to reform itself after fumbling Ebola response

LONDON (AP) -- The World Health Organization's chief Dr. Margaret Chan says the agency is working to reform itself in the wake of its bungled response to last year's Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

Chan said new protocols were being developed for how the agency functions during health emergencies. The agency has previously proposed creating a specialized center within WHO to handle emergencies that would be self-managed.

Charles Clift, a public health expert at the London policy institute Chatham House, was unsure if adding more layers of bureaucracy to an already bloated WHO might help.

Despite WHO's repeated vows to hold itself accountable, Clift was unconvinced, citing the panel it commissioned to assess its response. The panel's report last month failed to identify a single person or even department at WHO that was responsible for the agency's botched efforts to contain Ebola.

"Everything was fudged," he said of the panel report. Some of the WHO leaders in Africa blamed for the slow response to Ebola have since been moved to other countries. "Getting sacked doesn't really happen at the UN," he said.

Chan acknowledged that WHO was slow and that she was "absolutely accountable" for everything the agency does.

Updated : 2021-09-23 19:42 GMT+08:00