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Head of Gates Foundation's global health program leaving

Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
Tachi Yamada with Indian child during polio vaccination drive. Dr. Yamada has directed the Gates Foundation's largest department for five years.

Dr. Tachi Yamada is leaving his position in June as head of the Gates Foundation’s global health program.

That’s big news primarily because the Gates’ global health program is so big, the largest program at the world’s largest philanthropy, accounting for more than half of the $3 billion the Gates Foundation spends every year trying to make the world a better, healthier and more equitable place.

So what does it mean that Tachi is leaving an organization that rivals (some say exceeds) the influence of the World Health Organization when it comes to setting the global health agenda?

I think it probably means a lot less than when his two predecessors left.

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The host of the Humanosphere community is Tom Paulson, who spent 22 years reporting on science and medicine at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Tom was one of the first daily news reporters to cover the topic of “global health” (a much-debated label which he discusses the merits of on the Humanosphere website).
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