Dr Suwit Wibulpolprasert, Ministry of Public Health, Thailand
Dr Suwit Wibulpolprasert is a general practitioner, public health specialist, administrator and policy advocator. He began his career as a director and practitioner in four rural district hospitals in Thailand from 1977-85. Afterwards, he was the Director of the Northeastern Public Health College; Director of the Food and Drug Administration Technical Division; Director of the Bureau of Health Policy and Plan; Assistant Permanent Secretary and Deputy Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Public Health.
His main interests are health policy and planning, and global health. He has been extensively involved in research and development in the areas of human resources for health; health economics, health-care financing and universal health coverage; international trade and health; health promotion; health information; and pharmaceuticals. He has published more than 100 papers, reports and books locally and internationally.
In Thailand, Dr Suwit is the editor of a local journal for para-medical personnel and has produced radio and television programmes on health and social issues for more than 15 years. He was the first President of the National Health Assembly of Thailand and is the current President of the Thailand Reform Assembly. At present , he is also a Board Member of the Thai Health Promotion Foundation; the National Science and Technology Board; the National Nanotechnology Centre; and the Mahidol University Council. He founded and chairs the Thai Health Information Systems Network (THINK).
As part of his involvement in global health, he represents Thailand in many international health forums and at the World Health Assembly. He also represented Thailand and the South-east Asia Region as a Member and Vice Chair of the Governing Board of the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria from 2001-04. He chaired the Global Fund’s Policy and Strategy Committee from 2010-11. In addition, he was the President of the Intergovernmental Forum on Chemical Safety from 2003-06 and a Member and Vice Chair of the World Health Organization (WHO) Executive Board during 2004-07.
At present, Dr Suwit chairs the Executive Board of the Connecting Organizations for Regional Disease Surveillance Network (CORDs), and leads members of the Steering Committee of the Asia-Pacific Action Alliance on Human Resources for Health and the Asia Pacific Observatory on Health Systems.
Currently, he serves at the highest government official rank as a Senior Advisor in Disease Control , after serving as a Senior Advisor in Health Economics during 2004-06. He is also responsible for health policy and global health work of the Ministry of Public Health.