Dr Gottfried Hirnschall, Director of Department of HIV/AIDS

12 May 2010

On 1 May 2010, Dr Gottfried Hirnschall started in his new position as Director of the HIV Department of the World Health Organization (WHO). In this role, Dr Hirnschall oversees the organization's HIV mandate to provide countries with vitally needed normative and policy guidance to deliver HIV services and build health systems.

From 1991 to 2000, Dr Gottfried Hirnschall coordinated WHO's support to countries in the area of child and adolescent health. He then joined the HIV Department to develop evidence-based policy recommendations on wide-ranging technical and strategic issues.

As Director for Partnerships, External Relations and Communications for WHO's "3 by 5" initiative, Dr Hirnschall engaged a broad range of partners, including people living with HIV, and thereby succeeded in mobilizing support for the unprecedented scale-up of antiretroviral therapy in low-income countries.

Between 2005 and 2007, he directed the Caribbean HIV programme of PAHO (Pan-American Health Organization), based in Trinidad and Tobago. He then served as WHO/PAHO Senior Adviser for Latin America between 2007 and 2009.

Throughout his career, Dr Hirnschall has given utmost importance to building consensus and fostering collaboration among partners, including the UN family, the Global Fund to fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria, the World Bank, bilateral partners, civil society organizations and other advocates.

Dr Hirnschall received a Medical Degree from the University of Vienna with a specialization in Family Health, and holds a diploma in Tropical Medicine from the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute. Dr Hirnschall also conducted special studies in Health Economics at the London School of Economics and Political Science and obtained a Master's degree in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins University.

Dr Hirnschall has completed the Epidemic Intelligence Service at the Centers for Disease Control in Atlanta, USA. He speaks English, German, French and Spanish.

For more information and interview requests, contact:

Tunga Namjilsuren
HIV/AIDS Department
Telephone: +41 22 791 1073