Neglected tropical diseases

Dr Dominique Kyelem

In memoriam

It is with deep regret that we learnt of the passing of Dr Dominique Kyelem on 22 September 2013 after a long battle with cancer.

Dr Kyelem worked at various levels and sectors of the health system of his country Burkina Faso for more than 14 years. During the late 1990s, he established the Burkina Faso National Programme for lymphatic filariasis, which he successfully led until 2007. From 2007 until his untimely death, he was Programme Director for Neglected Tropical Diseases at the Task Force for Global Health in Decatur (Atlanta) Georgia, USA.

A consultant for WHO since 2001, Dr Kyelem had been supporting African countries to eliminate lymphatic filariasis and was a member of several advisory committees.

Throughout his career, he worked tirelessly in combating neglected tropical diseases.

We have all lost a good friend and a dedicated public health expert” said Dr Lorenzo Savioli, Director of the WHO Department of Control of Neglected Tropical Diseases. “We’ll miss Dominique’s smile – a smile that will stand as a memory of his kind heart.

On behalf of WHO, we wish to join colleagues in extending our sincere condolences to his wife Regine, his 3 daughters and to his family and friends in Burkina Faso.

The global neglected tropical diseases community will remember Dr Kyelem as a passionate young scientist whose wonderful work was cut short at such an early age.

Dr Kyelem holds a medical degree from the University of Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso), a Master of Public Health from the University of Heidelberg (Germany) and a PhD from the University of Liverpool (United Kingdom).