Pakistan | WHO Representative

Dr Mohammad Assai Ardakani, WHO Representative in Pakistan

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Dr Mohammad Assai Ardakani, WHO Representative in PakistanDr Mohammad Assai Ardakani, WHO Representative in Pakistan

Dr Mohammad Assai Ardakani began his career in the public health sector in 1982 serving as Medical Officer, Primary Healthcare, with the Ministry of Health and Medical Education (MOHME) in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Prior to joining the World Health Organization in 2000, he held several managerial positions at the district, provincial and national levels within the MOHME, Islamic Republic of Iran. 

After joining WHO in 2000, Dr Assai served as Medical Officer for Primary Healthcare in WHO Pakistan from 2000 to 2004 and as Regional Adviser for Community-Based Initiatives with the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean Region from 2004 to 2012. Prior to his appointment as WHO Representative in Pakistan in 2017, Dr Assai served as Coordinator of Integrated Service Delivery at the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean from 2012 to January 2017. 

Dr Assai has authored numerous medical papers and is co-author of the Global WONCA Guidebook on the Contribution of Family Medicine to Improving Health Systems. Moreover, Dr Assai has had substantial inputs to service delivery and to the Healthy City Network Initiative in the Eastern Mediterranean Region.  

In 2018, Dr Assai was awarded lifelong membership of the Pakistan Academy of Family Physicians in recognition of his meritorious services in initiating the family practice programme in 12 model districts of Pakistan and for the tremendous support provided by WHO to medical universities for strengthening family medicine departments in 2017.

Dr Assai is Iranian national and holds a Doctorate in Medicine and Surgery from the Dow Medical College, Karachi, as well as a Masters in Public Health from the Dundee University of Scotland.

Key health-related statistics

Total population (000s) 189 900
Total health expenditure (% of general government expenditure) 4.7
Maternal mortality ratio (per 100 000 live births) 178
Primary health care centres and units (per 10 000 population) 0.5
Total life expectancy at birth (years) 66.4

Source: Country statistical profiles 2016

Pakistan country health profile

Regional Health Observatory

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