Dr. Awa Marie Coll-Seck: A Global Voice for all Women
Are you drawn to the field of medicine and helping the countries of the world combat infectious diseases? If so, Dr. Awa Marie Coll-Seck’s achievements will be an inspiration to you.
Born in Senegal, Africa Dr. Awa Marie Coll Seck is a woman who is a leader in her field. She is a renowned scientist is the area of virology, infectious and tropical diseases. She has served her native country and other countries around the world. In 1989, she was appointed Professor of Medicine and Infectious Diseases at the University of Dakar and Chief of Service for Infectious Diseases at the University Hospital in Dakar. She was the Director of the UNAIDS Department of County and Regional Support for Africa, Asia, Eastern and Central Europe, and Latin American and the Caribbean from 1996-2001.
Thanks to leaders like Dr. Coll-Seck and others working within the Center for Disease Control, Senegal has experienced successes in disease control such as the following:
Accord to the Center for Disease Control (CDC)*
- 63% of households own insecticide- treated nets to prevent malaria.
- The number of children under 5 years old infected with malaria dropped 50% from 2008 to 2010.
- CDC support to Senegal’s national reference lab resulted in an expansion of existing HIV surveillance activities, enhanced data management, and analytic support.
- Global polio eradication activities contributed to the absence of polio cases in Senegal since 2010.
Background: After earning a degree in medicine from the University of Dakar in 1978, Awa Marie Coll-Seck served for more than ten years as a specialist in infectious diseases in leading hospitals in Dakar, Senegal and Lyon, France. She specialized in bacteriology and virology, infectious and tropical diseases. She also studied applied epidemiology and biostatistics in Annecy, France. In 2002, she served as president of the Assembly of the Ministries of Health of the West African Health Organization.
From 2001-2003, she served as Minister of Health and Prevention of Senegal and Director for Policy, Strategy and Research. From 2004-2011 she was the Executive Secretary of the Roll Back Malaria Partnership based in Geneva, Switzerland. She has been a coordinator, counselor, and trainer with the National AIDS Program and a member of the World Health Organization country team in Senegal. She is also a member of the WHO Advisory Group on the Ebola Virus Disease Response.
Awards: Dr. Coll-Seck has been honored with numerous professional and academic awards, including the Knight of the Order of Merit of the French Republic, Officer of the Order of Merit Senegalese; and Knight of the Order of Merit of Burkina Faso. She is an honorary member of the Academy of Sciences and Technologies of Senegal and is the author of more than 150 scientific publications.
See also BlackPast.org