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WHO Tries To Bolster Fragile Funding With New Foundation CEO

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Medial workers carry a patient infected with the coronavirus onto an ambulance at an elderly care facility in Ulsan, South Korea, Monday, Dec. 7, 2020. South Korea's health minister said Monday that the Seoul metropolitan area is now a "COVID-19 war zone," as the country reported another 615 new infections and the virus appeared to be spreading faster. (Kim Young-tae/Yonhap via AP)

(AP) — The World Health Organization is hoping to strengthen its funding base with the appointment of a CEO to a foundation intended to bring in private donations. Anil Soni will join the new WHO Foundation in January after eight years with the multinational pharmaceutical Viatris. This year’s global coronavirus pandemic, as well as the Trump administration’s withdrawal from the U.N. health body, has exposed WHO’s fragile funding base. The organization relies largely upon voluntary contributions from member nations as well as a handful of large foundations. The incoming Biden administration has pledged to rejoin the organization, but Soni says WHO needs more funding flexibility.

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