Former CDC official now PAHO-WHO deputy director
Dr Isabella Danel, former official of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), was sworn in last week as the new deputy director of the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), Regional Office for the Americas of the World Health Organization (WHO).
Danel will occupy PAHO-WHO's second-highest post, with a portfolio that includes disaster preparedness and relief, external relations and partnerships, corporate communication, strategic planning and budgeting, and performance monitoring. She will also serve as PAHO-WHO's representative to Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico and as acting director in the absence of PAHO-WHO Director Carissa F. Etienne.
Prior to joining PAHO-WHO, Danel spent two decades with the United States CDC, specialising in maternal mortality and international public health. Her posts included chief of the Field Support Branch of the Division of Reproductive Health, associate director for programme development at the CDC's Center for Global Health, director of the CDC Regional Office for Central America and Panama in Guatemala, deputy chief of the Pregnancy and Infant Health Branch of the Division of Reproductive Health, and Epidemic Intelligence Officer at CDC's Behavioral Epidemiology and Demographic Research Branch. She also spent six years at the World Bank, as senior public health specialist in the Latin America and Caribbean regional office, on secondment from CDC.
Earlier in her career, Danel was a clinical research fellow at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, a technical advisor to the Ministry of Health of Nicaragua, and an attending physician at Cook County Hospital in Chicago, Illinois.
Danel has written numerous scholarly articles and book chapters on maternal mortality and other public health subjects. She holds a medical degree from Albany Medical College in New York and a master's in community health in developing countries from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.