Dr. Poonam Khetrapal Singh
Deputy Regional Director
Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh is the WHO Deputy Regional Director for South-East Asia. She is the Principal Adviser to the Regional Director on all matters related to WHO Regional Policies, Management and Strategies. Dr Poonam Singh has overall responsibility for the Departments of Sustainable Development & Healthy Environment, Communicable Diseases, Family Health & Research and Health Systems Development. In addition, she oversees/supervises coordination of all Regional financial and human resource issues in this regard, as well as activities related to Public Information and Advocacy.
Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh provides leadership and guidance for all activities linked to resource mobilization in the Region for all programmes under different Department Directors and WHO Country Representatives. She is responsible for development of partnerships with public, private and non-profit organizations and international agencies and provides direction to WHO’s response to the UN system, intergovernmental bodies like ESCAP, ASEAN, SAARC, the World Bank, Asian Development Bank, diplomatic missions, foundations, civil society, etc.
Dr Poonam Singh began her career with WHO as the Executive Director, Sustainable Development and Healthy Environments at WHO Headquarters in Geneva, in June 1998. She was part of the Director- General’s Cabinet.
Prior to joining WHO, Dr Poonam Singh was a career member of the Indian Administrative Service since 1975. In that capacity she held several important portfolios with the Government of Punjab, including Secretary, Health, Family Welfare and Medical Education; Chairperson, Health Systems Development Corporation; Secretary, Finance (Budget and Accounts); Secretary, Personnel and General Administration; and Managing Director, Punjab Financial Corporation. She also worked as a Specialist in Population, Health and Nutrition in the World Bank.
Dr Poonam Khetrapal Singh has a Ph.D. in Public Health and is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians, Edinburgh.