The London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine has won the Gates Award for Global Health, and will receive $1 million in prize money.
The award was established by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to recognise organizations that have made an outstanding contribution to improving global health, especially in resource-poor settings. The winners are chosen by a jury of international health leaders from more than 100 nominations from around the world, and the award is administered by the Global Health Council. The School is both the first academic institution to win the award and the first British winner.
'For more than a century, the London School has trained the some of the world's most outstanding public health leaders', said Dr. Tachi Yamada, president of the Gates Foundation's global health program. 'The School's commitment to leadership and cutting-edge research has made an immeasurable contribution to health in developing countries'.
Professor Sir Andrew Haines, Director of LSHTM, comments: 'This award is excellent news for the School and a testament to the hard work, commitment and expertise of our staff and students.
'We are delighted and proud to be honoured for the work we do which includes researching diseases that particularly afflict disadvantaged people around the world - such as malaria, TB, HIV/AIDS but also increasingly cancer, cardiovascular disease and mental disorders. Equally important is our work to build health systems and train health personnel in low income and post-conflict countries.
'This award could not have come at a better time for us as it coincides with plans to expand the School's popular distance learning programme. This programme has helped many talented people around the world to acquire the skills and expertise they need to improve public health. The prize money will enable us to extend that opportunity to many more through development of new courses and provision of scholarships'.
With its outstanding performance in the universities' 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (a national exercise to evaluate the quality of research in all UK higher education institutions) and its flourishing teaching programmes, the School is a leading institution in the United Kingdom and worldwide for research and postgraduate education in global health. There are 3,500 postgraduate students from around 120 countries studying in London or by distance learning. Staff are involved in research collaborations in more than 100 countries. The School has a strong commitment to supporting the development of teaching and research capacity in low-income countries, with staff currently based at sites in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.
Sir Andrew will receive the award on behalf of the School in Washington, D.C., United States, at a special ceremony during the Global Health Council's Annual International Conference on Global Health on 28 May 2009.
For further information, or to interview Sir Andrew Haines, please contact Lindsay Wright or Gemma Howe at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine Press Office on firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com or +44 (0) 207 927 2073/2802
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