WASHINGTON President Bush has designated Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt, Utah's former governor, as part of the U.S. delegation to attend the 61st World Health Assembly of the World Health Organization this week in Geneva, Switzerland.
Leavitt and other participants will discuss everything from pandemic flu preparedness and vaccine access to climate change issues affecting health and female genital mutilation.
William Raymond Steiger, who worked as a special assistant to the secretary for international affairs at the Department of Health and Human Services, and Warren W. Tichenor, U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations in Geneva, also have been designated by the White House as delegates.
The assembly, convening Monday through Saturday, is the annual meeting of the World Health Organization's 193 member states. Delegates set policy for the WHO and approve the budget, according to organization representatives.
Princess Muna Al Hussein of Jordan, the organization's patron for nursing and midwifery in the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Region, and Desmond Tutu, archbishop emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa, are scheduled to speak on Tuesday.