Awake At Night podcast

So Much More that We Can Do to Save Lives Right Now

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What is a day like in the life of the epidemiologist heading the global response to COVID-19? 

For the past 21 months, WHO COVID-19 Technical Lead Maria Van Kerkhove has been working around the clock with thousands of scientists to try to keep all of us safe.

In this personal and insightful episode, Maria shares her memories of the first moment she became aware of COVID-19 – before most of the world knew it existed – and then she takes us behind the scenes of WHO’s early steps to tackle the crisis. 

Maria also talks about what, throughout the entire pandemic, motivates her every day to get out of bed and care for others, at the expense of her family life.

 “When I went to China in February 2020… he [my child] was really scared. So, he thought I wasn't coming home and I think everything changed for him. You know, it was this mysterious new virus. Everything was shutting down. People were scared, there was an ominous nature about it and he thought I wasn't coming home. So, for him, that was really scary,” she says.

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