Tuberculosis (TB)

Global TB Programme

Karin Weyer, Coordinator, Laboratories, Diagnostics and Drug Resistance (LDR)

Karin Weyer

Dr Karin Weyer is the Coordinator of the WHO Global TB Programme Unit for Laboratories, Diagnostics and Drug Resistance (LDR), where activities are focused on a) new policies and strategies for universal access to diagnosis, care and treatment of MDR-TB; b) Policy guidance on new TB diagnostics and laboratory procedures and standards; c) Coordinated technical assistance for the diagnosis, care and treatment of MDR-TB through partner agencies using the GLI, GLC, TBTEAM and WHO regional networks; and d) Monitoring of progress in scale up of laboratory capacity and MDR-TB response in countries. LDR also hosts the secretariat and core office of the Global Laboratory Initiative (GLI), a network of international partners focused on accelerated and expanded TB laboratory capacity development aimed at ensuring universal access to quality-assured diagnostic services for all TB patients.

Laboratory strengthening through the GLI is guided by WHO policy, norms and standards, and achieved through best-practice models that include rapid knowledge and skills transfer, a coordinated approach to country technical support, and synergized resource mobilization. The GLI also hosts the global WHO Supranational Reference Laboratory Network (SRLN), a core global resource for laboratory technical support and external quality assurance. Dr Weyer currently oversees the development of WHO policies on TB diagnostics and laboratory services and guides the strategic activities of GLI and the SRLN. She also directs the activities of a multi-partner, multi-country, five-year project funded by UNITAID, the Foundation for Innovative New Diagnostics (FIND) and other donors, and aimed at expanding and accelerating access to new TB diagnostics (EXPAND-TB) in 27 target countries.

Prior to joining WHO, Dr Weyer's career spanned 25 years of TB research at the South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC), covering the full spectrum of research (basic, epidemiological, operational). She managed and directed several national projects on drug-resistant and HIV-associated TB, as well as the SAMRC biosafety level three animal research and mycobacterial laboratories. She has published more than 50 peer-reviewed papers and other publications, including the WHO three-part series on TB laboratory services, and has served on several WHO committees and expert groups, including the Green Light Committee (GLC, also as chair) and the Strategic and Technical Advisory Group for TB (STAG-TB).