Dr. Devendra Khandait

Dr. Devendra Khandait India Country Lead - State Health Policy

India Country Lead - State Health Policy, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation;

Devendra leads the state health policy efforts in the India country office of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He leads the policy and advocacy efforts in the area of Human resources for health, vaccines, infectious diseases (Tuberculosis and neglected tropical diseases). Devendra provides oversight to the foundation’s strategic relationship with the national government in BMGF priority areas. He leads the foundation engagement outside UP and Bihar.

Devendra is a medical doctor (MBBS and MD) and trained public health specialist with 20 years of management and leadership experience with large health and development programs in India. He has worked very closely with government (technical, administrative and political leaders) at sub district, district, big cities, state and national level, in the field of Immunization, Health System strengthening, Human resource for health, Disease surveillance, Maternal and Child Health and Nutrition.

He led the design and development of Immunization Technical Support Unit supporting the MOHFW, Govt. of India.  As a part of the BMGF team that launched the UP integrated delivery program, Devendra’s key role was to develop the operating structure of UP Technical Support Unit supporting to Government of Uttar Pradesh and to initiate and develop the foundation’s engagement with GOUP and various key partners in the state. He played an important role in supporting development of GOI’s India Newborn action plan, which plans to bring down NMR to single digit by 2030.  He is a member of multiple national and international task forces on the issue of maternal and child health. He has led the engagement from BMGF side for the design and delivery of courses in the area of health and nutrition for phase II and III batches for LBSNAA.  

Prior to joining the BMGF, he worked for World Health Organization’s National Polio Surveillance Project India (NPSP) for 11 years in various positions, and his last role there was that of a National Team Leader for Polio Surveillance. He led polio eradication efforts in Bihar, Western UP, Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, and Maharashtra. Some of his pioneering initiatives like Kosi operational plan for reaching the most access comprised areas in polio eradication, new born tracking and high risk approach in Bihar and Mumbai are replicated in the different polio endemic areas in the world. He is responsible for expanding the environmental surveillance for polio eradication in India. He led the disease surveillance reviews with the help of different stakeholders in south east Asia.

For few years, he worked as faculty in Medical College. He facilitated the courses for senior professionals in Public Health in multiple international and national institutes- including Center for disease control -CDC Atlanta, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Lal Bahadur Shastri National Administrative Academy Mussoorie (LBSNAA), IIHMR, IIPH etc. He completed the “Global flagship leadership course on Health System Strengthening and sustainable financing- The challenge of Universal Health Coverage” organized by World Bank Group and Harvard University in Washington DC. He has authored more than 30 research papers in peer reviewed journals.

He is closely associated with NGOs working towards upliftment of tribal population in Satpura mountains. 

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