Bangladeshi vaccine scientist wins Magsaysay Award

Sunbd Desk || Published: 2021-08-31 14:14:23 || Updated: 2021-08-31 14:14:23

Dr Firdausi Qadri, a Bangladeshi scientist who helped develop a cheap oral vaccine against cholera won Magsaysay Award, the Asia’s equivalent to the Nobel Prize.

A Pakistani microfinance pioneer and a Filipino fisherman were also got the Magsaysay Award this year, according to a press release issued in Dhaka on Tuesday.

Dr Firdausi Qadri, 70, is working at the International Centre for Diarrhoeal Disease Research, Bangladesh (ICDDR,B).

She had a “key role” in creating more affordable vaccines to combat cholera and typhoid, the Manila-based award foundation said in a statement.

It said Dr Firdausi Qadri, was one of five recipients of the Ramon Magsaysay Award — named after a Filipino president killed in a plane crash — for her “life-long devotion to the scientific profession” and “untiring contributions to vaccine development”.

She was also cited for her leading role in a mass vaccination effort in Rohingya refugee camps in Bangladesh’s south-eastern district of Cox’s Bazar in recent years that prevented a cholera outbreak.

The disease causes acute diarrhoea and spreads through contaminated food and water.

Dr Firdausi Qadri was also cited for her efforts to build up Bangladesh’s scientific research capacity.

“I’m overwhelmed, extremely delighted but also humbled,” Qadri said in a video message shared by the foundation.

The Ramon Magsaysay Award was established in 1957 to honour people and groups tackling development problems.

It was held virtually this year after the event was cancelled in 2020 due to  Covid-19  pandemic.

Source: BSS

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