Keiji Fukuda

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Keiji Fukuda (福田 敬二, born c.1954)[1] is an American physician with expertise in influenza epidemiology. In March 2009, Fukuda was appointed Assistant Director-General for Health, Security and Environment ad interim for the World Health Organization (WHO), and he held this position from September 2010 to November 2016.[2] The media have referred to him as the WHO "flu chief" during the 2009 swine flu outbreak.[3] Fukuda came to the WHO in 2005. He first worked as Coordinator of the Global Influenza Program from 2006 to 2008 and was then appointed its Director. Before joining the WHO in 2005, Fukuda was Chief of the Epidemiology Unit, Influenza Branch at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.[4] After retiring from the WHO in 2016, he joined the University of Hong Kong as a Professor.


External video
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Speech by Keiji Fukuda: GISAID “Breaking Through Influenza Information Walls”, Federal Republic of Germany, 2011[5]
Interview with Keiji Fukuda: H7N9 virus 'one of the most lethal so far', CNN, 2013[6]
Interview with Keiji Fukuda: Ebola response needs to "scale up,", CBS News, 2015[7]

Fukuda's parents were physicians. His father immigrated from Japan to Vermont to complete an anesthesia fellowship there, and stayed on to work at the Barre hospital.[8]

Keiji Fukuda attended Oberlin College for his BA, which was temporarily interrupted by a nine-month backpacking excursion through Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. He studied medicine at the University of Vermont College of Medicine, completed in 1983. Part-way through medical school, he spent six months working with indigenous tribes in southern India, which helped further his interest in international health. He went on to complete his internal medicine residency at Mount Zion Hospital in San Francisco, and then a Master of Public Health at University of California, Berkeley. For one year, he worked in San Francisco Bay Area in clinics that focus on leprosy and tuberculosis, and then moved to Atlanta, GA where he spent two years studying in the Epidemiology Intelligence Service training program at the CDC.[8]

In 1994 he led a committee that revised the definition of chronic fatigue syndrome,[9] which has since become the most widely used clinical and research definition of the illness.[10] He has focused on influenza since 1996, leading teams that investigated outbreaks of avian influenza and of SARS.[1]

On April 28, 2009 he pointed out that it was already too late to contain the 2009 swine flu outbreak.[11]

He currently resides in Hong Kong.


  • Avian influenza A (H5N1) virus and 2 fundamental questions. Briand S, Fukuda K. J Infect Dis. 2009 Jun 15;199(12):1717-9.
  • The pandemic influenza vaccine challenge. Kieny MP, Fukuda K. Vaccine. 2008 Sep 12;26 Suppl 4:D3-4.
  • WHO Rapid Advice Guidelines for pharmacological management of sporadic human infection with avian influenza A (H5N1) virus Schünemann HJ, Hill SR, Kakad M, Bellamy R, Uyeki TM, Hayden FG, Yazdanpanah Y, Beigel J, Chotpitayasunondh T, Del Mar C, Farrar J, Tran TH, Ozbay B, Sugaya N, Fukuda K, Shindo N, Stockman L, Vist GE, Croisier A, Nagjdaliyev A, Roth C, Thomson G, Zucker H, Oxman AD; WHO Rapid Advice Guideline Panel on Avian Influenza. Lancet Infect Dis. 2007 Jan;7(1):21-31. Review.
  • Health benefits, risks, and cost-effectiveness of influenza vaccination of children. Prosser LA, Bridges CB, Uyeki TM, Hinrichsen VL, Meltzer MI, Molinari NA, Schwartz B, Thompson WW, Fukuda K, Lieu TA. Emerg Infect Dis. 2006 Oct;12(10):1548-58.
  • Different approaches to influenza vaccination. Fukuda K, Kieny MP.N Engl J Med. 2006 Dec 14;355(24):2586-7.
  • Influenza-associated deaths among children in the United States, 2003-2004. Bhat N, Wright JG, Broder KR, Murray EL, Greenberg ME, Glover MJ, Likos AM, Posey DL, Klimov A, Lindstrom SE, Balish A, Medina MJ, Wallis TR, Guarner J, Paddock CD, Shieh WJ, Zaki SR, Sejvar JJ, Shay DK, Harper SA, Cox NJ, Fukuda K, Uyeki TM; Influenza Special Investigations Team. N Engl J Med. 2005 Dec 15;353(24):2559-67.
  • Influenza vaccination among the elderly in the United States. Thompson WW, Shay DK, Weintraub E, Brammer L, Cox NJ, Fukuda K. Arch Intern Med. 2005 Sep 26;165(17):2038-9; author reply 2039-40
  • Prevention and control of influenza. Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). Harper SA, Fukuda K, Uyeki TM, Cox NJ, Bridges CB; Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). MMWR Recomm Rep. 2005 Jul 29;54(RR-8):1-40. Erratum in: MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2005 Aug 5;54(30):750..
  • Values for preventing influenza-related morbidity and vaccine adverse events in children. Prosser LA, Bridges CB, Uyeki TM, Rêgo VH, Ray GT, Meltzer MI, Schwartz B, Thompson WW, Fukuda K, Lieu TA. Health Qual Life Outcomes. 2005 Mar 21;3:18.
  • An economic analysis of annual influenza vaccination of children. Meltzer MI, Neuzil KM, Griffin MR, Fukuda K. Vaccine. 2005 Jan 11;23(8):1004-14.
  • Prevention and control of influenza: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). Bridges CB, Winquist AG, Fukuda K, Cox NJ, Singleton JA, Strikas RA; Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. MMWR Recomm Rep. 2000 Apr 14;49(RR-3):1-38; quiz CE1-7.


  1. ^ a b Reynolds, Gretchen (November 7, 2004). "The Flu Hunters", The New York Times Magazine, pp. 36–43, 52, 68, 92–93. Retrieved on 2013-02-17. "At 49, Fukuda, the top influenza epidemiologist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looks...reassuring."
  2. ^ WHO Biography [1]. Retrieved on 2009-09-15
  3. ^ McGroarty, Patrick (April 29, 2009). "WHO says swine flu moving toward pandemic level", Associated Press. Retrieved on 2009-04-30.
  4. ^ Fukuda, Keiji, and Colmey, John (January 12, 1998). "'This is serious': A leading influenza expert says Hong Kong's "bird flu" still carries potentially wide-ranging risks", Time 151 (1). Retrieved on 2009-04-30.
  5. ^ "GISAID Symposium 2011" (PDF). Federal Ministry of Food and Agriculture (Germany). 11 October 2011. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  6. ^ "WHO: H7N9 virus 'one of the most lethal so far'". Cable News Network. 26 April 2013. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  7. ^ "Ebola response needs to "scale up," World Health Organization official says". CBS Interactive. 10 August 2014. Retrieved 6 September 2017.
  8. ^ a b Pasanen, Melissa (spring 2005). "Walking the tightrope: For Keiji Fukuda, MD '83, being one of the leaders of the fight against influenza means balancing the quiet work of science and the occasional loud warning call", Vermont Medicine, pp. 26–30. Retrieved on 2009-04-30.
  9. ^ Brody, Jane E. (December 21, 1994). "Clearing Up Confusion on Fatigue Syndrome", The New York Times, p. C10.
  10. ^ Afari N, Buchwald D (2003). "Chronic fatigue syndrome: a review". Am J Psychiatry. 160 (2): 221–36. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.160.2.221. PMID 12562565.
  11. ^ "'Too late' to contain swine flu". BBC. 2009-04-28. Retrieved 2009-04-28.

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