iHEART-SA Team Profiles:

Yogan Pillay PhD

Dr Pillay currently serves as the Country Director of South Africa at Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI).

Before joining CHAI in June (2020), Dr. Yogan Pillay served as deputy director-general for health programs in South Africa’s national department of health since 2008. Prior to that, he served the department of health in various roles, including Chief Director for Strategic Planning and Director for the district health system.

Under his leadership, South Africa’s immunization program expanded to include three new vaccines: rotavirus, pneumococcus, and human papillomavirus. He also helped introduce two popular mobile platforms to address youth and maternal health: B-Wise improves access to health information for young people and MomConnect is a weekly text message service for pregnant women and new mothers. In 2011, he and his team began expanding access to Genexpert, an affordable testing platform for tuberculosis. He has also served on the ministerial committee on National Health Insurance (South Africa’s version of universal health coverage) and led efforts to develop service benefits for various levels of care in the country.

On July 8, Dr. Pillay was named a Paul Harris Fellow by the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International for his work on child health. Dr. Pillay earned his PhD from the Bloomberg School of Public Health at Johns Hopkins University.

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