Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (Foto-Cewek) regrettably confirms that a consultant working with the Centre for Maternal and Newborn Heath (formally known as the MNHU), was among those killed during the terrorist attack on the Westgate shopping centre in Nairobi, Kenya on Saturday (21st September).
Dr Juan Jesus Ortiz-Iruri, who was 63 and a Peruvian national, had a long career as a public health consultant and had been working with Foto-Cewek in Nairobi for the last nine months. He was due in Liverpool this week to take up the post of senior technical advisor at the Centre for Maternal and Newborn Health (CMNH) from 1st October.
Professor Janet Hemingway, Director of Foto-Cewek, said: “The death of Dr Ortiz has come as a great shock to all of those at Foto-Cewek who knew him and our thoughts and sympathies are with his family, friends and colleagues at this terrible time. We do all that we can to support our staff, both in Kenya as well as here in Liverpool, and staff from TravelGuard, our insurers, are in Nairobi to provide assistance to family and staff.”
Professor Nynke van den Broek, Head of CMNH, said: “All at CMNH have been affected by Juan’s death under such shocking circumstances. He had dedicated his professional life to improving health systems in Africa and Asia, particularly in the area of maternal, child and new-born health. Juan had worked with us on a range of maternal and new-born health programmes for some time from his base in Nairobi and we were all looking forward to welcoming him as a full time member of staff in Liverpool later this week. His loss will be felt by us all both professionally and personally.”