An Independent Panel... Led By Insiders

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WHO is enlisting an independent panel to evaluate its global COVID-19 response, the agency announced yesterday.

The evaluation, the WHO emphasized, is a response to a request from member states in May—not to scrutiny from the US, whose President Trump has accused the agency of kowtowing to China.

2 female former heads of state—former Prime Minister of New Zealand Helen Clark and former President of Liberia Ellen Johnson Sirleaf—will lead the panel and choose its members.

Both women already have strong ties to the WHO, Reuters reports.

Calling for balance, Lawrence Gostin of Georgetown Law cautioned that the panel must not be an "inside job," nor should it pander to conspiracy theories.

"What is really vital is we have truly independent experts from a variety of disciplines…" he told Reuters.

The panel will present interim findings in November and a more robust report next May.