Before joining WHO, Elizabeth Iro had more than 30 years of experience in public health in the Cook Islands and regionally. As Secretary of Health of the Cook Islands, she implemented health reforms to strengthen the country’s health system. These include developing the country’s National Health Roadmap 2017-2036, the National Health Strategic Plan 2017-2021, and the Health Clinical Workforce Plan. She had previously served as the country’s Chief Nursing Officer and Acting Director of Hospital Health Services. For the first 25 years of her career, she was a staff nurse, midwife and charge midwife at hospitals in the Cook Islands and New Zealand.