It is with profound sadness we share the passing of STAR Fellow Dr. Mohammad Nazim Samadi after battling COVID-19. Dr. Samadi served as the Senior TB Monitoring and Evaluation Technical Advisor in the National Tuberculosis Control Program in Kabul, Afghanistan, where he worked to continue to improve the lives of tuberculosis patients and was a leader in his field. He dedicated his life to making lasting improvements to the tuberculosis health system in Afghanistan, and he was continuously learning and applying his expertise so that he could help mentor others. That he continued this work in the face of a deadly global pandemic that ultimately claimed his life is an inspiration.
Dr. Samadi received his medical degree from Balkh Medical University in Balkh, Afghanistan. After his graduation, he worked for four years as a General Practitioner and volunteered as a National Health Information System Officer of Baghlan Province. In this capacity, Dr. Samadi contributed to the development of health information systems in Afghanistan. He was later promoted to the role of Provincial Advisor to the Baghlan Provincial Office under the USAID-funded Tech-Serve and Leadership, Management, Governance projects. In 2016, he worked as a Monitoring and Evaluation Officer for the USAID-funded Challenge TB project until he joined the STAR project in October of 2019. During his tenure with STAR Dr. Samadi assisted the National Tuberculosis Program in developing the first draft of its National Strategic Plan, as well as both the National and Provincial Annual Reports of 2019.
Dr. Samadi’s colleagues remember him fondly as a hero of the Afghan health system, sacrificing himself to save others. They reflect on his tremendous contributions to Afghan tuberculosis programs, which resulted in thousands of lives saved. Beyond his many notable professional achievements, colleagues remember his personality, describing him as enthusiastic, honest, dedicated, trustworthy, reliable, fair, honorable, and sincere. This is a tragic loss for the people of Afghanistan, the STAR family and for the global health community at large. STAR offers our deepest condolences to Dr. Samadi’s family, friends, and colleagues. He will be dearly missed.