Dr. Elizabeth Sinskey is the general-director of the World Health Organization (WHO) and has been for a decade at the beginning of Inferno. In the film adaptation, she will be portrayed by the Danish actress Sidse Babbet Knudsen.
At the age of nineteen, Elizabeth was told that she could not have children due to steroid hormones that she had taken when she was six that saved her life from ashtma. She grew with the hollowness, anger, and sadness of never being able to be a mother, even though the doctor had assured her that the time would make it better. Even at the age of 61, she still felt empty when she saw a mother with her baby.
While in med-school she had visited Venice with her fiancé; she had never told him about her infertility and when he made an innocent comment about a mobile he saw, she confessed the truth about her reproductive system which caused them to break up. Elizabeth never found love again and focused her life on the medicine.
After giving a lecture in New York two years before, Bertrand Zobrist called her to talk about the problems of world population, but as she replied with condoms being distributed in Africa, he realized that the WHO was not taking overpopulation seriously enough, and Elizabeth, afraid of what he might do to solve the issue, declared him her nemesis and had him followed all everywhere in the world, forcing Zobrist to go underground to create his plague: Inferno. After locating him in a bank in Florence, the WHO chased him, but Zobrist jumped from the Badia Tower. Dr. Sinskey got what he had stowed in the bank and asked Professor Robert Langdon to help her solve the clues.
She is first introduced in Langdon's hallucinations as the silver-haired woman wearing a veil and telling him to “seek and find.”
Elizabeth, in a poor health state, led a team of soldiers from ECDC to find Langdon who was accompanied by Sienna Brooks. As they fled Florence, she was contacted by the Consortium's provost and they joined forces to stop Zobrist's plague. Through one of the Consortium's emplyees, they discovered that Langdon was headed to Venice and the WHO sent people after them, managing to capture Langdon, but allowing Sienna to escape.
The soldiers took Langdon to the Consortium's ship, the Mendacium, where Elizabeth explained to him who she was, how she had recruited him a few days before to help her, how he had came in touch with Ignazio Busoni, who he had hoped would help him enter Palazzo Vecchio after hours, but Langdon no longer contacted her. Langdon then informed her that what they sought was not in St. Mark's but in a completely different country.
On board the windowless plane of the WHO, they flew to Istanbul. There, they discovered that Sienna had taken a private jet and left Venice shortly after they did.
Dr. Sinskey is described as beautiful, stately, and strong. She had a sternly set jaw, deep soulful eyes, and long, silver-gray hair that cascaded over her shoulders in ringlets.