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ARIA welcomes guests from the region to Communicable Disease and Immunisation Conference 2022 in Sydney

ARIA with support from the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security and other Australian partners were pleased to welcome public health practitioners from Fiji and Timor-Leste at the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) Communicable Diseases & Immunisation Conference 2022 in Sydney last week.

We were thrilled to have Dr Rachel Devi and Sister Leti Volavola from Fiji, Dr Celia Gusmao Dos Santos and Nevio Sarmento from Timor Leste attend the conference, meet with Australian collaborators and share learnings from the COVID-19 vaccine rollout and other key vaccine preventable disease issues. Maria (Merry) Niha from the Timor-Leste Ministry of Health also presented key learnings in her presentation: 'Preventing and mitigating COVID-19 in the resourcelimited setting of Timor-Leste;.

ARIA Steering Commitee Member, Associate Professor Josh Francis also provided insights to a session on 'Successful Community Engagement for Communicable Disease Control' reflecting on Menzies School of Health Research programs in Timor-Leste. Associate Professor Francis leads programs in Timor-Leste focused on teaching, capacity building, health systems improvement and operational research. This work in Timor-Leste has engaged communities in health system changes and significantly impacted national policy, guidelines and strategy.

Thank you to our partners and to our guests for joining us and sharing your perspectives. 

Colleagues from TL featured with Menzies team and Prof Paul Kelly
Colleagues from Timor-Leste pictred here: Dr Celia Gusmao Dos Santos (far left) with Australia's Chief Medical Officer, Professor Paul Kelly,  Anthony Draper, Nevio Sarmento, Associate Professor Josh Francis and Merry Nahi. Photo credit: Associate Professor Josh Francis


Fiji and Timor-Leste colleagues featured here with Prof Kristine Macartney
Colleagues from Fiji and Timor-Leste pictured here with NCIRS Director, Professor Kristine Macartney. Photo credit: Dr Rachel Devi