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Contain This: The Latest in Global Health Security
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Contain This: The Latest in Global Health Security

Author: Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security: Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade

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Produced for the Australian Government's Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, this fortnightly podcast will bring you insightful information and updates on what is shaping the future of global health.
22 Episodes
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Welcome to Episode 21 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, hosted by Head of Centre, Robin Davies.Our Centre is based in Canberra on Ngunnawal land, and we work with partner governments in Southeast Asia and the Pacific to anticipate, avert and arrest infectious disease threats. Part of the way we do this is to tap into knowledge from Australia's premier research institutions. Today, we hear about some new research that has the potential to change the way public health programs are planned in Australia and our region. Kristy Crooks is an Aboriginal woman of the Euahlayi nation. She's working as an Aboriginal Program Manager with the communicable disease team at Hunter New England Health. She's also undertaking a PhD on how to engage First Nations people in public health emergencies. Peter Massey is a Clinical Nurse Consultant and program manager for health protection. Also with Hunter New England Health. He's worked in the Pacific, particularly Solomon Islands in PNG on infectious disease control and tuberculosis recently has been working with Kristy and other Aboriginal health workers and researchers on pandemic preparedness and response. For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au.Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec and @AusAmbRHS.This is our final episode for 2020. Thank you for tuning in, we look forward to sharing more episodes with you in the New Year. 
Welcome to the second episode in our series exploring issues related to COVID-19 vaccines in our region, as we plan Australia's $500 million Regional Vaccine Access and Health Security Initiative. In the week before the Global Health Security Agenda Ministerial Meetings in November this year, the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security hosted a side event on COVID-19 vaccine financing. The Centre represents Australia as one of the leads on the Sustainable Financing for Preparedness Action Package. Why this side event on vaccine financing? Well, when safe and effective vaccines for COVID do become available, they will be needed for both preparedness and response. There might be sufficient funding available in the short term, but not enough vaccines to go around. In the medium term, we might have the reverse problem, insufficient funding, and too many COVID-19 vaccines. So the purpose of this event was to bring together some key partners in vaccine financing. There are already several mechanisms established, including the COVAX Facility, and recent announcements from the multilateral development banks for vaccine financing. In this space, we see opportunity, and as always, risk. So we brought together six panelists from around the world to discuss what successful coordination looks like, with our principal goal being that developing countries get equitable, affordable and timely access to safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines. We heard from Aparnaa Somanathan, the Practice Manager for Health, Nutrition and Population for the East Asia Pacific Region at the World Bank. Patrick Osewe, Chief of the Health Sector Group at the Asian Development Bank, and Saul Walker, the Deputy Director for Vaccines, Therapeutics and Diagnostics at the UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office. Santiago Cornejo from Gavi has recently been appointed as the Director of the Country Engagement for the Office of the COVAX Facility. And for a pharmaceutical industry perspective, we were joined by Adrian Thomas, Global Vice President of Global Health at Johnson and Johnson.We are pleased to bring you the highlights of our hour long discussion.  For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au.Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec and @AusAmbRHS.We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.
Welcome to episode 20 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security. This episode is hosted by Camilla Burkot, a senior adviser with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s Vaccine Access Taskforce, which will oversee the Australian Government’s recently announced Regional Vaccine Access and Health Security Initiative. This initiative will help to ensure that people across the Pacific and Southeast Asia are able to access safe, effective and affordable COVID-19 vaccines when they become available by supporting both procurement of vaccine doses and strengthening immunization policy and delivery pathways in our region. On today’s show, we will discuss the issue of vaccine uptake in the Indo-Pacific region with two experts in the fields of vaccine development and delivery from Australia and Indonesia. We'll also hear from the field with the story of a senior immunisation nurse from Tonga.Camilla will begin by talking to Professor Julie Leask from the Susan Wakil School of Nursing and Midwifery at the University of Sydney. She's a member of the Australian Regional Immunisation Alliance, visiting professorial fellow at the National Centre for Immunization Research and Surveillance and holds a range of advisory roles with the World Health Organization. In addition, Julie has recently been appointed to the Expert Advisory Group that will guide the new Regional Vaccine Access and Health Security Initiative.You will then hear from Sister Afu Tei about her experience as an immunisation nurse in Tonga. Sister Afu Tei is the Supervising Public Health Sister, Reproductive Health Project Co-ordinator and National EPI Co-ordinator in Tonga. Lastly, Camilla speaks with Professor Amin Soebandrio is a lecturer in clinical microbiology at University’s Indonesia and chairman of the Eijkman Institute for Molecular Biology, a nonprofit research body under the Ministry of Research and Technology and National Agency for Research and Innovation located in Jakarta. He is also honorary professor at the University of Sydney Medical School has played a key role in building strong relationships between the Indonesian and Australian medical research communities. At the beginning of the pandemic, Professor Amin oversaw the laboratory that analyzed samples from the earliest COVID-19 cases in Indonesia. Now, the institute’s work has turned towards vaccine development. For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au. Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec and @AusAmbRHSWe air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
Welcome to Episode 19 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, hosted by Head of Centre Robin Davies. Today on the show Robin talks to Dr David Nabarro, a British medical doctor who has been at the forefront of international organisations as a special adviser to the United Nations and the World Health Organization.Since 2009, he has been the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary General for Food Security and Nutrition. He oversaw the global effort to contain the 2014-15 Outbreak of Ebola as Special Envoy of the United Nations Secretary-General.In 2018, he was appointed Professor at the Institute of Global Health Innovation at Imperial College London. And most recently he was named as one of six Special Envoys from the Director-General of the World Health Organization to help respond to the COVID-19 Pandemic.Robin is joined by panellists from around the region, who you'll hear ask questions during the episode. For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au.Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec and @AusAmbRHS.We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
Welcome to Episode 18 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, hosted by Dr Lara Andrews. Today on the show, Lara speaks to Gillian McKay and Matelita Seva-Cadravula, on the topic of sexual and reproductive health and rights during a health emergency.For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec and @AusAmbRHSWe are an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
Welcome to the third episode of our Indo-Pacific Health Leaders Series. Today, Australian Ambassador for Regional Health Security Dr Stephanie Williams speaks to Dr Josephine Herman, Secretary of Health in the Cook Islands.Dr Josephine is a physician who holds a Masters in Public Health, a Diploma in Obstetrics and Gynaecology and a PhD in Epidemiology from the University of Auckland.She was appointed as the Secretary of Health for the Cook Islands in June 2018 and is currently the vice-chair of the Pacific Heads of Health.For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au.Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec and @AusAmbRHS.We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
This week Dr Lara Andrews, Acting Director at the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security talks to Dr Roopa Dhatt, Executive Director of Women in Global Health.Roopa served as the President of the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations and is now a practicing primary care physician in Washington D.C.In this episode, Roopa talks about her identity as an Indian-born American woman shaped her motivation to help found the advocacy group Women in Global Health more than five years ago.On the 17th of September, Women in Global Health held a virtual summit on the sidelines of the United National General Assembly where countries around the world, including Australia, reaffirmed their commitment to the Sustainable Development Goal number 5 - to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls – and gender responsive leadership during COVID-19 response. Enjoy this episode with Lara Andrews talking to Roopa Dhatt.For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.auConnect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec. We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates. Enjoy,Contain This Team
Today on the show, we have Aalisha Sahu Khan and Professor Patrick Reading. Aalisha is the Head of Health Protection at the Fiji Ministry of Health and Medical Services, where she oversees a broad portfolio that includes environmental health, health emergencies and climate change and communicable disease control. Patrick is a scientist and educator at the WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza based at the Doherty Institute at the University of Melbourne. In this episode, Patrick talks about the Doherty Institute’s partnership with The Pacific Community, SPC, to increase laboratory capacity in Pacific Island countries to test for the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.In addition, SPC has been working with the WHO Joint Incident management Team lab cell and the Pacific Islands Society for Pathology have been working on a protocol whereby up to 4 or 6 samples could be tested in in a single GeneXpert cartridge to scale up testing. Patrick will give us an update on Doherty’s support for this development.Aalisha reflects on the work that has gone into expanding the Fiji Centre for Disease Control's capacity to be able to test for the SARS-CoV-2 virus and what having domestic capacity has meant for preparedness and response. For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.auConnect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec. We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates. Enjoy,Contain This Team
Welcome to the second insightful episode of our special Indo-Pacific Health Leaders series, where Ambassador for Regional Health Security, Dr Stephanie Williams, talks to the new Secretary for Australia's Department of Health, Dr. Brendan Murphy. They discuss his leadership and the challenges during the early outbreak of COVID-19 in Australia during his time as Australia’s Chief Medical Officer.
This week we launch a special series where Australia’s Ambassador for Regional Health Security, Dr Stephanie Williams, interviews leaders in the Pacific and Southeast Asia about how they have faced being a leader and health challenges during the current COVID-19 crisis.These frank conversations begin with Dr Takeshi Kasai, the Regional Director for the Western Pacific Office of the World Health Organization. As Regional Director, Dr Kasai is responsible for convening and communicating with partner governments on the health and well-being of 1.9 billion of the world's population from Fiji in the East, to China and Vietnam in the West and Japan to the North. A physician by training, Dr. Kasai has been involved in responding to outbreaks and crises, including avian influenza in Hong Kong and Japan, the 1995 Kobe earthquake and the SARS crisis. He has worked for WHO for more than 15 years and was instrumental in developing and implementing the Asia Pacific strategy for emerging diseases and public health emergencies, which guides member states ongoing improvements to readiness and response.
In this week’s episode we discuss Vietnam’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and antimicrobial drug resistance with Dr Guy Thwaites, Director of the Oxford University Clinical Research Unit and Wellcome Trust Major Overseas Program in Vietnam, Dr Thu Anh Nguyen, Country Director, Woolcock Institute and Clinical Senior Lecturer at University of Sydney and Dr Gregory Fox, Project lead for the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security’s AMR V-RESIST project in Vietnam and Clinical Academic Lead (Research) for the Faculty of Medicine and Health at Cumberland Campus.Since this interview was recorded, Vietnam has recorded a large outbreak in the coastal city of Da Nang. As discussed by our guests, the government is taking early action when cases are identified. In the case of Da Nang they imposed an immediate lockdown and have launched widespread testing of the city’s 1.1 million residents.
In this episode we talk to Dr Leanne Robinson and Dr Moses Laman and discuss the emergence of drug resistant malaria in PNG, and the work they are involved in through the STRIVE PNG project; a project that builds on decades of close working ties between PNG and Australian scientists, and an initiative that the Indo Pacific Centre for Health Security is proud to have helped establish. Leanne is one of Australia's leading vector borne disease researchers. She is the head of the Vector Borne Disease and Tropical Public Health Group at the Burnet Institute in Melbourne. She has spent 10 years living and working in PNG. In parallel to her groundbreaking research, Leanne is committed to developing national capacity to conduct research across the countries of the Indo Pacific. Moses is a principal Research Fellow, and the current head of the Vector Borne Disease Unit at the Papua New Guinea Institute for Medical Research. He is a young affiliate of the Third World Academy of Science, a general paediatrician and adjunct senior research fellow at the School of Medicine and pharmacology at the University of Western Australia. In the past 10 days, the total number of COVID-19 cases in PNG has risen past 60. As the country works to contain the outbreak. The PNG government is assessing the situation and alongside the WHO, the Australian Government and other development partners, is bolstering emergency response efforts. This interview was recorded before the current increasing COVID-19 cases in PNG. It shows how strong relationships have been built between Australian institutions and the PNG government to anticipate and arrest infectious diseases within the country. 
Welcome to Episode #10 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security and hosted by Adam Craig. On the episode we have Elizabeth Iro - Chief Nursing Officer, World Health Organisation and Michele Rumsey - Director, World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Nursing, Midwifery & Health Development at University of Technology Sydney.Elizabeth, a Cook Islander, is the Chief Nurse at the World Health Organisation in Geneva. Prior to joining the WHO, she served as the Secretary of Health in the Cook Islands and before that was the country’s Chief Nurse. In these roles she spearheaded health system reform with a focus on planning and workforce development. Nursing is in Elizabeth’s blood. In this episode she speaks passionately about the role nurses from around the globe are playing, under increasingly stressful conditions, to ensure health systems continue to function and health security for all is achieved.Michele, also started her career in nursing. She took this experience to the global stage and now as an academic, advises on international health care and policy in the areas of human resources for health, health system strengthening, capacity development, stakeholder participation and regulation. Michele is the Director of the WHO Collaborating Centre for Nursing, Midwifery and Health Development based at UTS. The Centre is the only one of its kind in the South Pacific. Under Michele’s leadership the Centre has carried out 50 projects in 25 countries. She was awarded the UTS Human Rights Award in 2014 for her work in the South Pacific.This episode celebrates 2020, The International Year of Nurses and Midwives. Elizabeth and Michele reflect on what this year means to the nursing profession, they talk about the challenges of being a nurse during a pandemic and propose actions that ought to be taken to address issues as broad as chronic work force shortages, achieving universal health coverage, gender inequity and the impacts of power imbalances in nursing and health care more broadly.For more information on the State of the World’s Nursing Report, click on the link belowhttps://www.who.int/publications/i/item/nursing-report-2020For more information on a WHO Report related to the nursing workforce recommended by the guests, please click on the link below:https://www.who.int/hrh/com-heeg/en/  For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au. Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec.  We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.  Enjoy, Contain This Team
Welcome to Episode #9 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security and hosted by Adam Craig.On the episode we have Dr Mark Schipp and Dr Anna Okello. In 2011 Mark was appointed Chief Veterinary Officer of Australia. He was also appointed as Australia’s Delegate at the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) where he is also the elected President of the OIE World Assembly. Mark leads Australia’s national responses to emergency animal disease incursions. He works to strengthen the veterinary services of countries in our region so they are able to detect and respond to emerging infectious diseases of concern to both human and animal health. He has been active in leading Australian agriculture’s response to the global threat of antimicrobial resistance.Anna is the Research Program Manager of Livestock Systems at Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), providing Animal Health and One Health expertise to the portfolio. Since graduating with a veterinary degree from Melbourne University in 2002, the majority of Anna’s career has been spent working in the veterinary public health and livestock development sectors, including 10 years researching zoonotic Neglected Tropical Disease control in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia. Anna completed a PhD in political science (public health policy) at the University of Edinburgh’s Centre for African Studies in 2012, and has worked in various project management and technical advisory roles for international NGOs, the Australian government, the World Health Organization and the University of Edinburgh.In this episode, Adam, Mark and Anna discuss biosecurity, wet markets and their respective roles in Australia's response to disease risk. For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au. Connect with us on Twitter via @CentreHealthSec.We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team 
Welcome to Episode #7 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security and hosted by Adam Craig. Today on the show we have Lauro Vives and Michael Nunan. Specializing in international affairs, regional cooperation, trade reforms, poverty alleviation and ICT for Development challenges, Lauro has been a trusted advisor to the Asian Development Bank, the World Bank, the United Nations, USAID and the Millennium Challenge Corporation for the past 15 years. Lauro is now Director of International Development for Canada-based health management consulting company Gevity ConsultingMichael is the Project Director at Tupaia, working on health resource mapping across Asia-Pacific.Tupaia is a data aggregation, analysis and visualisation platform that works to map health systems in the Indo-Pacific region. This is used to strengthen services, manage projects and help governments fairly distribute resources. You can learn more here https://info.tupaia.org/about-us/ In this episode, Adam, Lauro and Michael discuss health in the Pacific region, including challenges, resources and goals for the future.For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au Connect with us on Twitter via @centrehealthsecWe air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
Welcome to Episode #6 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security and hosted by Adam Craig. Today on the show we have Dr. Rob Grenfell and Debbie Eagles. Rob is the Director of Health and Biosecurity at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, Australia’s National Science Agency, or the CSIRO as it’s known. Rob is a qualified public health physician and GP, with almost 30 years’ experience working across health in the public and private sectors. Debbie is the Deputy Director of the Australian Centre for Disease Preparedness within the CSIRO and located in Geelong, Victoria.The Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security works closely with CSIRO to build capacity in our region. The study of zoonotic diseases has been thrown into the spotlight since the outbreak of COVID-19. In this episode, we discuss why that is.In this episode we also feature a brief discussion with Andy Yombo, a CSIRO counterpart in Port Moresby working on the African Swine Fever outbreak in PNG.For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit out website - https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.auConnect with us on Twitter - https://twitter.com/centrehealthsec/We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
Welcome to Episode #5 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security and hosted by Adam Craig. In this episode we have Adam Kamradt-Scott and Sara Davies. Adam is an Associate Professor at the University of Sydney specialising in global health security and international relations. His research and teaching explore how governments and multilateral organizations respond to adverse health events such as epidemics and pandemics, as well as emerging health and security challenges.Sara is an  Australian Research Council Future Fellow an a Professor at the Centre for Governance and Public Policy at Griffith University. Her research interests revolve around global health governance, health diplomacy and the prevention of sexual violence in conflict situations.  Sara has published widely. She is the author of three books including Disease Diplomacy, which she co-authored with Adam Karmadt-Scott.For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website - https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au Connect with us on Twitter - https://twitter.com/centrehealthsec/We air an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates. Enjoy,Contain This Team 
Welcome to Episode #4 of Contain This, brought to you by the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security. We’re excited to be relaunching the podcast. There’s never been a more important time to discuss health security.In this episode, we introduce Dr. Stephanie Williams, Australia’s Regional Ambassador for Health Security. You can learn more about Steph and her role as Ambassador here - https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.au/ambassador We also introduce Adam Craig, our new host. You’ll be hearing Adam’s voice in every episode of Contain This. You can learn more about Adam and his background here - https://research.unsw.edu.au/people/mr-adam-thomas-craig-0In this episode, Steph and Adam speak with the Executive Producer of Contain This Rachel Mason Nunn. Rachel is also the Host of Good Will Hunters, and CEO of Good Will Media and Communications. The team discusses what the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security is doing in response to Covid-19 and how the health security of the Indo-Pacific region has been magnified during this time. They also discuss what you can expect in future episodes of Contain This. For more information about the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security, visit our website -  https://indopacifichealthsecurity.dfat.gov.auConnect with us on Twitter - https://twitter.com/centrehealthsec/We’ll be airing an episode every fortnight so make sure you subscribe to receive our updates.Enjoy,Contain This Team
What happens when we become sick and how does good health rely on a strong system? On this episode we look at the challenges a young health system faces in a developing context. Our Adviser, Camilla Burkot interviews Dr Josh Francis, the Chief Investigator for the research project STRONG TL-  to talk about the health needs of Timor-Leste, superbugs that are not super and more on the STRONG TL projected funded by the Australian Aid program through the Indo-Pacific Centre for Health Security. 
In June 2018 the US FDA approved the drug moxidectin for the treatment of River Blindness. How did this drug with no market and no chance of profit get through FDA approval? This podcast is a tale of two cities; two people on opposite sides of the world came together to produce a new drug to treat the disease. Mark Sullivan, Founder & Managing Director of Medicines for Global Health and John Reeder, the Director of the Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases tell us how this orphaned drug came to be and how it will contribute to the elimination of River Blindness. 
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