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ECTMIH 2017 hera highlights


The 10th European Congress on Tropical Medicine and International Health (ECTMIH 2017) took place in Antwerp last month (16-20/10/2017). The gathering brought together over 1500 scientists and experts from around the world to share updates in the field of tropical medicine and global health.

A number of hera partners came out to support and participate in ECTMIH 2017 including Kashi Carasso, Anne Buvé, Corinne Eisma, Ingeborg Jille-Traas and Wilbert Bannenberg. Dr. Anne Buvé (Institute of Tropical Medicine – Antwerp) was instrumental in the conference proceedings, serving as the Programme Chair over eight scientific committees. After the conference was over she commented that,

“When we were working on the programme, I could not help feeling that we were catering for two very different audiences: on the one hand the biomedical and clinical scientists and on the other hand professionals involved in health systems and policy. And I was thinking that our programme did not bridge these different worlds. However, I received from several people the comment that they had enjoyed having a “peek” at the other side of the fence. I strongly believe this is a strength of ECTMIH which we should exploit better in future editions: bringing together scientists of different disciplines and fostering interdisciplinary research.”

Key issues on the conference agenda included malaria, tuberculosis and HIV as well as other tropical and poverty-related health problems. There were a number of cross-cutting themes including diagnostic innovation, drug resistance and development, global research ethics and the role of social sciences in international health research.” [Link to the conference website and program.]

On day 3 of the conference, hera partner Kashi Carrasso presented findings from an interdisciplinary health system assessment conducted in Zimbabwe in 2016/2017. The study combined expertise in pharmaceuticals, human resources for health and results-based financing, and encouraged linkages between three key “health system building blocks.” [Download the presentation abstract.] For Carraso, a highlight from the conference was a session on improving quality of care, an issue that she says was also noted in the conference closing remarks. Carraso also mentioned attending some good sessions on the quality of medicines on the market and on access to medicines in developing and developed countries.

hera partner Ingeborg Jille-Traas presented a poster on supply chain management (SCM) for nutrition products in sub-Saharan Africa. The poster provides an overview of a study conducted with hera partners Ingeborg Jille-Traas and Ed Vreeke along with a team from UNICEF. One of the objectives of the study was to identify “bottlenecks and enablers ensuring successful integration of nutrition supply chains into national health commodity supply systems.” [Here is a link to the poster.]

At the close of this year’s event, the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (RSTMH) announced that the 11th ECTMIH in 2019 will be in Liverpool, UK. For more on the conference, you can visit the official 2017 website, facebook, twitter and flicker accounts.The hashtag for the conference is #ECTMIH2017.

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