The Wellcome Trust – Bloomsbury Centre for Global Health Research held its seventh highly successful scientific meeting on the shores of Lake Malawi from 21-23 March 2017. Attended by more than 80 participants, the meeting brought together the Centre’s fellows, their sponsors, supervisors and collaborators from around the world and across scientific disciplines together with Centre steering group, representatives from the Wellcome Trust and colleagues and collaborators from Malawi.
The meeting’s strength lies in the breadth and depth of the research projects and trials presented and their varied geographical locations. The result was a wide-ranging, diverse and thought provoking programme of the highest quality spanning HIV/TB and infection, maternal and child health and nutrition, mental health, eye health, helminths, non – communicable diseases and health systems. The meeting and its location provided a fantastic opportunity and ideal environment in which to share research, forge new working relationships and develop future collaborations.
Hosted by Professor Liz Corbett, Wellcome Senior Research Fellow based in Malawi the Programme included a dedicated session to the range and depth of research taking place in Malawi. Through a combination of detailed in depth presentations and shorter, dynamic speed talks the meeting was able to learn about the Malawi-Liverpool-Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme, MEIRU – Malawi Epidemiology and Intervention Research Unit, the MORDOR trials – Mortality Reduction After Oral Azithromycin: Mortality Study and the STAMP trial.
We were delighted that Charles Mwansambo, Chief of Health and Andrew Dimba, Senior Disease Control Officer from the Malawi Ministry of Health and Branwen Hennig and Bibi Oni from Wellcome were able to join us and contribute to a very productive and enjoyable meeting.
Comment on Wellcome Trust Bloomsbury Centre Scientific meeting
Hazel Dockrell, Special Advisor on Overseas Programmes in Africa, LSHTM
The Wellcome Trust funded Bloomsbury Centre for Global Health Research held its two yearly scientific meeting at Club Makokola, Mangochi, in Malawi, from 21-23 March 2017, with 82 participants. As always, this was a stimulating and impressive meeting that demonstrated the excellence of the projects being undertaken by both WT fellows and clinical PhD students. These are not focussed in a few centres but based worldwide – most in Africa but also in India, Vietnam, the Solomon Islands, Peru. The meeting also showcased research in Malawi at the College of Medicine and the Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Major Overseas Programme, and at MEIRU, based in Lilongwe and Chilumba. The breadth of topics is a feature of this Centre, with sessions covering HIV, TB/HIV, TB, helminths and allergy, maternal and child health, child health and nutrition, eye infection, and non- communicable diseases including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and mental health as well as cross-cutting topics such as health systems. As the Centre includes St Georges, UCL, Queen Mary and the Institute of Psychiatry as partners, senior members of these institutions also provide supervision, advice and mentorship. The Centre’s fellows are innovative, operating in diverse settings and have found solutions to some unexpected problems including how to catch a lemur to take a blood sample.