Plenary Speakers

Dr John Amuasi

John Amuasi is Executive Director, African Research Network for NTDs and Co-Chair of the Lancet One Health Commission. Dr. Amuasi is a member of faculty at the Global Health Department of the School of Public Health, KNUST and also Group Leader of the Global Health and Infectious Diseases Research Group at the Kumasi Center for Collaborative Research in Tropical Medicine which hosts the Secretariat of the African Research Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases (ARNTD) of which he is the Executive Director.

Dr Amuasi trained as a physician at the KNUST School of Medical Sciences, and later graduated from the University of Minnesota School of Public Health, USA, with post-graduate degrees terminating in a PhD in Health Research and Policy. He also served as head of the R&D Unit at the 1,000-bed Komfo Anokye teaching Hospital in Kumasi, Ghana for three years from 2007-2010.

Dr Amuasi has consulted for several international organizations and is passionate about research that focuses on improving health systems, services and outcomes, including policy analyses using both primary and secondary data in low and middle-income countries. His research currently involves field epidemiologic studies on cryptosporidiosis, malaria, snakebite and other neglected tropical diseases. Dr Amuasi is also at the fore-front of global efforts towards addressing emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases and serves as an Executive Committee member of the African Coalition for Epidemic Research, Response and Training (ALERRT). Dr Amuasi co-chairs the Lancet One Health Commission.

Professor Daniel Bausch

Professor Bausch is the Director of the United Kingdom Public Health Rapid Support Team (UK-PHRST), a joint effort by Public Health England and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine to respond and conduct research to prevent and control outbreaks of dangerous infectious diseases around the world.

He is trained in internal medicine, infectious diseases, tropical medicine, and public health. Professor Bausch specialises in the research and control of emerging tropical viruses, with over 20 years’ experience in sub-Saharan Africa, Latin America, and Asia combating viruses such as Ebola, Lassa, hantavirus, and SARS coronavirus.

He places a strong emphasis on capacity building in all his projects and has a keen interest in the role of the scientist in promoting health and human rights.


Hilary Bower

Hilary Bower is part of the UK Public Health Rapid Support Team at LSHTM.

She is an epidemiologist with extensive field experience in Africa and Asia and a deployable member of the UK Public Health Rapid Support Team, established by LSHTM and Public Health England to respond to, carry out research in, and build capacity for epidemic disease and outbreak response.

Her research interests are emerging and epidemic infectious diseases and improving outbreak responses and interventions.


Dr Carlos Navarro Colarado 

Dr Carlos Navarro Colarado is UNICEF's Principal Advisor for Public Health Emergencies. He leads all UNICEF’s global work in outbreak preparedness and response, and has lead the UNICEF response to the current Ebola outbreak in DRC from the field since its declaration.

He has previously worked at CDC as an emergency epidemiologist (2010-2017), as an independent consultant on health and nutrition in emergencies (2005 -2010), and in a number of field assignments and coordination positions for ACF and MSF (1994-2004).

He has completed dozens of field emergency and outbreak assignments in field and leadership positions. Carlos’ research work in emergency response has focused on outbreak response and on the treatment and prevention of acute malnutrition.

He started the research department of ACF in 2000, and has been involved in the design and implementation of operational research in emergency settings since 1997, obtaining an MSc from LSHTM and PhD from Aberdeen University.

Victoria Gill

Victoria is a science reporter for the BBC.

She covers science, tecnology and environmental stories and often pops up on BBC Radio news bulletins delivering short science reports.



Dorcas Gwata

Dorcas Gwata is a public health specialist working with young people and families affected by gang culture in London, as well as an experienced global mental health specialist working across Sub-Sahara Africa with special interests in gender violence, substance misuse, common mental health disorders, non-communicable diseases, migration, cross-cultural psychiatry and youth health. Dorcas is also a visiting Lecturer at LSHTM and Kings College London and has an MSc in Public Health from LSHTM. 

Her current research explores the links between youth violence, inequalities and mental health for minority groups in London. She has carried out research on the Zimbabwean Friendship Bench model and she used her learnings to inform her work with young people and families involved in gangs in London.

Dorcas is a Mental Health Advisor at THET and also mentors young graduates, being passionate about supporting more women of colour in leadership. Dorcas is a Mary Seacole Leadership Awardee and was recently awarded the International Human Rights Award by the University of Surrey.  

Dr Karel Gyselinck

Dr Karel Gyselinck is a medical doctor with a master’s in public health at ITM Antwerp and 29 years’ experience of.

After working as a general practitioner in Belgium for two years, he worked for five years in Zambia as hospital practitioner in a rural district hospital and as District Director. Thereafter for 12 years he was the medical director of the international NGO Memisa Belgium.

Then he joined the Memisa Board. Since 2006 he is working as a public health expert at the Belgian Technical Cooperation (now Enabel) in Brussels and is a guest lecturer at ITM Antwerp and different universities (ULB, UIA and Ugent). From 2010 – 2018, Karel was the chair of Be-cause Health, the Belgian platform of International Health.

Since 2017 he is the president of FESTMIH, the European Federation of Societies of Tropical Medicine and International Health.

Professor Janet Hemingway

Janet Hemingway is Professor of Vector Biology at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. She is also a Senior Technical Advisor on Neglected Tropical Diseases for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, and has 38 years’ experience working on the biochemistry and molecular biology of specific enzyme systems associated with xenobiotic resistance.

Professor Hemingway was appointed the Director of LSTM in 2001 and stepped down on 1st January 2019, having overseen a period of exceptional growth of the organisation.  This included the awarding of Higher Educational Institution Status & Degree Awarding powers to LSTM.  This new status will facilitate expansion of both the research and teaching activities going forward. 

Professor Hemingway was awarded the Commander of the British Empire (CBE) for services to the Control of Tropical Disease Vectors 2012. We look forward to hosting Professor Hemingway at the Congress.


Professor Peter Hotez

Peter J. Hotez, MD, PhD is the founding dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine and a professor of Pediatrics and Molecular Virology & Microbiology at Baylor College of Medicine, where he is also the Texas Children’s Hospital Endowed Chair of Topical Pediatrics.

He also services as Director of Texas Children’s Hospital Center for Vaccine Development, and the Baker Institute Fellow in Disease and Poverty at Rice University.

Professor Hotez’s research focuses on developing vaccines for neglected tropical disease such as hookworm infection, schistosomiasis, and Chagas disease. These diseases affect hundreds of millions of children and adults worldwide.

A renowned global health advocate, Professor Hotez co-founded the Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases in 2006 as part of the Clinton Global Initiative. The Global Network for Neglected Tropical Diseases provides access to essential medicines for more than 450 million people.

He has also written op-eds and editorials for The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, and the Huffington Post. In 2014 he was selected by the US State Department and White House and US Science Envoy, focusing on science and vaccine diplomacy for the Middle East and North Africa.

Professor Shabbar Jaffa

Professor Shabbar Jaffa is Head of Department of International Public Health, Chair of Epidemiology at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine.

Previously, he was Professor of Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM).

His background is in global health trials of management strategies for HIV-infection and associated co-infections.

Currently, Professor Jaffa is focused on studies on the prevention and management of HIV-infection, diabetes and hypertension, funded by the NIHR and EU.


Professor David Lalloo

Professor David Lalloo is the Director of the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM).

After spending three years in Papua New Guinea, he undertook clinical and laboratory research in Oxford before joining LSTM in 1999.

He has focused on clinical trials in the tropics, particularly in HIV related infections, malaria and envenoming. He currently has collaborations and studies in a number of countries including Malawi, Uganda, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and South Africa.

He holds an appointment as Honorary Consultant at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital and is Clinical Director of the Tropical Medicine Directorate and Director of the Wellcome Trust Liverpool Glasgow Centre for Global Health Research and Wellcome Trust Clinical PhD programme.

Through the Centre and PhD programme, he is instrumental in identifying and supporting young UK clinicians interested in tropical research and building scientific capacity overseas, working closely with the Malawi Liverpool Wellcome Trust Clinical Research Programme.


Dr Heidi J. Larson

Dr Heidi J. Larson, PhD, is Professor of Anthropology, Risk and Decision Science and Director of The Vaccine Confidence Project at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine where she is in the Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology. She is also Clinical Professor of Health Metrics Sciences and Director of European Initiatives at the Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation at the University of Washington, Seattle, USA.

Dr Larson’s research focuses on the analysis of social and political factors that can affect uptake of health interventions and influence policies. Her particular interest is on risk and rumour in health programmes, particularly around vaccines and immunisation.  Professor Larson previously headed Global Immunisation Strategy and Communication for UNICEF and chaired the GAVI Advocacy Task Force.

She served on the FDA Medical Countermeasure (MCM) Emergency Communication Expert Working Group, and is Principle Investigator of the EU-funded (EBODAC) project on the deployment, acceptance and compliance of an Ebola vaccine trial in Sierra Leone.

The Vaccine Confidence Project has developed multiple metrics to measure population confidence in vaccines, from a survey-based Vaccine Confidence Index™ to temporal analysis of media and social media, and qualitative research to understand the drivers of vaccine reluctance and refusal. 

The research also includes tracking the ecology of rumours and transnational influences on public trust in vaccines. The Vaccine Confidence Project has been named a WHO Centre of Excellence on addressing Vaccine Hesitancy. 

Dr Diogo Martins

Dr Diogo Martins is a medical doctor from Portugal with extensive experience in global health and international development. He is the Policy & Advocacy Lead for the Snakebite priority area at the Wellcome Trust. Over the next seven years, this new programme will invest £80 million to transform the way snakebite treatments are researched, developed and delivered, to make them safer, more effective and accessible for all.

His responsibility is to shape, develop and implement a policy, advocacy and public affairs strategy for the Snakebite portfolio, in collaboration with regulators, manufacturers, donors, governments and multilateral agencies, including the United Nations (UN) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

Prior to joining the Wellcome Trust, Dr Martins worked at the World Health Organization (WHO) in the Climate Change Unit of the Department of Public Health, Environmental and Social Determinants of Health; and as a Public Health medical resident in the northern region of Portugal.

Dr Martins is Doctor of Public Health (DrPH) candidate at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) and a seminar leader for ‘Issues in Public Health’ and ‘Health Systems’. His research interests include Planetary Health, Sustainable Development and Neglected Tropical Diseases (NTDs). 

Dr Matshidiso Moeti 

Dr Matshidiso Moeti from Botswana is the first woman WHO Regional Director for Africa  and has, over the past four years, led the transformation of the WHO Regional office for Africa into an accountable and results-driven organisation.

Over this period WHO AFR has focused on improving health security, universal health coverage and supporting countries in the implementation of SDG-3. Strong partnerships have been developed with various bilateral and multilateral health development partners. Dr Moeti is a public health veteran, with more than 35 years of national and international experience.

She joined WHO’s Africa Regional Office in 1999 and has served as Deputy Regional Director, Assistant Regional Director, Director of Noncommunicable Diseases, WHO Representative for Malawi, Coordinator of the Inter-Country Support Team for the South and East African countries and Regional Advisor for HIV/AIDS.

She is renowned for having led WHO’s “3 by 5” initiative in the African Region at the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic, resulting in a significant increase in access to antiretroviral drugs by HIV-infected persons.

Prior to joining WHO, she worked with UNAIDS as a Team Leader of the Africa and Middle East Desk in Geneva (1997-1999); with UNICEF as a Regional Health Advisor for East and Southern Africa; and with Botswana’s Ministry of Health as a Clinician and Public Health Specialist.


Dr Katey Owen

Dr Katey Einterz Owen is the Director for Neglected Tropical Diseases at The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. In this capacity, Katey has end-to-end responsibility for the Gates Foundation’s investment portfolio in controlling, eliminating, and eradicating the diseases of the London Declaration that collectively put at risk approximately one billion people in the world. The portfolio funds projects with global private and public partners across the value chain, from research and innovation through on-the-ground delivery of interventions in Africa and Asia.

Disease targets included polio, rotavirus, pneumonia, HIV, malaria, TB, Ebola, HPV, typhoid, ETEC, and shigella. Katey joined BMGF in 2013 from the pharmaceutical industry, after demonstrating success in vaccine development, manufacturing, and commercialisation across a portfolio of vaccines. Her perspectives have also been shaped by her oldest sister, who spent her career as a primary care physician and health-district chief in rural northern Cameroun. Prior to joining the pharmaceutical industry, Katey carried out academic research on influenza at the National Institute for Medical Research in Mill Hill (London). She earned her PhD in molecular virology from Purdue University.

Professor Baron Peter Piot

Professor Piot is the Director of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and a Handa Professor of Global Health.

He was the founding Executive Director of UNAIDS and Under Secretary-General of the United Nations between 1995 and 2008.

A clinician and microbiologist by training, he co-discovered the Ebola virus in what was then known as Zaire in 1976, and subsequently led pioneering research on HIV and AIDS, women’s health and infectious diseases in Africa.

He is past president of the International AIDS Society and of the King Baudouin Foundation. In 1995 he was made a baron by King Albert II of Belgium, and in 2016 was awarded a UK honorary knighthood KCMG.

Professor Piot has received numerous awards for his research and service, including the Sir Patrick Manson Medal from RSTMH (2016), Canada Gairdner Global Health Award (2015), the Robert Koch Gold Medal (2015), the Prince Mahidol Award for Public Health (2014), and the Hideyo Noguchi Africa Prize for Medical Research (2013), the F.Calderone Medal (2003), and was named a 2014 TIME Person of the Year (The Ebola Fighters).

He has published over 580 scientific articles and 16 books, including his memoir, No Time to Lose.



Dr Bhargavi Rao

Dr Bhargavi Rao is a Malaria and Infectious Diseases Specialist for Médecins Sans Frontières (Operational Centre Amsterdam), based in the Manson Unit (MSF London).

Bhargavi joined MSF in 2013 initially as a public health specialist, including working as a medical epidemiologist in emergencies, but then later transitioned to her current role in 2015.

She has worked in several conflict contexts including South Sudan, Democratic Republic of Congo, Central African Republic, Chad, Ethiopia, and Venezuela.

Her main areas of interest are malaria and acute febrile illness, as well as improving outbreak response in emergency settings.

Dr Jutta Reinhard-Rupp 

Dr Reinhard-Rupp leads the Global Health Institute, based in Switzerland, as part of the Corporate Affairs organisation at Merck. She drives the strategy of the institute and sits on the front line in the dialogue with key stakeholders within the Global Health Community. She serves as scientific advisor at various boards, including CouNTDown in the UK and EDCTP, the European & Developing Countries Clinical Trials Partnership, and co-chairs the Merck Bioethics Advisory Panel.

She also acts as a visiting professor and Virtual Global Biomedical Faculty member at the African Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology (AiBST) in Zimbabwe. Since January 2008, Jutta has been working at Merck in Italy and in Switzerland with responsibilities on the implementation of key strategic initiatives in drug discovery and development; she led the internal IMI (Innovative Medicine Initiatives) office and activities (European public-private partnerships) and initiated the global health portfolio at Merck leading to the creation of the Merck Global Health Institute in 2017.

Jutta studied Biology in Mainz and Tübingen and received her PhD at the Max-Planck Institute in Tübingen. After her postdoctoral training, she joined biopharmaceutical industries in various assignments within increasing responsibilities.

The Right Worshipful, The Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Cllr Anna Rothery

The Right Worshipful, The Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Cllr Anna Rothery will welcome our delegates to the Congress at the opening plenary on Monday.




Dr Allan Saul

Dr Saul has been the Institute Director of GSK Vaccines Institute for Global Health – GVGH – since its inception as the Novartis Vaccines Institute for Global Health (NVGH) in 2007. The Institute is co-located in Siena, Italy, with a major research and development centre of GSK Vaccines. GVGH develops effective and affordable vaccines for high-burden neglected diseases of impoverished countries.

At GVGH, Dr Saul oversees development of conjugate typhoid and Paratyphi A vaccines, a subunit vaccine for Group A streptococcus, GMMA vaccines for shigella and invasive nontyphoidal salmonella. The GMMA technology, developed at GVGH, which uses genetic engineering to generate high yields of easily purified bacterial outer membrane blebs, offers particular promise for bacterial diseases of low-income countries.

Prior to this appointment, he lead programmes in the development of vaccines for malaria, in malaria biology, epidemiology and control in laboratory programmes in Australia and the USA and in field programmes in many countries in Asia and Africa, and in particular, in Papua New Guinea, China, The Philippines and Mali.

He had previous appointment as the Co-Branch Chief for the Malaria Vaccine Development Branch, NIAIH, NIH in the USA and a joint appointment as a Unit Head at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research and Professor at the University of Queensland. Allan Saul was trained in Biochemistry and Organic Chemistry at the University of Queensland, Australia. In addition to his direct role in vaccine development he has broad interests in pathogen biology, biochemistry, immunology and computer modelling of disease transmission.

Dr Soumya Swaminathan

Dr Swaminathan was most recently WHO's Deputy Director-General for Programmes. A paediatrician from India and a globally recognised researcher on tuberculosis and HIV, she brings with her 30 years of experience in clinical care and research and has worked throughout her career to translate research into impactful programmes.

Dr Swaminathan was Secretary to the Government of India for Health Research and Director General of the Indian Council of Medical Research from 2015 to 2017. In that position, she focused on bringing science and evidence into health policy making, building research capacity in Indian medical schools and forging south-south partnerships in health sciences.

From 2009 to 2011, she also served as Coordinator of the UNICEF/UNDP/World Bank/WHO Special Programme for Research and Training in Tropical Diseases in Geneva. She received her academic training in India, the UK and the USA, and has published more than 350 peer-reviewed publications and book chapters.

She is an elected Foreign Fellow of the US National Academy of Medicine and a Fellow of all three science academies in India. She has previously been on several WHO and global advisory bodies and committees, including the WHO Expert Panel to Review Global Strategy and Plan of Action on Public Health, Innovation and Intellectual Property, the Strategic and Technical Advisory Group of the Global TB Department at WHO, and most recently was Co-Chair of the Lancet Commission on TB.

Professor Chris Whitty

We are delighted to announce Chris Whitty as a keynote speaker. Professor Whitty is a physician and epidemiologist who works in public health, science policy and clinical medicine, is Professor of Public and International Health at London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and is a member of the RSTMH education and training committee.

Currently seconded as Chief Scientific Adviser, Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) alongside LSHTM and NHS roles; this includes leading the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR), being first deputy Chief Medical Officer, and is responsible for supporting evidence-based health policy for the UK life sciences industry. 

It is with great pleasure that we welcome Professor Whitty to our panel of keynote speakers.