Curtin public health expert to deliver public lecture on ‘COVID-19 – Vulnerability, Variants and Vaccines’

Miri – 14 August 2021 – Highly relevant to the current situation with COVID-19 and aimed at giving the public a better understanding of the pandemic’s health and social impacts, the Faculty of Humanities and Health Sciences at Curtin University Malaysia (Curtin Malaysia) is hosting a free public lecture titled ‘COVID-19 – Vulnerability, Variants and Vaccines’ on 20 August 2021.

It will be delivered by Professor Jaya Dantas, Dean International in the Faculty of Health Sciences and Professor in the Curtin School of Population Health at Curtin University in Perth.

Professor Dantas has had extensive experience over 30 years in the field of public health in India, Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Timor Leste and Australia. At Curtin University, she leads the Faculty of Health Sciences’ global positioning portfolio in expanding the One Curtin strategy, global demand for health courses, and growing international collaborations.

As a teaching and research academic, Professor Dantas is chief investigator on research projects in refugee and migrant health with a focus on global public health, social determinants, mental health and health equity.

She is a Fellow of the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) and President of Australian Graduate Women, and has been a delegate to the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) at the United Nations.

In her lecture, Professor Dantas will provide a global perspective of the COVID-19 pandemic, 21 months after the outbreak of the new virus was detected. She will share examples of global public health responses, and the impacts of COVID-19 on vulnerable populations in both developed and developing countries.

As health authorities around the world adjust their COVID-19 responses to the more transmissible Delta variant, Professor Dantas will also discuss the latest developments and the impact of vaccines, including their development, safety, efficacy and hesitancy of intake.

The lecture will be streamed live on Curtin Malaysia’s Facebook page from 3 pm onwards on 20 August. Those interested to attend or follow the lecture are encouraged to pre-register at www.curtin.edu.my/guest-lecture before 18 August 2021. Those who register will be sent a reminder by email with a link to the live stream.

Moderating the lecture will be Senior Lecturer & Fieldwork Coordinator and Health Promotion Researcher Dr. Linda Portsmouth, also of Curtin University’s Faculty of Health Sciences.

Interim Dean of Curtin Malaysia’s Faculty of Humanities and Health Sciences, Dr. Anita Jimmie, said the topic of the lecture is very relevant in the current COVID-19 environment in Malaysia and globally, and those who wish to have a better understanding of the impacts of the coronavirus will find the lecture very insightful.

She said students, staff and alumni of Curtin Malaysia and other Curtin campuses, as well as members of the public, especially those involved in the public health sector, are encouraged to attend the lecture. Those who wish to advance their careers in public health with Curtin’s Master of Public Health coursework degree will also get to find out more about the course now being offered at Curtin Malaysia.

Professor Dantas was also a speaker alongside her colleague, Associate Professor Nick Golding, at a webinar on COVID-19 jointly hosted by Curtin Malaysia and the Miri Division Disaster Management Committee (MDDMC) in April this year.

The webinar was attended by over 100, including Local Government and Housing Minister and minister overseeing public health matters in Sarawak, Professor Dato Sri Dr. Sim Kui Hian, and Deputy State Secretary Datuk Ik Pahon Joyik, as well as Transport Minister and minister in charge of the MDDMC, Datuk Lee Kim Shin, Miri Resident and MDDMC chairman Abdul Aziz Bin Mohd. Yusuf, Residents of other divisions, hospital directors, doctors and public health officials.

Professor Jaya Dantas, speaker for upcoming ‘COVID-19 – Vulnerability, Variants and Vaccines’ guest lecture.

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