The 2012 Health Sciences Research Day and Postgraduate Expo takes place on Wednesday, 19 September 2012, under the theme: Excellence. Relevance. Determination. Transforming Life through Research Excellence.
This biennial event exposes the staff and postgraduate students to leading research work taking place in the Faculty of Health Sciences. It is a showcase for relevant and exciting research discoveries in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Wits. It strengthens links, collaborations and co-ordination of research efforts among research entities and individuals working in the field of health sciences and related disciplines.
For 2012, presentations – both oral and posters – have been invited in five thematic tracks: infectious diseases; diseases of lifestyle; education, policy and systems; molecular and comparative biosciences; and clinical sciences and therapeutics for health. The themes were created to give an opportunity for all research – whether basic or clinical – to be showcased.
“The visibility of the Faculty’s research has grown significantly in the last decade or so, and the breadths of the activities that have been performed are covered by the themes to envelope the whole breadth of research ongoing within the Faculty. The themes define the Faculty’s activities,” says Dr Bavesh Kana, HSRD Committee Chair and former HSRD winner.
The prizes are worth the effort for entrants: R20 000 is awarded for the best overall oral presentations and R10 000 for the best poster presentations. The best student oral presentation receives R5 000 and the best poster presentation collects R2 500 for each thematic track.
“By awarding big prizes, we hope to encourage participation of the best of the Faculty’s research, to make it incredibly competitive and to have huge prestige associated with it. The history speaks accordingly – previous winners have had their studies published in high-impact journals and have been invited to present their work at international conferences. The value of the prizes raises the bar of the event and Research Day could be seen as a good indicator of what’s to come in terms of imminent research breakthroughs,” says Kana.
Prof. Beverley Kramer, Assistant Dean for Research and Postgraduate Support in the Faculty of Health Sciences, says she is excited to see young researchers excel during the 2012 HSRD.
“We need to see that our emerging researchers are well-trained and that they stay at Wits in the long term,” says Kramer.
The following roundtable discussions also take place during HSRD, hosted by the HSRD Organising Committee, addressing South Africa’s many unique health challenges, which currently threaten to undermine its overall economic, social and technological advancement – Tuberculosis (TB) and AIDS.
A world without AIDS?
Discussion leader: Lynn Morris: National Institute for Communicable Diseases of the NHLS/Wits
Penelope Moore – NICD of the NHLS/Wits on research towards a cure
Francois Venter – WRHI on prep and prevention
Alex Welte – South African Centre for Epidemiological Modelling and Analysis, University of Stellenbosch on theoretical perspectives on elimination of infection and epidemics
Venue: Hospital Auditorium, Wits Medical School
Time: 14:40 to 15:30pm
Discussion leader: Gavin Churchyard – Aurum Institute
Bavesh Kana – DST/NRF Centre of Excellence for Biomedical TB Research on why it is so hard to kill the tubercle bacillus
Kerrigan McCarthy – Aurum Institute on what it will take to control TB in SA: a modelling perspective
Neil Martinson – Perinatal HIV Research Unit on what it will take to control TB in SA: the role of TB case finding
Venue: Marie Curie Lecture Theatre, Wits Medical School
Time: 14:40 to 15:30pm
Colliding Epidemics – Africa in Transition
Discussion leader: Michèle Ramsay – Sydney Brenner Institute for Molecular Bioscience & NHLS
Brandon Wainwright – Queensland Institute for Molecular Bioscience, Australia on ‘Essentially the beginning – an understanding of molecular and cellular processes’
Stephen Tollman – MRC/Wits Rural Public Health and Health Transitions Research Unit (Agincourt) on ‘Sizing the collision – a population perspective on burden and risk’
Alisha Wade – Wits School of Public Health on clinical management for chronic care – what does it take?
Venue: Neurosciences Auditorium, Charlotte Maxeke Hospital
Time: 14:40 to 15:30pm
For more information and programme details on the 2012 Health Sciences Research Day and Postgraduate Expo, click here.
For media enquiries, contact Vivienne.Rowland@wits.ac.za or (011) 717 1017.