Global Child Health Poster Competition

In April 2022 Green Templeton hosted an event on Serving the children of the world: examining the current research needs in Paediatrics. Around 100 participants engaged in a debate on the importance of global child health and attendees were also invited to take part in a poster competition around the topic.

We contacted the winners: Girdlers’ New Zealand Health Research Council Fellow Dr Cervantée Wild and Lisha Jeena (DPhil Clinical Medicine, 2020) to talk about their experience of the mini-symposium and their contribution to the competition. Cervantée and Lisha won the expert panel and event attendee votes respectively.

What was your experience in taking part in the Mini-Symposium on Global Child Health and what was the added value of participating in this initiative?

Dr Cervantée Wild portrait in white top with glass and lamps behind

Cervantée Wild

‘The Mini-Symposium fostered shared connections with a real focus on serving the needs of children in Low- and Middle-Income Countries. It was heartening to see such a wide range of attendees including students and fellows from the GTC community’, Cervantée replied.

‘Critical to its success as a high-powered day of discussion and debate was the partnership with European Society for Paediatric Research (ESPR), The Oxford Global Health and Care Systems Society (OGHCS), The Global Health Network (TGHN) and the Academic Paediatric Association (APA)’, she concluded.

‘It was enriching to learn from experts in the field and to share my own experiences from working as a medical doctor’, Lisha explained. ‘A key overall message was the importance of a holistic and context-specific approach in tackling complex child health challenges. I enjoyed the panel discussion on how high-income countries and private organisations that fund healthcare initiatives in low-and middle-income countries should prioritise their budget and define their expectations’.

What was the focus of your contribution to the poster competition and why do you think it was considered a relevant contribution to the debate of the event?

Lisha Jeena Speaking At Green Templeton Branded Lectern

Lisha Jeena

‘My research explores the effect of HIV-induced inflammation on bone and muscle growth in peri-pubertal children and adolescents’, said Lisha. ‘This research crosses three fields: immunology, musculoskeletal health and infectious disease in a vulnerable population. Although my research project is still in its early stages, it was encouraging to have the topic acknowledged by my peers’.

‘My poster’, explained Cervantée, ‘focused on the long-term outcomes of a family-focused, multidisciplinary intervention addressing childhood obesity (Whānau Pakari). Much of child global health (rightly) centres around childhood infectious diseases. However, given that 90% of those identified as experiencing obesity at 3 years of age will continue along this trajectory into adolescence, it is critical that the global child health conversation does not neglect the enormous impact of non-communicable diseases, such as obesity, on child health’.

Both winners strongly support continued dialogue on issues relating to global child health at Green Templeton in the future.

Anyone with questions, comments or suggestions should get in touch with Davide Bilardi (DPhil Clinical Medicine, 2018).

Created: 14 July 2022