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Pacific Health Research Training Course

25 November 2003

Pacific Health Research Training Course

Representatives from nine Pacific Island nations will gather to discuss Pacific health research priorities in Auckland today.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Health Research Council of New Zealand (HRC) are joining forces in a training course to promote guidelines for health researchers working in the Pacific.

The Pacific Health Research Training Course aims to build health research capability and capacity in the Pacific region.

HRC chief executive Bruce Scoggins says the HRC alliance with the WHO is extremely significant for health research in the Pacific.

“Opportunities exist for developed countries like New Zealand to assist those countries trying to build their capability to conduct quality health research,” says Dr Scoggins.

“Bringing together participants from ten nations to discuss Pacific health research methods is also an important step in fostering future research collaborations in the Pacific.”

Leading New Zealand health researchers will discuss research approaches applicable to various issues.

Diabetes, meningitis and health and nutrition promotion are central topics of the course, as well as drug and alcohol and mental health research.
Cutting-edge Pacific health research projects will be provided as case study examples.

The course will cover ethical guidelines for Pacific health research and the development of Pacific health research methodologies, models and research approaches.

Karlo Mila, HRC Manager Pacific health research, says the course will focus on Pacific health research priorities where strengths have been developed in New Zealand.

“New Zealand researchers have made significant progress towards treatment and prevention of health problems such as diabetes and other Non-Communicable diseases,” says Ms Mila.

The course runs for eight days from Tuesday 25 November to Thursday 4 December.

The HRC’s Pacific Health Research Fono will be held on Friday 5 December, featuring speakers from Samoa, Niue, Fiji, Tonga and the Cook Islands.

A ‘Great Debate’ is scheduled for Friday afternoon, discussing whether ‘By Pacific for Pacific’ is the answer to improving health outcomes for Pacific peoples.

The course is being held at the Sheraton Auckland.

- ends -

WHO Pacific Health Research Training Course
The Health Research Council will administer a Pacific “Health Research Training Course” on behalf of the World Health Organisation

General Details

- Commencement: Tuesday 25 November to Thursday 4 December. The Pacific Health Research Fono will be held on Friday 5 December.
- Duration: Nine working days, including the Pacific Health Research Fono.
- Venue: Sheraton Towers, Symonds Street, Auckland.
- Number of participants: There will be 18 participants from nine Pacific Island nations (Cook Islands, Tonga, Fiji, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Tuvalu, American Samoa, Tokelau) and New Zealand.

Course Outline

- The training course will follow a similar format to that described in the “WHO Health Research Methodology: A guide for training in research methods”.
- The course will focus mostly on public health research (e.g. epidemiology, biostatistics, quantitative and qualitative social science, health services and evaluation research) but will involve two field trips, one to a biomedical research laboratory and another to a clinical trial research unit.
- The course will focus on Pacific health research priorities, where Pacific health research strengths have been developed in New Zealand: such as diabetes and other Non Communicable diseases research, drug and alcohol research, mental health research, injury, nutrition and health promotion, health services and determinants of health (social, environmental, socio economic etc) research
- The course will also cover Pacific health research capacity building initiatives, Pacific health research ethical guidelines and considerations and the development of Pacific health research methodologies, models and research approaches.
- The course will consist of lectures presented by leading New Zealand health researchers in various fields of expertise.
- The Annual Pacific Health Research Fono will be held on the last day of the course: December 5 2003.


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