The COMMVAC project is made up of current and previous COMMVAC members as well as an advisory group
Simon Lewin is a senior researcher at the Norwegian Knowledge Centre for the Health Services and the Medical Research Council of South Africa. His current work is largely within the field of implementation research, including systematic reviews of complex health interventions; the development and evaluation of strategies for changing professional and consumer behaviours and the organization of care; and methods for synthesizing the findings of qualitative studies. He is currently working on evidence-based strategies for improving communication about childhood vaccinations with parents and communities; evaluations of interventions to improve adherence to TB treatment and HAART in South Africa; and on a large EU-funded project focused on supporting the conduct and uptake of systematic reviews and randomized trials in low- and middle-income countries. He is an editor for the Cochrane Consumers and Communication Review Group and the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care Review Group.
Claire Glenton Glenton is a senior researcher at the Global Health Unit, Norwegian Knowledge Centre for the Health Services. Her research interests are largely within the field of implementation research, including systematic reviews of complex health interventions, systematic reviews of qualitative and quantitative research; and methods for disseminating systematic review evidence to a variety of decision makers. She is an editor for the Cochrane Consumers and Communication Review Group.
Sophie Hill is the Head of the Centre for Health Communication and Participation at La Trobe University, Australia. As Coordinating Editor for the Cochrane Consumers and Communication Review Group, she works with the Group and with the international community of researchers to build evidence in systematic reviews of interventions to communicate with and involve people in their health. Associated with producing systematic reviews are projects such as 'Communicate to Vaccinate', which is contributing the building blocks to the accumulation of knowledge, through developing a shared language to describe and understand interventions in practice. Sophie is leading the evidence mapping and taxonomy stages of the 'Communicate to Vaccinate' project. Sophie is the editor of 'The Knowledgeable Patient: Communication and Participation in Health,' published by Wiley Blackwell.
Angela Oyo-Ita is a Community Physician and a Professor in the College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar. She lectures on epidemiology in the College. She is involved in providing preventive and curative health care services in urban and rural communities. Her research focus is mainly on maternal and child health. She has synthesized data on interventions for improving immunization coverage in low and middle income countries. She is a part of the Demographic Surveillance Survey team in one of the rural settings in Nigeria. She also works as the Deputy Director of the Nigerian Branch of South African Cochrane Centre. She is involved in creating awareness on evidence-based health care and mentoring on development of Cochrane systematic reviews. Currently she is involved in directing immunization exercise as the Commissioner for Health in Cross River State in Southern Nigeria.
Heather Ames is a PhD researcher at the Norwegian Knowledge Centre for the Health Services. She is interested in ethnographic research as well as communication in health care settings. Her masters explored communication in vaccination in Bangladesh focusing on information exchange in the vaccination room. As part of her PhD work for the COMMVAC project Heather will be undertaking field work in Cameroon exploring communication interventions in childhood vaccination as well as conducting a qualitative systematic review about perceptions of vaccination information.
Jessica Kaufman is a Research Officer in the Centre for Health Communication and Participation in the Australian Institute for Primary Care & Ageing at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. She is also a PhD candidate in the School of Public Health. Jessica’s work on the first ‘Communicate to Vaccinate’ project focused on the evidence mapping and taxonomy development stages. She was also the lead author on a COMMVAC-related Cochrane systematic review: “Face to face interventions for informing or educating parents about early childhood vaccination” (http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD010038.pub2/abstract). In the COMMVAC 2 project, Jessica is primarily responsible for the development of a taxonomy of communication interventions used in mass vaccination campaigns and the creation of an outcomes framework.
Dr Afiong Oku is a recently qualified public health Physician of the West African College of Physicians. She currently works as a consultant in the Department of Community Medicine at University of Calabar Teaching Hospital in Calabar, Nigeria. She is also a PHD student on the COMMVAC 2 project. Her areas of research interest are epidemiology and disease control, health policy and management, reproductive and family health and research involving vulnerable groups such as women, children and people living with HIV/AIDS. Afiong has participated in many projects involving immunization services/programmes in both urban and rural settings in Nigeria. Some of her research projects include; Adherence patterns amongst People living with HIV/AIDS on HAART in urban and rural settings in Nigeria and Assessment of stressors and Psychological morbidity amongst undergraduate medical trainees in Nigeria.
Artur Manuel Muloliwa is graduate in medicine and Doctor in Public Health. He is now a member of the technical staff in the Health Department and supports the immunization programme in Nampula, Mozambique. He is a member of the operational research team in the province and his interests are qualitative and quantitative research methodologies. He is currently is exploring causes of vaccination dropout.
Julie Cliff is a physician and epidemiologist who is currently Professor Auxiliar in the Community Health Department, Faculty of Medicine, Eduardo Mondlane University, Maputo, Mozambique. She is an Affiliate Professor at the University of Washington, Seattle, and an Associate of Health Alliance International (HAI), Seattle, and the Burnet Institute, Melbourne. In Mozambique, she is a member of the Mozambican National Polio Expert Committee. Her main body of research is on diseases related to the consumption of cassava. Other research interests include vaccination and vaccine-preventable diseases, health policy, currently regarding integrated community case management, and the use of evidence in policy.
Xavier Bosch-Capblanch is a Medical Doctor, with an official speciality degree in Public Health, MSc in Tropical Medicine and Hygiene (Spain) and a PhD on vaccination evidence and policy. He is currently Group Leader at the Systems Support Unit, at the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute (Basel). He is also Honorary Lecturer at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine. Bosch-Capblanch started his career working as a clinician in Spain and he has been living and working in rural settings of Sub-Saharan Africa for 10 years. Over the years, he progressively moved from clinical work to health care management, public health and project management. His areas of expertise include health information and evidence around health systems interventions. In the former, he has been involved in numerous initiatives to assess the quality of routine administrative and surveys data on vaccination, has led several surveys in different countries and has lectured on data and information for decision making. A significant part of this work is directly related to vaccination coverage data. He has been involved in several Cochrane systematic reviews and has led initiatives to bridge the gap between research evidence and management and policy making, also in the area of immunisation.
Gabriel Rada is an Associate Professor of the Faculty of Medicine and Head of the Evidence-Based Healthcare Program at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. He leads projects in the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) in Evidence-Based Health care and is the co-founder and executive director of Epistemonikos, a non-for-profit organization created for promoting the use of the best available research evidence in health decision-making. He is currently working in technologies that combine machine and human collaborative efforts to generate knowledge, multilingual platforms for decision-makers, and automation of systematic reviews. He is co-director of the Southern American Branch of the Iberoamerican Cochrane Centre, conducts systematic reviews in different topics and provides methodological support to other reviewers in the region. He is also editor for the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care Review Group.
Yuri Cartier is the Scientific Projects and Publications Coordinator at the International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE), where she is responsible for coordinating and supporting the execution of various scientific collaborations, projects and initiatives as well as serving as the managing editor for Global Health Promotion, the IUHPE’s academic journal. Yuri has a Master of Public Health from the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Santé Publique (EHESP) and a B.A. in Women’s and Gender Studies from Wellesley College.
Vivian Lin is the Chair of Public Health (and was Head of the School of Public Health from 2000-2005) at La Trobe University in Melbourne and Director, Health Sector Development, World Health Organization (Western Pacific Regional Office). She was previously the Executive Officer for the Australian National Public Health Partnership. She has held senior positions within the NSW Health Dept, the National Occupational Health and Safety Commission, and the Victorian Health Dept (and its successors), where she has had responsibility for policy, planning, and program development across a wide range of health issues. Vivian is currently the Vice President for Scientific Affairs for the International Union of Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE). She has been a member of the boards of the Cooperative Research Centre for Aboriginal Health, the inaugural President of the Chinese Medicine Registration Board of Victoria (2000-2009), convenor of the Australian Network of Academic Public Health Institutions (ANAPHI), policy convenor for the Public Health Association of Australia, and a member of the Australia-China Council. Vivian consults for the World Bank, World Health Organization, and the UK Dept for International Development, particular in China and the Asia-Pacific Region, on health systems and health promotion. She is an advisory editor for health policy for Social Science and Medicine and serves on the editorial boards of Australian Health Review, Australian Journal of Primary Health, and Health Education Research. Vivian received her educational qualifications at Yale (BA) and UC Berkeley (MPH and DrPH). She has authored a number of key texts used in Australia, including health planning, public health practice, and evidence-based health policy.
Charles Shey Wiysonge is a Senior Research Officer and Vaccinology Programme Manager at the Institute of Infectious Disease and Molecular Medicine, University of Cape Town, South Africa. Charles is currently working on synthesis of research evidence on health system interventions for improving childhood immunisation; evidence-based strategies for improving communication about childhood immunisation with parents and communities; and systematic reviews of interventions for prevention of HIV infection. He is also the manager of the Vaccines for Africa Initiative (VACFA) and author with several Cochrane Review Groups. He previously worked for the Expanded Programme on Immunisation in Cameroon and has been a consultant on vaccines and immunisation for WHO and the GAVI Alliance.
Sara Bensaude De Castro Freire is the coordinator of scientific projects and publications at the International Union for Health Promotion and Education (IUHPE) where she is responsible for coordinating and ensuring the appropriate linkages of various scientific collaborations, projects and initiatives with a focus on the social determinants of health, health promotion in sustainable development, health promotion systems and Non Communicable Diseases prevention and control.
Before joining the IUHPE in 2008, her work focused on the reduction of social health inequalities both at the French and European level. Sara has also worked with various organizations and in different settings, as an anthropologist, where her work mainly related to community based approaches and responses to HIV/AIDS and sexual violence.
Sara holds a Masters in Anthropology from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, and a Masters in Public Health and Development from the University Libre de Bruxelles in Belgium.
Gregory Hussey is the Director of the Vaccines for Africa Initiative (VACFA) and Deputy Dean responsible for research in the Faculty of Health Sciences at the University of Cape Town (UCT). Greg is also a Professor in the UCT School of Child and Adolescent Health, and a former Director of the UCT Institute of Infectious Diseases and Molecular Medicine as well as the South African Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative. He has been a part-time World Health Organization (WHO) consultant for the past 15 years in the following sections: Expanded Program on Immunization, Division of Child Health and Development, and Vaccine Research and Development. He currently serves on a number of international committees including the WHO Tuberculosis Vaccine International Advisory Group and the WHO Global Advisory Committee on Vaccine Safety. He served on the 2010 Conference Coordinating Committee for the Second Global Forum on TB Vaccines; was the chair for the basic science track for the SA 2010 TB conference and was operations research track co-chair for the 2009 International AIDS Society Conference. He has also served on a number of International Data Safety Monitoring Committees for new paediatric vaccines. In addition, Greg is a member of a number of important national scientific advisory committees in South Africa; including the National Advisory Group on Immunisation (which he chairs), the National Health Research Committee, and the Board of National Health Laboratory Services..
Dr Hassan Mahomed (MBChB, MMed (Public Health)) is currently the co-director of the South African TB Vaccine Initiative (SATVI) at the University of Cape Town (UCT). He is responsible for TB vaccine field site activities. He has been at SATVI for seven years. Previously he spent 5 years with the City of Cape Town Municipality as an Epidemiologist. He qualified as a doctor through UCT in 1985 and became a public health specialist in 1996 also through UCT.
Leyla Hussein Abdullah is is a "Master of Public Health" student at the University of Cape Town and works as a research officer with the South African Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative (SATVI) at the University of Cape Town. She is currently working on evidence-based strategies for improving communication about childhood vaccinations with parents and communities; and also a systematic review on "Public stewardship of private for-profit health care in low- and middle-income countries" with the Cochrane Effective Practice and Organisation of Care Group.
Linda Anderson is completing her 'Master of Public Health' at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. She is particularly interested in communications within the health sector, and increasingly in the use of the Arts in public health promotion, and community resilience. Current research projects include: Communicate to Vaccinate; and a local project exploring adult service gaps and their impact on chronically ill adolescents and young adults transitioning from paediatric services to adult ones in Melbourne.
Natalie Willis is a Research Officer in the Centre for Health Communication and Participation in the Australian Institute for Primary Care & Ageing at La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. She is currently working on the 'Communicate to Vaccinate' project and is responsible with Jessica Kaufman for the evidence mapping and taxonomy development stages. She is undertaking a Master of Public Health at La Trobe University and has an interest in the reproductive health knowledge of couples seeking infertility treatment.
Priscilla Robinson is an epidemiologist and Senior Lecturer at La Trobe University. She is the programme co-ordinator for several post graduate degrees in the School of Public Health. Her research interests include the control of communicable diseases, risk communication, and the use of the Arts in public health promotion. Some of her current projects include the evaluation of an Aboriginal Health Promotion Service in Western Australia, the effects of climate change on tourism along the Murray River in northern Victoria, and communicable diseases in China. She is also an Editor of the Australian and New Zealand Journal of Public Health.