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16 May 2019

Priyanka Pillai awarded Observership by the Australian Government in infectious disease research

Priyanka Pillai, a Health Data Specialist at the Doherty Institute has been awarded an Observership from the Australian Government to get an inside look at how the Government protects the public from the threat of disease.

Ms Pillai works with Australian Partnership for Preparedness Research on Infectious Disease Emergencies (APPRISE) to develop strategies and infrastructure for gathering data during public health emergencies.

The Observership will allow her to attend the 2019 meetings of the Public Health Laboratory Network (PHLN) and gain first-hand knowledge of how research can impact policy around infectious disease management, including preparing for and responding to pandemics.

“The insights into the activities of national level laboratories and genomics, and infectious diseases research will help me to better understand the information needed to provide early warning for detection of new and emerging infectious diseases,” she said.

APPRISE partnered with two Australian Government networks to create the opportunity, in a bid to boost Australia’s workforce around infectious disease research on public health.

Building a workforce with this knowledge is vital to ensuring Australia’s research efforts can be targeted to help minimise the impact of future infectious disease emergencies.

Two more Observerships to the 2019 meetings of the Communicable Diseases Network Australia (CDNA) were awarded to; Dr Jason Kwong, an Infectious Disease Physician at the Centre of Research Excellence in Protecting the Public from Emerging Infectious Diseases (CREID) at Austin Health, and Dr Sacha Stelzer-Braid, a scientist in the Integrated Systems for Epidemic Response (ISER) Centre of Research Excellence.

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