Under the conference theme, ‘Partnering for Impact’, IVCC hosted its first stakeholder conference in three years in its home town of Liverpool on 19th September. Ahead of the full day conference at Liverpool’s Town Hall, 150 guests were invited a very special pre-conference dinner at Liverpool’s iconic Anglican Cathedral where they were able to meet and network over dinner whilst being treated to a stunning performance from mezzo soprano Jennifer Johnston, artist in residence at Liverpool’s philharmonic orchestra.
IVCC was delighted to welcome Dr Ruth Shakespeare, former medical director of the Mulanjee Mission hospital in Malawi, as the keynote speaker. Dr Ruth’s honest and very real testimony to the challenges of dealing with malaria on the ground grabbed everyone’s attention. Dr Ruth spoke passionately how her hospital ward can become overrun with malaria cases if there is no adequate vector control support in the local area, often with more than seventy percent of hospital beds being filled with children suffering from serious cases of malaria. However, Dr Ruth’s message was also one of real hope. Following the introduction of next generation IRS in the area, malaria cases have fallen dramatically. Moreover, Dr Ruth has shown how the mission hospital approach can be a model for how future IRS and other vector control initiatives can be efficiently and effectively rolled out across local community settings. (A full copy of Dr Ruth’s speech can be found here)
IVCC’s programme for the day was filled with a series of panel discussions and presentations from a range of distinguished guests drawn from all corners of the malaria community, including funders, industry, academia and regulators. As well as valuable networking time, attendees were also able to view an extensive scientific poster programme as well as see a demonstration of new ‘smart-lite’ IRS spray technology from Goizper.
A series of inspiring and thought-provoking sessions ensured that key challenges were discussed and debated and and where achievements had been made, they were appropriately recognised. IVCC would like to thank all participants for making our Stakeholder conference a highly engaging and successful event.