The 3rd International Conference on Public Health in Africa (CPHIA 2023) – an annual scientific conference of the African Union, organized by, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (Africa CDC) was held in Lusaka, Zambia, from 27 -30th November 2023, under the theme “Breaking Barriers: Repositioning Africa in the global health architecture.
The four-day gathering presented an exceptional opportunity for African scientists, researchers, policymakers, and advocates to exchange valuable perspectives and unveil significant research findings in the realm of public health, which are pertinent to improving global health security. It featured global leaders and high-level speakers, including H.E. Hakainde Hichilema, President of Zambia, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO), among other policy experts, and emerging researchers from around the world.
Key discussions across multiple sessions during the conference highlighted the complexities and challenges that Africa faces in its health security, as many speakers echoed the call for the continent to change the narrative of global health decision making and use the opportunity at hand – to chart a new course, create health systems capable of withstanding the inevitable shocks. They also emphasized the need to reposition the continent to a place befitting of its status in the global health architecture.
Convened by the Africa CDC and hosted by the government of Zambia CPHIA 2023 featured 9 plenary and 18 parallel sessions, several high-level special sessions, 18 abstract driven sessions, and over 100 side events. The in-person conference commenced following a 3-day virtual programming, which included 18 virtual abstract sessions and more than 30 virtual side events.
See key highlights below:
|Countries represented globally 52% Males 48%) Females
|Sessions across the conference tracks 3-special sessions 9-scientific plenaries 18-Abstract sessions 18-Parallel sessions
|Speakers and Moderators
|Oral abstract presentations
|Virtual abstract presentations
|In-person side events
|Virtual side events
|Accredited media onsite
|Media fellows supported through scholarship
|Onsite interviews conducted
|Media output produced during conference week
Cross-section of delegates at CPHIA closing ceremony
The conference concluded with a rallying call for participants to ensure discussions at CPHIA 2023 translates into actions that would strengthen health systems across the continent. Three annual awards were announced during the opening and closing ceremonies at CPHIA 2023:
Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General of WHO, received the Lifetime Achievement in Public Health Award. This award is given to individuals who have made extraordinary contributions to public health and health research on the African continent. Dr. Tedros was recognized for his commitment to ensuring access to healthcare, promoting equity, and tackling emerging health threats, including his leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dr. Namubiru Saudah Kizito of Uganda received the award for this year’s Best Oral Abstract Presentation. Dr. Saudah, an Advanced Field Epidemiology Fellow at the Uganda National Institute of Public Health (UNIPH), delivered a presentation titled “Increasing trends of antibiotic resistance in Uganda, 2018–2021.”Dr. Joseph Fokam of Cameroon received the award for this year’s Best Abstract Poster Presentation. Dr Fokam is a Virologist at Chantal BIYA International Reference Centre for Research on HIV/AIDS Prevention and Management (CIRCB/FHS-UB). His abstract is titled “Emerging integrase resistance in dolutegravir-treated individuals calls for more cautious use of dolutegravir-containing regimens in resource limited settings.”
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