Associate Professor Susana Vaz Nery – Global health research at the Kirby Institute: Neglected tropical diseases

Event date
Tuesday 7th December 2021
Event time
1:00 PM
Event address
Online event



Webinar via Zoom
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Kirby Institute Seminar Series presents

Associate Professor Susana Vaz Nery  

Associate Professor Susana Vaz Nery
Associate Professor, Public Health Interventions Research Program, Kirby Institute

Susana Vaz Nery has a multidisciplinary background, combining degrees and experience in biochemistry, neurosciences, health policy and international development, and field epidemiology in tropical diseases.

Following undergraduate studies in Portugal, Susana undertook her PhD in neuroscience (at NYU Medical Centre, New York).  She began her career on tropical diseases as a malaria molecular parasitologist at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM), with a EMBL fellowship. While based in London, she did malaria research in top African research centres in Kenya, The Gambia and Tanzania.

In 2007, she joined Malaria Consortium in Mozambique, as a monitoring and evaluation specialist, providing technical support to the National Malaria Control Program.

Susana then moved to Angola as the scientific coordinator of a recently created health research centre (CISA Project), where she led a team of approximately 70 scientific and field staff.

In 2012, she re-joined academia and moved to Timor-Leste to work on the control of soil transmitted helminths and other tropical diseases, and to Canberra in 2015, as a senior research fellow at ANU.

Susana joined the Kirby Institute at UNSW in 2018, where she leads the Neglected Tropical Diseases research group, that uses intervention studies to generate evidence that can inform health policy changes for more effective and sustainable disease control strategies.


Optimising strategies for control and elimination of neglected tropical diseases (NTDs)

Neglected tropical diseases (NTDs) cause serious morbidity and disability, affecting 2 billion people in low- and middle-income countries. The main strategy for control of key NTDs is preventive chemotherapy (PC), the regular delivery of drugs to entire communities or specific sub-groups, such as children. PC NTDs of global importance include soil-transmitted helminths (STH), schistosomiasis, scabies, trachoma, lymphatic filariasis and yaws.

The NTD research group is leading large-scale intervention research linked to novel diagnostics, social science, health economics and mathematical modelling aiming to contribute to the control and elimination of PC NTDs in the Asia-Pacific region and Africa. In this seminar, Associate Prof Susana Vaz Nery will present an overview of the research conducted by the NTD research group. Examples include cluster randomised control trials in Vietnam, Solomon Islands and Fiji; and impact assessments of PC programs in Vanuatu, Solomon Islands, Nauru, Timor-Leste and Angola.


Opinions expressed in the Kirby Institute Seminar Series are solely those of the speaker and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of the Kirby Institute or UNSW.