International conference in London aims to improve global health

Whether it’s contamination leading to chronic disease on Walpole Island near Sarnia, or the detrimental health effects of cotton farming half-way around the world in India, the environment has a direct link to health.  Ecohealth is just one of the themes being tackled in a conference being held by Western University’s Office of Global Health at the Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry.  “Transcending Borders: Towards Global Health,” runs Friday, April 27 to Sunday, April 29 at the London Convention Centre.

Ecohealth will be discussed by an international panel, moderated by Dr. John Howard of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment, on Friday from 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. in the convention centre’s theatre.

“This conference will change the way we think of global health.  We want to create a vibrant forum that encourages the exchange of knowledge, and networking, to foster change in matters related to international health care, marginalized communities, education, ecohealth, and advocacy and policy.” says Dr. Neil Arya, Director of the Office for Global Health.

The conference brings together academics, activists, researchers and educations to try to find solutions to global health problems.  Some of the notable speakers include:
• Izzeldin Abuelaish –Nobel Peace Prize nominee, author of “I Shall Not Hate,” and founder of Daughters for Life
• Pakisa Tshimika –Public health specialist from Congo who lost several family members to HIV/AIDS, and suffered his own debilitating spine injury
• Maimuna Kanyamala -2011 Tanzanian Woman of Courage and woman’s rights activist
• Danielle Martin –Canadian Doctors for Medicare
• Jeff Turnbull –Past-President, Canadian Medical Association
• Marilyn McHarg –Medecins sans Frontieres Canada

For a full lineup of the speakers and agenda, please go to

Media contact:  Kathy Wallis, Media Relations Officer, Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, Western University, 519-5661-2111 ext. 81136 or cell: 519-777-1573,  or Ellena Andoniou, Conference Coordinator, cell: 226-688-4262