The role of the Fiji National University’s (FNU) College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences (CMNHS) in facilitating research and discussions has been commended by the Minister for Health and Medical Services Dr Ifereimi Waqainabete

Speaking at the Pacific Health Governance Research Network (PHGRN) Workshop II currently underway in Nadi, the honourable Dr Waqainabete said the College has made immense contribution to the medical sector in Fiji and the region.

“The role that the College (CMNHS) is playing is very positive. One of the important roles of the University is to participate in research and College is doing that brilliantly,” Dr Waqainabete said.

The Minister said through its various programmes, CMNHS was providing key tools to post graduate students to master a particular research area.

About 12 staff from CMNHS are part of the PHGRN Workshop II.

Dr Waqainabete also said he was pleased to note that the theme of the workshop focused on research in Pacific health security, biosecurity and human security, incorporating the management of disasters and infectious disease epidemics, the interactions between climate change and health, as well as water, food and psychological securities, including the impacts on sexual reproductive health, an important dimension of the health security.

“I trust that your discussions will focus on improving communication and feedback between policy-makers and communities, in order to translate global, regional and national policies into workable strategies that encourage climate change adaptation programs in local communities,” said the Minister.

“Research needs to create clear linkages between climate change and health in the Pacific in order to mobilise local action and garner support from the international community.”

The workshop also heard the significant contributions made by the Pacific Community as the region’s leading scientific and development organisation working in over 26 different sectors with 22 countries.

The Deputy Director-General of Pacific Community, Dr Audrey Aumua said the workshop provided researchers an opportunity to drive a research agenda from within the Pacific.

“This requires efforts by all of us and our partners to assist us and to accompany us to build capacity and to collaborate,” Dr Auma said.

“By the end of this event, we hope to formulate a set of concepts and draft ideas for proposal development. These will be crafted based on discussions that will form the basis of agreed joint plans.”

“I hope that this two-day conference—a platform for thought and research leaders, academics and students to share their ideas, will challenge and invigorate all delegates and in turn inspire new and practical research initiatives in the region,” highlight Dr Aumua.

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