Burnet celebrates International Women's Day

Burnet Institute

05 March, 2015

Patron of Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies program, Dame Carol Kidu DBE delivering the keynote address at the IWD lunch 2015.

Burnet would like to thank the women who joined us at our special International Womens' Day luncheon to support our vision of creating a healthier future for mothers and babies in Papua New Guinea.

Our Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies (HMHB) five-year research program in PNG took centre stage at a special IWD lunch for many of our supporters.

Keynote speaker, Dame Carol Kidu DBE, who was announced as the Patron of HMHB, spoke passionately about the various health and social challenges facing women in PNG today.

Dame Carol is a former parliamentarian in her adopted homeland of PNG, and is a tireless campaigner for women’s and children’s rights. She has experienced in her own family infant mortality and was impressed by Burnet’s research and widely consultative approach to maternal and child health issues in PNG.

“The issue of maternal mortality, maternal health and child health is not a health issue, it’s a social issue and a development issue,” Dame Carol said.

“I’ve been a strong advocate on maternal mortality, not just in PNG but regionally, and I recognise that we are nowhere near reaching any of the targets that we are supposed to meet.

“The need for evidence-based approaches is critical, and I’m confident that Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies will inspire and assist enormously. But we need to remember that Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies is only the beginning of a long road. Communities need to take responsibility for the safety of mothers, and that includes men.”

Dr Michelle Hendel, who is the Program Manager in PNG for Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies, travelled from the research site in Kokopo, East New Britain to share the latest news from the field.

Dr Hendel said the program was about to start its first study, an observational cohort study of 700 mothers and their babies, stretching from their first visit at an antenatal clinic to their babies first birthday.

This is our fabulous team heading up the Healthy Mothers, Healthy Babies program, along with our Kokopo-based staff too.

(L-R Dr Megan Lim, Dr Elissa Kennedy, Dr Freya Fowkes, Ms Lisa Davidson, Dr Michelle Hendel, Ms Janet Gare, Ms Kellie Woiwod, HMHB Patron Dame Carol Kidu DBE, Ms Jen Clark, Professor Margaret Hellard, Ms Eliette Dupre-Husser)

Find out more about the HMHB program.

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