In Tuesday June 19, I spoke in the Manitoba Legislature on the recent conference held in Winnipeg on Global Public Health and on the extraordinary contributions by Manitobans to address the global HIV-AIDS epidemic and to address outbreaks of Ebola.
Hon. Jon Gerrard (River Heights): On June 12th and 13th a conference was held in Winnipeg on Canada and Global Public Health: Moving from Strategy to Action.
Achievements by Manitobans were highlighted. In 1980, Dr. Allan Ronald began the University of Manitoba/University of Nairobi World Health Organization Research and Training Program in Sexually Transmitted Diseases.
Dr. Frank Plummer and others worked closely with Dr. Ronald in this work in Kenya and this effort contributed significantly to understanding the nature of the HIV/AIDS epidemic and has led to approaches to address and reduce it.
Dr. James Blanchard and Dr. Stephen Moses have worked extensively in Karnataka and Rajasthan, India and other parts of south Asia on HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention with major funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
With regard to Ebola, extraordinary work has been done at the public health agency of Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory in Winnipeg to produce an effective vaccine to prevent Ebola and effective therapy for Ebola using a combination of monoclonal antibodies developed by Dr. Gary Kobinger and his team. These efforts have been supported during outbreaks by a very effective mobile laboratory established by Dr. Neil Simonsen and others.
At the gala dinner, Mr. Ashok Alexander, with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, was emphatic in praising these major contributions.
Congratulations to all who've contributed to the efforts by Manitobans to address public health issues on our planet.