Seminar Series

Seminar Series 2019

MERQ runs an annual seminar series on topics relating to medical and health education research as well as providing professional development opportunities.

If you would like to be notified of forthcoming MERQ Seminars, please join our seminar mailing list. For information about the seminar program, please contact us.

Wednesday 20 March

Learning from our success in tobacco & UV to address new challenges in public health

Craig Sinclair – Head, Prevention Division, Cancer Council Victoria

Our understanding of how to reduce cancer risks at the population level is becoming better, particularly as a result of our efforts in tobacco control and skin cancer which has had the benefit of over 30 years of investment by governments and civil society to tackle the issue.

In this seminar, the burden of preventable cancers will be presented, our understanding of what we have learnt from 30 years of population based interventions to tackle tobacco and UV will be discussed and importantly how these learnings can be applied within the context of significant and potentially bigger challenges facing us in relation to obesity, alcohol and screening.

Watch video recording
(Monash authcate required)

Wednesday 12 June

Why gambling is a global public health problem, and what we can do about it

Associate Professor Charles Livingstone – Head, Gambling and Social Determinants Unit, School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University

Gambling is increasingly perceived as a major public health problem, with estimates of gambling-derived harm now indicating a harm burden around two-thirds that of alcohol misuse and abuse, and on a par with major depression. Yet gambling continues to expand, globally, and the gambling industry is rapidly expanding in low and middle income countries, having consolidated a significant market in high income countries.

This presentation, adapted from a recent seminar at WHO HQ, will explain the nature and scale of gambling harm globally, demonstrate that gambling can best be addressed by adopting effective public health approaches to harm prevention and minimisation, and provide suggestions on how to bring about a more unified and globally applicable approach to gambling harm prevention.

Associate Professor Charles Livingstone works in the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine, Monash University. He teaches health policy, sociology and politics into the Bachelor of Health Sciences program. He is also head of the Gambling and Social Determinants unit within SPHPM. Charles has research degrees in economics and social theory. His current principal research interest is critical gambling studies, including in particular gambling policy reform and the politics, regulation and social impacts of electronic gambling machine (EGM) gambling.

Wednesday 21 August

The globalisation of health and human rights

Dr Maithri Goonetilleke – Senior Lecturer in the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, Monash University

Global health lies at the nexus of global patterns of biological and social disorder. The last forty years of neoliberal globalisation have not just affected global economies but have had tangible impacts on the health and human rights of individuals and communities around the world. In this seminar we will explore the nature of these effects and consider the way forward for the health of our globalised world.

Dr Maithri Goonetilleke is a senior lecturer in the Department of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine. Having graduated medicine in 2006 he spent a large part of the next ten years working in rural parts of Swaziland, Southern Africa where he founded the non-government organisation Possible Dreams International (PDI). PDI works in 32 rural communities addressing social and structural determinants of health and is managed on the ground by local Swazi people. In addition to his work in Southern Africa he has also co-ordinated single doctor primary care clinics with the Daasanach people of Northern Kenya and the Orma tribe of Eastern Kenya. In Australia he has worked across a variety of clinical roles including medical and emergency registrar positions in tertiary hospitals, running sole-doctor emergency departments in rural areas, working with Indigenous communities, correctional facilities and community general practice.

Watch video recording
(Monash authcate required)

Wednesday 9 October

Finding the grey: an introduction to uncovering government documents, reports and data to inform health research

Cassandra Freeman – Subject Librarian with the Faculty of Medicine, Health Sciences and Nursing at Monash University Library

Public health requires an understanding and appreciation of policy and the impact of disease. Whilst much is available through the peer reviewed literature, there is a significant amount of valuable research that can be difficult to find that can also be essential in informing public health research. This 'grey literature' consists of information and research produced by organisations outside of the traditional commercial or academic publishing and distribution channels. It includes reports, working papers, government documents, white papers and evaluations. Cassandra will talk about strategies and tips to effectively find this literature and suggested ways to document and report how you have searched.

Cassandra Freeman is a Subject Librarian with the Faculty of Medicine, Health Sciences and Nursing at Monash University Library. Cassandra works with academic staff, researchers and students in subject areas that include Nursing, Public Health and Preventive Medicine. She has extensive experience providing subject specialist support through research consultations and development of programs for researchers around systematic literature searching and all aspects of scholarly communication.

Wednesday 30 October

Australia's healthcare system is about 120,000 years old

Professor Karen Adams – Director, Gukwonderuk Indigenous Unit, Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, Monash University

Australia’s First Peoples have the oldest continuing culture on the planet some 120,000 years old. This is underpinned by a robust and vibrant healthcare system that supports wellbeing in sophisticated and sustainable ways. So why is that studies of Indigenous health and wellbeing continually paint such poor pictures and describe deficits, problems and gaps? In this talk Professor Adams will discuss First Peoples' determinants of health and wellbeing which largely focus on sustainability, relationship and connection. These start in early life in south east Australia during pre-conception and continue on during and after birth through connection to country, family and community. This talk will also deconstruct the ongoing settler colonial discourse of "Indigenous health" that perpetuates myths, stereotypes and terra nullius. Essentially the questions will be asked - whose social determinants are these anyway and to whom does this health gap belong? Highlighted in this talk will be examples of emerging First People's healthcare that incorporate very old ways of knowing, being and doing.

Professor Karen Adams Is Wiradjuri and the Director of the Gukwonderuk Indigenous Unit in the Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences at Monash University. In this role, she oversees recruitment and support of Indigenous students into the health professions and Indigenous health teaching and learning across the Faculty. Her research has been multifaceted. Her PhD focused on use of Indigenous mathematics to map parents' and carers' social networks of wellbeing advice and support for Indigenous children. Most recently she worked with archivist specialists to research Indigenous maternal and child health practices in South East Australia documenting a number of reinvigorated wellbeing practices, such as, Welcome Baby to Country Ceremonies and Placenta Burial.


2018 · 2017