Speakers Details 2020 AGM

The Impact of Fine Airborne Particles on Cognitive Function and on Health Effects from COVID-19

Dr Rachel Tham., Ph.D. - Mary MacKillop Institute for Health Research, Australian Catholic University
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Dr Rachel Tham from Australian Catholic University in Melbourne is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Environmental Epidemiology. She is currently researching the role of air pollution, noise and the built environment on cognitive health.

The Impact of Fine Airborne Particles on Cognitive Function and Health Effects from COVID-19

Rachel will discuss what is currently known about the impact of fine particulate matter exposure on cognitive function. She will also explore the emerging research that indicates that there are notable relationships between air pollution exposure and COVID-19 infections and their health effects.


The Impact of Fine Ambient Airborne Particles and Landscape Fires on Human  Health

Conjoint Prof. Bin Jalaludin - University of New South Wales School of Public Health and Community Medicine
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Dr. Jalaludin is a senior public health physician and epidemiologist. He holds the position as conjoint professor, UNSW Sydney, and is one of the Chief Investigators, Centre for Air pollution, energy and health Research (NHMRC CRE). His research interests are in environmental health, population health and health services. Prof. Jalaludin has  published widely on ambient air pollution and health. With strong international collaborations especially in the Asia-Pacific region. Prof. Jalaludin is currently an expert advisor to the WHO/UNEP Thematic Working Group on Air Quality; external reviewer of air quality guidelines for WHO Europe Centre for Environment and Health; and, Co-founder and Research Leader, Asian Initiative for Research on Climate and Air Pollution.

The Impact of Fine Airborne Particles and Landscape Fires on Human  Health 

Ambient air pollution is a global issue. It is ranked sixth in terms of the global burden of disease with 7.5% of all deaths attributed to ambient air pollution (4.1 million deaths annually). It is not only associated with respiratory and cardiovascular disease, but also with diabetes, and adverse neurodevelopmental and birth outcomes. This presentation will focus on the effects of fine particles and landscape fires, the impact of transboundary air pollution and some recent data on ambient air pollution and COVID-19.


Airborne transmission of respiratory infections: the process and what to do about it

Dr Lidia Morawska, Ph.D. - Queensland University of Technology
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Lidia Morawska is a Professor at the Queensland University of Technology (QUT) in Brisbane, Australia, and the Director of the International Laboratory for Air Quality and Health (ILAQH) at QUT, which is a Collaborating Centre of the World Health Organization on Research and Training in the field of Air Quality and Health. She is also a co-director of the Australia-China Centre for Air Quality Science and Management. She conducts fundamental and applied research in the interdisciplinary field of air quality and its impact on human health and the environment, with a specific focus on science of airborne particulate matter. Professor Morawska is a physicist and received her doctorate at the Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland for research on radon and its progeny.  Dr Morawska is an author of over eight hundred journal papers, book chapters and refereed conference papers. She has been involved at the executive level with a number of relevant national and international professional bodies, is a member of the Australian Academy of Science and a recipient of numerous scientific awards.

Airborne transmission of respiratory infections: the process and what to do about it

A large body of evidence exists on the significance of the airborne transmission by inhalation of virus-laden respiratory aerosols originating from all human respiratory activities.  Aerosolisation in the various parts of the respiratory tract is how they are generated, and once in the air their fate depends on their size and the forces acting on them. While the concept is simple, the processes are complex, with additional complications arising from the confusion in the terminology and different interpretations within the various scientific disciplines involved.  The presentation will explore the physics of airborne transmission of respiratory infections, and the significance of controlling it, beyond COVID-19, with a vision of infection prevention in general.