Minister of Health delivers the keynote address at CAPRISA’s annual Research and Awards day

28 February 2020

Dr Zweli Mkhize, the honorable Minister of Health in South Africa, delivered the keynote address at CAPRISA’s annual Research Update and Awards day held on 11 February at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban. He was accompanied by his wife Dr May Mashego. The meeting held on the 30th anniversary of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison, was a tribute to the Nobel Laureate’s commitment to end the HIV epidemic through rigorous scientific research.

The annual meeting brought together translational and basic scientists, behavioural and clinical researchers from leading research organisations, globally: the NICD, UCT, Columbia University, UKZN, SAMRC, CIDRZ, IRCE, IRESSEF and the Botswana Harvard AIDS Institute.

Dignatries included the Deputy Director General of Health Dr Yogan Pillay, US Consul General Sherry Sykes, US Health Attache Sophia Siddiqui, the acting Head of Health in KZN Jacqueline Ngozo and senior representatives from the EDCTP, UNAIDS, Department of Science and Innovation, National Research Foundation, NHLS and SANAC.

Dr Mkhize outlined government’s extensive plan to control the epidemic and acknowledged the scientific and innovative accomplishments of CAPRISA in HIV prevention, particularly in women-initiated technologies.

Professor Salim Abdool Karim presented an overview of CAPRISA’s research in 2019 and the panel discussion, ‘Research making a difference’, facilitated Prof Quarraisha Abdool Karim, associate Scientific Director, CAPRISA. with panelists Dr M Mugabe (UNAIDS), Dr Y Pillay (DoH), Ms G Loots (DST) & Dr SSS Buthelezi (SANAC) was a robust discussion.

The CAPRISA Conversation Africa Science Communication award for the best science article written by a post doc student was won by Dr Simone Richardson from the National Institute for Communicable Diseases (NICD). 

At the awards ceremony staff received long service awards for five and ten years of service to CAPRISA. CAPRISA’s 2020 strategic planning meeting followed with new ideas presented by senior and emerging researchers