Plenary speakers


Anthony Staines

Chair of the 14th EPH Conference 2021 and Professor of Health Systems

Anthony Staines is Professor of Health Systems at the Centre for Integrated Care and School of Nursing, Psychotherapy and Community Health, Dublin City University, Dublin, Ireland. He is an epidemiologist and a  public health consultant whose research focusses on the uses of (digital) information in health care. He has a particular interest in child health and disability. Working closely with the Health Intelligence Unit in the Health Services Executive in Ireland, he has led a number of projects to deliver innovative health information approaches in Ireland and Europe.
He teaches on programmes in public health and health systems within DCU, and on digital health in an innovative national programme led by the Health Services Executive.
He was formerly the chair of the Irish Blood Transfusion service, and now leads St. Michael’s House, one of the larger providers of services for people with Intellectual Disability in Ireland.

Regien Biesma-Blanco

Chair of the International Scientific Committee 2021

Regien Biesma is an epidemiologist / public health specialist with a research focus on estimating and reducing the disparity gap in maternal, neonatal and child health outcomes in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC). She has a particular interest is global nutrition. Her work explores factors during (pre)pregnancy, birth outcomes, early child growth and health and disease later in life.
She works at the Global Health Unit, Faculty of Medical Sciences, University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG), Groningen, the Netherlands, where she coordinates the advanced research master programme on Health Systems and Prevention, supervises PhD candidates and coordinates the ‘Safe Motherhood’ PhD Network. Before joining UMCG in 2018, she spent 11 years at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland where she lectured in Global Public Health and Epidemiology and worked on health systems and policy research in Africa and Asia. She was an invited expert for the World Health Organization expert consultation on maximizing positive synergies between health systems and Global Health Initiatives.
Regien Bosma is a research fellow at the Aletta School of Public Health, the Netherlands and a member of the Netherlands Working Group on international Nutrition and the Scientific Advisory Board of the Lifecourse Nutrition Center, Agder University, Norway.

José Alcami Pertejo

National Centre for Microbiology, Institute of Health Carlos III, Madrid, Spain

Jose Alcami Pertejo directs the AIDS Immunopathology Unit at the National Centre for Microbiology within the Institute of Health Carlos III, Madrid, Spain. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, he is also the coordinator of the Scientific Analysis Group on Coronavirus, in charge of writing scientific and technical reports on prevention, diagnosis, treatment and management of the virus and the disease. Dr Alcamí works very actively in dissemination in science through social networks YouTube: El maletín del Dr Pepe and Twitter: @pepealcami.

Andrea Ammon

Director European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC)

Dr Andrea Ammon, MD, MPH, was appointed Director of ECDC in June 2017. From April 2011 to April 2015, Andrea Ammon was Deputy to the Director and Head of Unit for Resource Management and Coordination. From May 2015, she was ECDC’s Acting Director.
Andrea joined ECDC as the Head of the Surveillance Unit in 2005. The unit was responsible for developing The European Surveillance System (TESSy), implementing a long-term surveillance strategy for the European Union (EU), evaluating the Dedicated Surveillance Networks (DSN) and producing an Annual Epidemiological Report on infectious diseases in the EU.
Prior to joining the ECDC, Dr Ammon served in several roles at the Robert Koch-Institute, Germany, most recently as Head of Department for Infectious Disease Epidemiology. In this capacity, she maintained and further developed the German national surveillance system; coordinated the national outbreak response team for current and emerging infections; coordinated emergency planning for influenza; coordinated epidemiological research programmes in infectious diseases and provided scientific advice for government Ministries, Members of Parliament, and the public.

Natasha Azzopardi Muscat

Director Country Health Systems and Policies, WHO Regional Office for Europe

Natasha Azzopardi Muscat is the Director for Country Health Systems and Policies at the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe. She is a medical doctor and specialist in public health medicine. She obtained her PhD from Maastricht University. Between 2001 and 2013 she occupied senior positions in the Ministry of Health in Malta including that of Chief Medical Officer. She is the Past President of the European Public Health Association (EUPHA) as well as the President of the EUPHA section on Public Health Practice and Policy. 


Ran Balicer

Chief Innovation Officer, Clalit Health Services, Israel

Ran Balicer serves as Chief Innovation Officer for Clalit - Israel's largest healthcare organization that covers over half Israel’s population. He is a Founding Director of the Clalit Research Institute, and in this capacity as Head of the WHO Collaborating Center on Non-Communicable Diseases Research, Prevention and Control. In these roles, he is responsible for development and large-scale implementation of novel AI and data-driven interventions, aimed at and shown to effect improving healthcare quality, reducing disparities and increasing care effectiveness.
He is Full Professor of the MPH program at the Ben-Gurion University School of Public Health, Israel. He is also the Head of the Public Health Medical Residents Training Program of Clalit Health Services. In these capacities he has served as mentor for Medical Doctors and advanced studies students over the years. He has authored over 200 scientific publications, books and book chapters. Since 2020, he serves as Chairman of Israel's National Experts Team on COVID-19 Response, which advises the Israeli Government and Prime Minister Office. He has led international scientific research on COVID-19 risk stratification, vaccine effectiveness and vaccine safety.

Petronille Bogaert

President EUPHA Public health monitoring and reporting section

Petronille Bogaert is project researcher and head of unit EU health information systems at Sciensano, Belgium. Her work primarily focusses on European research projects in the area of population health information.  She is coordinating the Population Health Information Research Infrastructure for COVID-19 which aims to strengthen the exchange of COVID-19 health information with 41 partners in 30 countries. Other European projects she is involved in include the Joint Action Towards the European Health Data Space and HealthyCloud. She is a graduate from a double European Master of Public Health. She also holds a Bsc and Msc in Biomedical Sciences and is PhD candidate at Tilburg University, The Netherlands. She is president of the EUPHA section on Public Health Monitoring and Reporting and she sits in the ESCAIDE Scientific Committee.

Patrick ten Brink

Deputy Secretary General and Director of EU Policy European Environmental Bureau (EEB)

Patrick ten Brink is EEB’s Deputy Secretary General, responsible also for the EEB’s EU Policy Unit as well for a range of horizontal dossiers, including EU presidencies, better regulation, EU budget, fiscal reform, the environmental action programmes (EAPs) and oversight on the European Green Deal. He is on Seas at Risks’ Management Committee and ECOS’ Executive Committee, and is a member of the Stakeholder Group of the Fit for Future Platform. Before joining the EEB, he was the Director of IEEP-Brussels and head of its Green Economy Programme. He has worked extensively on circular economy and marine litter, green tax reform, subsidy reform, climate policy, and biodiversity policy. His past work contributed to the Passenger Cars and CO2 regulation, the Industrial Emissions Directive, the Regulation on Invasive Alien Species and the Regulation on Access and Benefits Sharing of genetic resources. He has a Masters in Environmental and Natural Resource Economics and a joint honours Physics and Philosophy degree.

Hans Bruyninckx

Executive Director European Environment Agency

Hans Bruyninckx completed a PhD degree in 1996 at Colorado State University, United States, on the topic of international environmental politics. From 2010 until his appointment at the EEA, he was head of the HIVA Research Institute of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven, Belgium. He was a senior member of the interdisciplinary Leuven Centre for Global Governance Studies. Over the last 20 years, he has conducted and managed policy-oriented research in the areas of environmental politics, climate change, and sustainable development. He was responsible for research in the domains of policy evaluation, monitoring and reporting, methodology development, environmental policy integration, and more recently also on long-term transition policies. His academic expertise lies primarily in the field of European and international environmental policy, studying the effects of globalisation on the global governance of environmental issues and sustainable development. He has published extensively on EU environmental policies and its role as an actor in global environmental governance. He was involved in numerous policy processes as an advisory board member, involved in steering groups of government agencies, and as academic policy advisor to governmental agencies and other key actors.

Reinhard Busse

Professor and Head of the Department of Health Care Management at the Berlin University of Technology, Germany

Reinhard Busse is co-director of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies and leads the Berlin hub. He is also a member of several scientific advisory boards and a regular consultant for the European Commission, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, WHO, other international organizations within Europe and beyond, and national health and research institutions.
His research focuses on methods and contents of comparative health system analysis and assessment as well as health services (with an emphasis on hospitals, human resources, cross-border care, health reforms in Germany, the role of the EU, financing and payment mechanisms, and disease management), health economics and health technology assessment.
Since 2011, he has been Editor in Chief of the international peer-reviewed journal Health Policy. Since 2012, he has been Director of the Berlin Centre of Health Economics Research. Since 2015, he has also been Speaker of the Board of the newly founded interuniversity Berlin School of Public Health. In 2016/2017, he was President of the German Health Economics Association.

Stefan Buttigieg

Vice-president, EUPHA Digital health section and Co-founder, Digital Health Malta

Dr Buttigieg is a Specialist in Public Health Medicine with an avid interest in Clinical Informatics, Social Media and Digital Health. He currently lectures at the University of Malta Faculty of Health Sciences on the topics of Digital Health and Social Media in Healthcare. He is also an Author, Tutor and Digital Health Consultant focused on creating transformative and effective change. Within the World Federation of Public Health Association Governing Council, he represents the voices of Students and Young Professionals in Public Health and he is also the Vice-President of the EUPHA Section on Digital Health.

Dr Buttigieg is consistently focused on expanding his knowledge within the field of Public Health, Social Media, Digital Health and Project Management with the main aim of empowering healthcare professionals to design, develop and distribute user-centric applications for healthcare. The determination to establish contacts with people from all walks of life energises him to get the best out of people and help them achieve their goals and vision through the use of information and technology.

Tara Chen

Young professional

Tara Chen is a young public health professional working to strengthen health systems with a vision that “everything & everywhere is public health”. She holds a Bachelor of Health Sciences from Western University (Canada), and a dual Masters of Public Health (Europubhealth+). She is passionate about health systems, SDGs, environmental health, climate change, ageing populations and health literacy. Tara is currently the co-chair for International health Literacy Association's Health Literacy Explorers Interest Group, and is a strong advocate for amplifying young voices in dialogue and practice.

Caroline Costongs

Director EuroHealthNet

Caroline Costongs is Director of EuroHealthNet, a European Partnership for improving health, equity and wellbeing, based in Brussels. Caroline has an MSc in Public Health from the University of Maastricht (The Netherlands) and her main work focuses on policy, advocacy, research and capacity building in the field of health inequalities, health promotion across the life course, sustainable development and “Health in all Policies”. She is a Board member of APHEA (Public Health Accreditation Agency) and member of the International Council for the European Public Health Conference. Caroline has also worked at the Netherlands Olympic Committee and Sports Confederation (NOC*NSF) on physical activity promotion for young people.  Before that, she was active at the Health Institute of the Liverpool John Moores University where she did research on healthy public policies in cities and at the National Capacity Building Institute (INICE) of the Honduras Ministry of Education.

Jens Degett

Editor in Chief Science Stories

Jens Degett is Editor in Chief of Science Stories, a science media platform he created in 2019. A biologist by training, he is a science journalist since 1990. He started as presenter and anchor of radio programmes of the Danish Broadcasting Corporation (DR). In 2000, he became Head of Communications of the European Science Foundation (ESF) in Strasbourg. In 2005, he was the director of an EU project on health and food research in developing countries (EAGLES) while based in Madrid, Spain.
Jens Degett has been a freelance science journalist, writing for Nature and other magazines and created The EuroScientist in 2006. One of the founders of the EuroScience Open Forum (ESOF), he created the European Conference for Science Journalist (ECSJ) in conjunction with ESOF2014 in Copenhagen.
He is President of EUSJA (European Union of Science Journalists Associations) and formerly the chairman of the Danish Science Journalists’ Association.

Ioannis Dimitrakopoulos

Scientific advisor European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights

Ioannis Dimitrakopoulos is the scientific advisor of the Agency. A social scientist, he has lectured and conducted national and transnational research on a broad range of human rights issues, including on discrimination, racism, antisemitism, Roma inclusion, rights of the child, migration, etc. He has worked for the Agency since its establishment and has been responsible for many of its major reports.

Stephen Donnelly

Minister of Health, Ireland

Stephen Donelly is Minister of health and MP for for Wicklow and East Carlow, Ireland. He ran for office in 2011, in response to Ireland’s growing economic and social crises. At the time he was working as a management consultant for McKinsey & Co., specialising in transformational change for large public and private sector organisations. He has worked across many sectors, including private equity, retail, public infrastructure, healthcare, education, international development, the voluntary and social sectors. At the Harvard Kennedy School he studied international development, with a focus on rebuilding economies and protecting and strengthening vulnerable populations.

Michael Edelstein

President EUPHA Infectious diseases control section

Michael Edelstein is a medical doctor specialized in infectious disease epidemiology. He is currently the president of the Infectious Diseases Control section of the European Public Health Association and leads on immunization data at Public Health England, England’s national public health agency. He is also a member of the World Health Organization’s  working group on immunization data quality, a research fellow at the Centre on Global Health Security, Chatham House, an honorary associate professor at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. In recent years he has also responded to large scale public health emergencies in Asia and Africa, including the West African Ebola outbreak.

Sandra Gallina

Director-General – Directorate General for Health and Food Safety (DG SANTE)

Sandra Gallina joined the European Commission in 1988. Currently, she serves as Director General for Health and Food Safety (DG SANTE). Before joining DG SANTE, between 2018 and 2020 she was Deputy Director General for Trade. Between 2014 and 2018 she was Director for DG TRADE Directorate “Sustainable Development; Economic Partnership Agreements - African, Caribbean and Pacific; Agri-food and Fisheries”. Sandra Gallina was also the EU chief negotiator for the EU-MERCOSUR Free Trade Agreement.
Between 2001 and 2009 she was the EU Lead Negotiator for Non-Agricultural Market Access in the WTO Doha Round and in that capacity, she defined and presented EU policy for the Doha Development Agenda on non-agricultural market access negotiations. Before joining DG TRADE, she worked in the Directorate General for Taxation and Customs Union (DG TAXUD) at the end of the 1990s.

Simone George

Human rights lawyer and activist, Ireland

Simone George is a human rights lawyer and activist. As a human rights lawyer, she represents women who are experiencing abuse and is presently researching why those in our systems do not adequately serve justice. She co-authored the report ‘The Lawlessness of the Home’ with an Irish NGO. finding that we are all responsible for women and children’s right to bodily integrity and to liberty. She co-created a summit in 2016 on women and children’s rights, gathering the world’s foremost thinkers and activists together in Dublin. This work led to significant amendments to legislation and a new landscape of social and political justice in Ireland.

She gave a TED talk with her partner, blind and paralyzed adventure athlete Mark Pollock, at the TED Conference in Vancouver. She is a director on the board of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, a masters graduate from The College of Europe, Bruges, and holds a diploma from Harvard.

Clayton Hamilton

Regional Adviser, Digital Health Flagship, WHO Regional Office for Europe

Mr. Clayton Hamilton leads the digital health flagship programme within the WHO Regional Office for Europe’s Division for Country Health Policies and Systems, providing support and guidance on all aspects of digital health and innovation to support health systems strengthening and reform in the Region’s 53 Member States.

With a background in ICT development and business management and over 22 years of UN experience working in the fields of technology, digital health, and public health, Mr. Hamilton provides strategic guidance to assist countries in their development of national digital health programmes within the framework of delivering on WHO’s triple billion targets and in working towards the achievement of the UN Agenda for Sustainable Development.

In working to accelerate the uptake of safe and inclusive digital health services for all, Mr. Hamilton leads the development of dialogue and regional guidance on digital health and innovation, establishes partnerships with major international stakeholders working to reform health systems and public health, and provides thought leadership on the adoption of frontier digital technologies to improve access to healthcare and empower individuals in their choices for better health and well-being.

Rok Hric

Rok Hrzic is a lecturer and researcher at the Department for International Health at Maastricht University, and an affiliated doctoral student with the International Max Planck Research School on Population, Health and Data Science. He is a physician by training and holds MSc degrees in Epidemiology and in Governance and Leadership in European Public Health. His work focuses on the relationship between European integration and geographic disparities in health, novel sources of health data, and indicators of population health and health system performance.

Cecily Kelleher

Chair of Public Health Medicine and Epidemiology, University College Dublin, Ireland

Cecily Kelleher is Chair of Public Health Medicine and Epidemiology at University College Dublin (UCD), Ireland. She has been the Principal of the College of Health and Agricultural Sciences in UCD since 2015. She previously served as Dean and head of the UCD School of Public Health, Physiotherapy and Sports Science. Cecily Kelleher is the former Chair on the statutory Women’s Health Council and served as Chair for the report to the Minister for Health in the Republic of Ireland of the COVID-19 Nursing Homes Expert Panel on Examination of Measures to 2021. Her main areas of research are on lifecourse epidemiology and cardiovascular disease, childhood obesity, traveller health, and the public health impacts of tobacco smoke.

Daire Keough

President Dublin City University (DCU), Ireland

Professor Daire Keogh began his term as President of DCU in July 2020. He previously served as Deputy President of the University (2016-2020). Prior to that, he was President of St Patrick’s College, Drumcondra (2012-2016), and played a key role in its incorporation with DCU. Daire has published extensively, on the history of popular politics, religion and education in Ireland. A former Government of Ireland Senior Research Fellow, he is currently Principal Investigator of an Irish Research Council funded project to publish the extensive correspondence of Cardinal Paul Cullen.
He is a founding member of the European Quality Assurance Register Committee, the body charged by EU Governments with monitoring quality assurance in higher education across the continent. He is a Chartered Director and is a member of several Boards including Women for Election. Daire is also a member of the Irish Association of the Order of Malta, and he recently completed a term as a Council member of the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment, and a Board member of the Centre for Cross Border Studies (2012-2017). Daire is a graduate of the National University of Ireland (BA), the Gregorian University Rome (BPh), the University of Glasgow (MTh) and the University of Dublin (PhD).

Stella Kyriakides

Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, European Commission

Stella Kyriakides has been serving as European Commissioner for Health and Food Safety since 2019. As Commissioner, she has been responsible for launching Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan to help improve cancer prevention and care and exploring ways to ensure Europe has enough affordable medicines to meet its needs. She is also leading the new ‘Farm to Fork’ strategy for sustainable food. Before becoming Commissioner, she served as the first Cypriot national and third woman President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. From 2006 to 2019 she was a member of the House of Representatives of the Republic of Cyprus. In addition to her parliamentary activities, she was appointed president of the First Breast Cancer Movement in Cyprus in 1999. From 2004 until 2006, she served as president of the European Breast Cancer Coalition Europa Donna. In 2016, she was appointed President of the National Committee on Cancer Strategy of the Council of Europe. Stella Kyriakides received a degree in psychology at the University of Reading and a master's degree in child maladjustmentat the University of Manchester.

Naomi Lee

Senior Executive Editor The Lancet

Naomi Lee is a Senior Executive Editor at The Lancet. She heads the research section of the journal, and handles peer review and commissioning across a broad range of subjects including her specialist areas of surgery, oncology, digital medicine/AI, and medical technology.  She is also a vice chair for the ITU/WHO Focus Group on Artificial Intelligence for Health. Naomi joined The Lancet in 2014. Previously she studied medicine at Cambridge University and King’s College London, before training in surgery, specialising in urology and working for almost 10 years in the United Kingdom. She has completed fellowships in Argentina and Mexico. She has also studied data science at University College London.

Suszy Lessof

European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies

Suszy Lessof is Coordinator of the Observatory and based in Brussels.  She works with the Observatory team and the Steering Committee to ensure the Observatory’s work plan focuses on policy priorities and adds value. Her role includes liaising with colleagues, partners and key stakeholders to align the Observatory’s work with what others (in Member States, the WHO Regional Office for Europe and the European Commission), are doing in the area of health systems and policies. 

Suszy has oversight of the country monitoring function with its HiT series, the State of Health in the EU profiles, the Health Systems and Policies Monitor (HSPM) and is supporting developments on monitoring COVID (HSRM) and to extend the reach of the Observatory’s health systems review. 

She is also part of developing and strengthening knowledge brokering, capturing the tacit knowledge built up over time in guidance and process on how to share evidence and strengthening Observatory practice.


Isabel de la Mata

European Commision

Isabel de la Mata is currently the Principal Adviser for Health and Crisis Management in the European Commission. Previously, she worked as Counsellor for Health and Consumers at the Permanent Representation of Spain to the EU, as Deputy Director General for Health Planning at the Spanish Ministry of Health, as Adviser to the Vice-minister of Health and several other posts at the Ministry of Health of Spain and the Regional Departments in the Basque Country and in Madrid. In addition, she has been a member of the EURO-WHO Standing Committee of the Regional Committee, and has worked with the Pan American Health Organisation, the Inter-American Development Bank and the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation. Isabel de la Mata graduated in Medicine and Surgery by the University of Basque Country in 1983 and holds post-graduate degrees from the University of Leuven and Paris VI in Public Health, Hospital Administration and Statistics. She is a specialist in Preventive Medicine and Public Health.

Susan Michie

University College London, United Kingdom

Susan Michie is Professor of Health Psychology and Director of the Centre for Behaviour Change at University College London, United Kingdom. Her research focuses on human behaviour change in relation to health and the environment: how to understand it theoretically and apply theory and evidence to intervention and policy development, evaluation and implementation. Her research, collaborating with disciplines such as information science, environmental science, computer science and medicine, covers population, organisational and individual level interventions. She is an investigator on more than 15 research projects, including three addressing behaviour and the Covid-19 pandemic. She has published over 500 journal articles and several books, including the Behaviour Change Wheel: A Guide to Designing Interventions. She serves as an expert advisor on the UK’s Scientific Pandemic Insights Group on Behavioural Science, the Lancet’s Covid-19 Commission and as a member of the UK’s Independent SAGE. She serves on WHO’s Behavioural Insights and Sciences Technical Advisory Group, is Chair of the UK Food Standard Agency’s Advisory Committee for Social Sciences, is part of NIHR’s Behavioural Science Policy Research Unit, led UCL’s membership of NIHR’s School of Public Health Research and chaired the Academy of Social Science’s ‘Health of People’ project.  

John Middleton

President Association of  Schools  of  Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER)

John Middeleton is the current President of the Association of  Schools of Public Health in the European Region (ASPHER). He is Honorary Professor of Public Heath at Wolverhampton University and  Visiting Professor of  Public Health at Chester  University, United Kingdom. He was President of the United Kingdom Faculty of Public Health, the standard setting body for public health professionals in the United Kingdom until June 2019. He was Director of Public Health for Sandwell in the West Midlands of England for 27 years; until he retired in 2014, he was the longest serving DPH in England. He was awarded Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians (London) in September 2015. He lives in Coventry in the West Midlands. He has interests in environmental health, sustainable development and violence prevention.  In another life he is a blues harmonica player with albums on spotify and apple music.

Iveta Nagyova

President European Public Health Association (EUPHA)

Iveta Nagyova is the President of the European Public Health Association (EUPHA) and the Head of the Department of Social and Behavioural Medicine, Faculty of Medicine at Pavol Jozef Safarik University (UPJS) in Kosice, Slovakia. She also serves as a member of several advisory committees at WHO and WHO/Europe, including the WHO Technical Advisory Group on Behavioural Insights and Sciences for Health, the WHO/Europe’s Regional Director’s Advisory Council on Innovation for Noncommunicable Diseases, the Behavioural and Cultural Insights working groups, and the European Advisory Committee on Health Research (EACHR). She graduated in Clinical Psychology at UPJS, obtained her PhD in Medical Sciences from the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, and received a postgraduate training at the University of Oxford within the Oxford International Primary Care Research Leadership Programme. Her research interests are in biobehavioural and psychosocial innovations in chronic disease prevention and management, non-pharmacological interventions, health behaviour change, and behavioural insights in public health. She is involved in academic publishing, supervision of PhD students, and knowledge translation. At the national level, she serves as an advisor to the WHO Country Office and the Slovak Ministry of Health.

Maria Neira

Director Public Health, Environment and Social Determinants of Health Department, World Health Organization

Maria P. Neira has been directing the Department of Environment, Climate Change and  Health at the World Health Organization, Geneva, Switzerland since 2005. Throughout her tenure and up until now she has led and advised on policy and management in key areas of environmental health. Prior to that she served as Under-Secretary of Health and President of the Spanish Food Safety Agency. From 1993-1998 she was Coordinator of the Global Task Force on Cholera Control.
Maria Neira Is a medical doctor by training and specialized in Endocrinology and Metabolic Diseases; and Public Health. She began her career as a medical coordinator working with refugees in El Salvador and Honduras for Médecins Sans Frontières (Doctors Without Borders). She then spent several years working in different African countries during armed conflicts. 
Among many distinctions, she received an “Extraordinary Woman” award by HM Queen Letizia of Spain. In early 2019, she was nominated among the top 100 policy influencers in health and climate change.

Anna Odone

President EUPHA Digital health section

Anna Odone is Associate Professor of Public Health at the Faculty of Medicine, University Vita-Salute San Raffaele, Milan, Italy. Responsible for the Unit of Clinical Epidemiology and Health Technology Assessment (HTA) at San Raffaele Scientific Institute, she is the President of the Digital Health Section of the European Public Health Association (EUPHA). Passionate about the value of public health, she is mentor to public health researchers, residents and PhD students; her research is in the field of infectious diseases control, with a focus on vaccines and immunisation programmes and policies, digital public health and HTA.
Anna Odone qualified in Medicine and specialized in Hygiene and Public Health at the University of Parma, Italy. She received an M.Sc. in Epidemiology  from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (London, UK) and an MPH in Health Policy and Management as a Fulbright Scholar from the Harvard School of Public Health (Boston, US). She holds a PhD in Medical Sciences from the University of Parma.

Kerstin Vesna Petrič

Director-General of the Directorate for Public Health, Ministry of Health,Slovenia

Kerstin Vesna Petrič currently holds the position of Director-General of the Directorate for Public Health at the Ministry of Health of Slovenia. She assumed this position following a successful sixteen-year engagement as Head of the Division for Health Promotion and Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases at the Directorate for Public Health at the Ministry of Health of Slovenia.  From 1998 to 2004 she was the Head of Office for WHO relations at the Ministry of Health of Slovenia and acted as WHO Liaison Officer. She was a member of the WHO Standing Committee of the Regional Committee for Europe (SCRC) from 2016 to 2019. Kerstin Vesna Petrič is also a member of Executive Board of WHO from 2020. During her career she contributed and led processes of implementation of different policies in area of alcohol and tobacco control as well as illicit drugs.

Tina Purnat

Department of Global Infectious Hazard Preparedness, World Health Organization

Tina Purnat is Team Lead for Infodemic Management in the Unit for High Impact Events Preparedness, Department of Global Infectious Hazard Preparedness at WHO. She has worked for over 20 years at the WHO, European Union and academia, Her expertise amalgamates health research, analysis and policy-making with an emphasis on promoting the use of health information and evidence in decision-making and for policy-making. As part of the WHO COVID-19 response, she worked in developing and formulating WHO infodemic response and infodemic management interventions, for which she received the WHO Pathfinder and Innovation Award 2021.

Bernd Rechel

European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies

Bernd Rechel is Researcher at the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, based at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). He is coordinator, author and editor of Observatory studies and Health Systems in Transition (HiT) reviews. His research focuses on health systems and policies, human resources, capital investment, public health, and migration and health. He is Honorary Associate Professor at LSHTM and teaches on health policy, health systems and public health and is a supervises PhD students. He contributes to the Health Systems and Policy Monitor (HSPM) and the COVID-19 Health Systems Response Monitor (HSRM). He has worked extensively on health systems and policies in the countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia and on migration and health in the European Union.
Bernd Rechel holds a bachelor’s degree in sociology, a master’s degree in race and ethnic studies, and a PhD in Russian and East European studies.

Monica Scatasta

Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB)

Monica Scatasta is Director of the CEB’s Technical Assessment and Monitoring Directorate. Before joining CEB in March 2020, she worked over twenty years in police advisory and policy finance in institutions like the European Investment Bank (EIB), the OECD, and the World Bank.  As Head of Environmental, Social and Climate Policy at the EIB, she contributed to its transformation as the ‘EU Climate Bank’. She headed the EIB Water and Waste management Division and as a sector economist she contributed to over 100 projects worldwide. She holds advanced degrees in economics, finance, environmental policy and engineering from the University of Bologna and Johns Hopkins University.

Ines Siepmann

Ines Siepmann is a young public health professional with a focus on transferring health equity theory to policy and practice. She completed dual master's degrees through the Europubhealth+ programme, earning an MPH from the University of Sheffield and an MSc in Governance and Leadership in European Public Health at Maastricht University. She currently works as a policy researcher at Rohde Public Policy, coordinates the Young Professionals Program for ASPHER and participates in ASPHER’s COVID-19 Task Force. Her research focus is primarily on public health capacity building through equitable and effective communication and inclusion of marginalized voices.

Robin Swann

Minister of Health, Northern Ireland

Robin Swann was appointed Minister of Health in the Northern Ireland Assembly on 11 January 2020. A father of two young children, he was first elected as an MLA for North Antrim in 2011.
Before his appointment as Minister he held a number of posts including Chairman of the Public Accounts Committee, Chairman of the Employment and Learning Committee, Assembly Commissioner, as well as Party Leader and Chief Whip of the Ulster Unionist Party.
He is an active member of Kells & Connor Community Association and has served as a Board member of the Volunteer Development Agency in Northern Ireland.

Laura de la Torre Perez

Barcelona Institute for Global Health (ISGlobal), Spain

Laura de la Torre works as a Medical Research Fellow in the TB unit of the Barcelona Institute for Global Health, ISGlobal, Spain. Laura is a medical Public Health specialist and holds a master's degree in Public Health from Universitat Pompeu Fabra, in Barcelona. She worked in hospital surveillance and contact tracing during the first wave of COVID-19  in Spain, was part of the Catalan Regional Health Ministry Advisory group of the COVID-19 crisis, and collaborated with the evaluation of the contact tracing structure in the Regional Health Ministry in Cantabria, Spain. During her specialization, Laura worked in qualitative, quantitative, and economic evaluations; in patient safety and participatory research projects. She was president of the European Network of Medical Residents in Public Health, and she has been part of EUPHA since the beginning of her residency. She now works in various TB epidemiological studies in Sub-Saharan Africa as part of the TB research team in ISGlobal.

Tobias Weitzel

Tobias Weitzel is a MSc Global Health candidate at the University of Copenhagen and has a background in International Relations and Public Policy. His research interests are evidence-based health policy, health systems and epidemiology. He is currently a thesis student with the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, investigating the public health response to COVID-19 in Denmark and Germany.
Tobias has contributed to various initiatives for young professionals in public health and is a founding member of the ASPHER young professionals programme.

Dineke Zeegers Paget

Executive Director European Public Health Association (EUPHA)

Dineke Zeegers Paget is the Executive Director of EUPHA - the European Public Health Association – a network of national public health associations aimed at voicing knowledge and capacity building. Dineke has a law degree, followed by a PhD on comparing AIDS legislation in the world (1996).  Before starting to work at EUPHA in 1997, she worked at the World Health Organization HQ and the University of Groningen where she worked on legal issues and human rights related to AIDS. Between 1992 and 1997, she worked at the Swiss Federal Ministry of Public Health, as a coordinator of AIDS projects in specific target groups and health promotion in prisons.