The 2012 Health Sciences Research Day and Postgraduate Expo takes place on Wednesday, 19 September 2012 under the theme: Excellence. Relevance. Determination. Transforming Life through Research Excellence.
This biennial event exposes the staff and postgraduate students to leading research work taking place in the Faculty of Health Sciences. It is a showcase for relevant and exciting research discoveries in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Wits. It strengthens links, collaborations and co-ordination of research efforts amongst research entities and individuals working in the field of health sciences and related disciplines.
For 2012, presentations - both oral and posters - have been invited in five thematic tracks: infectious diseases; diseases of lifestyle; education, policy and systems; molecular and comparative biosciences; and clinical sciences and therapeutics for health. The themes were created to give an opportunity for all research - whether basic or clinical - to be showcased.
"The visibility of the Faculty's research has grown significantly in the last decade or so, and the breadths of the activities which have been performed are covered by the themes to envelope the whole breadth of research ongoing within the Faculty. The themes define the Faculty's activities," says Dr Bavesh Kana, HSRD Committee Chair and former HSRD winner.
The prizes are worth the effort for entrants: R20 000 is awarded for the best overall oral presentations and R10 000 for the best poster presentations. The best student oral presentation receives R5000 and the best poster presentation collects R2500 for each thematic track.
"By awarding big prizes we hope to encourage participation of the best of the Faculty's research, to make it incredibly competitive and to have huge prestige associated with it. The history speaks accordingly -previous winners have had their studies published in high impact journals and have been invited to present their work at international conferences. The value of the prizes raises the bar of the event and Research Day could be seen as a good indicator of what's to come in terms of imminent research breakthroughs," says Kana.
Prof. Beverley Kramer, Assistant Dean for Research and Postgraduate Support in the Faculty of Health Sciences says she is excited to see young researchers excel during the 2012 HSRD.
"We need to see that our emerging researchers are well-trained and that they stay at Wits in the long term," says Kramer.
The following round table discussions also take place during HSRD, hosted by the HSRD Organising Committee, addressing South Africa many unique health challenges which currently threaten to undermine its overall economic, social and technological advancement - Tuberculosis (TB) and AIDS.
A world without AIDS?
Discussion leader: Lynn Morris: National Institute for Communicable Diseases of the NHLS/Wits
Penelope Moore - NICD of the NHLS/Wits on Research towards a cure
Francois Venter - WRHI on PreP and prevention