The timing of the recent Public Health Prevention Conference 2018 was notable.
It was too close to the Federal Budget to make a difference to the Budget outcomes. But it was just close enough to provide a vivid contrast to the Budget, which will not be remembered as particularly auspicious for public health and equity.
And it will also be remembered as one of the events that helped to farewell and pay tribute to retiring chief executive of the Public Health Association of Australia, Michael Moore. Another farewell will be held in Canberra this evening – follow the news from that at #ThanksMichaelMoore.
Thanks to all tweeps who helped share the #Prevention2018 news from the recent conference; this report would not have been possible without your work as Croakey was not at the actual event. Please keep in mind that this is a Twitter record of the discussions, and thus may not be complete.
Rousing call to action
In delivering the Douglas Gordon Oration, Roger Magnusson, Professor of Health Law and Governance at the Sydney Law School, The University of Sydney, called for regulatory action to counter the harmful impacts of alcohol and junk food marketing, raised concerns about the marketing of e-cigarettes, and identified neoliberalism as a health concern.
Many presenters – from the former PM Julia Gillard to longstanding public health advocates – shared advice and war stories.
Professor Rob Moodie, from the University of Melbourne, told participants that the most important vectors of the 21st century epidemics are not mosquitoes, ticks or lice – but the giant supranational tobacco, alcohol and ultra processed food and beverage corporations. He described what “public health professionals should know about the relentless, unethical, deceitful, cold-blooded, yet often highly innovative tactics these corporations employ”.
Mike Daube, Professor of Health Policy at Curtin University, noted the contrast between public debate focused on the negatives of a world class health system, and the relative lack of attention to the neglect of funding for public and preventive health.
Penny Hawe, Professor of Public Health, Menzies Centre for Health Policy and the Australian Prevention Partnership Centre at the University of Sydney, brought creativity and humour to the table.
Learning from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people
Dr Megan Williams from UTS, and a Croakey contributing editor
Focus on equity
Professor Andrew Wilson, director of the Australian Prevention Partnership Centre
Selfies and tributes
• Follow #ThanksMichaelMoore for photos and news from his farewell event in Canberra tonight (from 6-9pm on 9 May).