About this event

  • Date and time Thu 20 Feb 2020 from 12:30pm to 5:30pm
  • Location Royal Society of Medicine

In 2019, the UK lost its measles-free status from the World Health Organisation, as child vaccination rates in the country fell across the board.

With a programme designed specifically for healthcare professionals, this unique event will focus on understanding why vaccination rates are in decline.

Experts will gather at the Royal Society of Medicine to share their knowledge about this topical, controversial and globally recognised issue, to enable better understanding and learning.

The programme will explore the extent to which vaccine hesitancy is a factor, how far delivery problems are responsible, and what can be done to address falling vaccination rates.

Topics include:

  • Why vaccination rates are falling, looking at the data, trends and factors involved
  • Understanding the extent to which vaccine hesitancy and misinformation around vaccines is affecting vaccination rates, with a particular focus on the impact of social media
  • Direct experiences from frontline staff who talk daily with patients, parents, and children, and advice on responding to the questions and concerns raised
  • Practical takeaways on how to address falling vaccination rates, both on a micro-level for frontline staff, and on a macro-level in terms of public health strategies.

Join in the conversation online using #RSMSpotlight
Follow us on Twitter: @RoySocMed

Key speakers

Mary Ramsay

Dr Mary Ramsay

Head of Immunisation, Public Health England

Speaker's biography

As a consultant epidemiologist and Head of Immunisation for PHE, Dr Ramsay’s department is responsible for the national surveillance of vaccine-preventable diseases and for the national planning and implementation of all routine immunisation programmes in England.

 

Dr Ramsay acts as PHE medical advisor to the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation and as Chief Editor of “Immunisation against Infectious Disease”. She also provides expert advice to a range of UK and international agencies on vaccination policy and is the PHE lead on the joint NIHR Health Protection Research Unit on Immunisation (with the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine).

 

Dr Ramsay has also served on the Research Panel both Meningitis Research Foundation and Meningitis Now.

Heidi Larson

Dr Heidi Larson

Director of The Vaccine Confidence Project, London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine

Speaker's biography

Dr Heidi J Larson is an anthropologist and Director of The Vaccine Confidence Project (VCP); Professor of Anthropology, Risk and Decision Science, Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology, LSHTM; Associate Professor, Department of Global Health, University of Washington; and Chatham House Centre on Global Health Security Fellow. Dr Larson previously headed Global Immunisation Communication at UNICEF, chaired GAVI's Advocacy Task Force, and served on the WHO SAGE Working Group on vaccine hesitancy. The VCP is a WHO Centre of Excellence on addressing Vaccine Hesitancy.

 

Dr Larson's research focuses on the analysis of social and political factors that can affect the uptake of health interventions and influence policies. Her particular interest is on risk and rumour management from clinical trials to delivery – and building public trust. She served on the FDA Medical Countermeasure (MCM) Emergency Communication Expert Working Group and is Principle Investigator of the EU-funded (EBODAC) project on the deployment, acceptance and compliance of an Ebola vaccine trial in Sierra Leone.

Helen Donovan

Helen Donovan

Professional Lead, Public Health Nursing, Royal College of Nursing

Speaker's biography

Helen is the Professional Lead for public health nursing at the Royal College of Nursing supporting and promoting the importance of public health across nursing and midwifery.

 

Helen has had a varied career across general nursing, midwifery, practice nursing, health visiting and specialist health protection. She has experience of working in public health teams within the NHS and in a local authority and has led various health protection public health priorities and projects. Helen is the Chair of the Self-Care forum a national charity working across health and wider organisations to further the reach of self-care and embed it into everyday life.

 

Helen has a special interest and expertise in vaccination and immunisation, she has an honorary senior lecturer position at the University of Hertfordshire.

 

Twitter: @HelenDon_RCN

Agenda

View the programme 20 February 2020

Registration, tea and coffee
Welcome address

Professor Sir Simon Wessely, President, Royal Society of Medicine

Session 1: Context and public policy

Chair: Professor Sir Simon Wessely, President, Royal Society of Medicine

Why are vaccination rates falling?
Dr Heidi Larson, Director of The Vaccine Confidence Project, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
The public health view

Dr Mary Ramsay, Head of Immunisations, Public Health England

Perspective from the local level

Dr Gary Marlowe, Clinical Vice Chair, City and Hackney Clinical Commissioning Group 

Panel discussion
Tea and coffee break

Session 2: What are the key frontline issues?

Chair: Dr Ellie Cannon, NHS General Practitioner, Mail on Sunday Columnist

A nursing role – what works in practice, challenges and solutions?

Helen Donovan, Professional Lead, Public Health Nursing, Royal College of Nursing

Talking with parents about vaccines

Professor Helen Bedford, Professor of Children’s Health, Population, Policy and Practice Department, University College London Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health

Utilising the general practice consultation

Dr Carmel Sher, General Practitioner, Postgraduate General Practitioner Trainer and Appraiser

Panel discussion
Tea and coffee break

Session 3: Panel discussion and public engagement

Chair: Professor Sir Simon Wessely, President, Royal Society of Medicine

What needs to happen now?

A panel discussion and audience engagement forum on how to address falling vaccination rates, both on a micro-level for front line staff, and on a macro-level in terms of public health strategies. 

Mark Honigsbaum, Lecturer and Medical historian, City University of London

Dr Heidi Larson, Director, The Vaccine Confidence Project, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Dr Jonathan Kennedy, Senior lecturer in global public health, Queen Mary University of London

Closing address

Professor Sir Simon Wessely, President, Royal Society of Medicine

Drinks reception
End of drinks reception

Location

Royal Society of Medicine, 1 Wimpole St, Marylebone, London, W1G 0AE, United Kingdom

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