Ending AIDS & Global Pandemics
 

10th SA AIDS CONFERENCE CHAIR

Dr Gloria Maimela, Director: Health Programmes

B-Nursing (Wits); MBBCH (Wits); Dip HIV Man (CMSA); MBA (GIBS)

Dr Gloria Maimela is the Director of Health Programmes at Wits RHI. She is a Medical Doctor with extensive experience in paediatric and adult TB management and HIV treatment and prevention. Dr Maimela holds a Bachelor of Nursing degree, a Bachelor of Medicine and Surgery, a Master’s in Business Administration (MBA) and a Diploma in HIV Management. 

Dr Maimela provides strategic oversight and technical direction in the implementation of the following PEPFAR funded programs: Care and Treatment in Tshwane District (funded through the Centre of Disease Control agency), Accelerating Program Achievements to Control the Epidemic (APACE) in Lejweleputswa, Free State and the Key Populations (KP) program in multiple districts in SA. The latter two programs are funded through USAID. The key objective of these programs is to reach HIV epidemic control in South Africa by 2030, through provision of HIV prevention, care and treatment services to vulnerable and key populations.

Dr Maimela leads a team of over 1000 Wits RHI staff members across these programs. Through her leadership, the programs are being recognised as some of the best performing in the country. Dr Maimela has been invited as a speaker at local and international conferences and has presented numerous abstracts and posters. Most recently, she participated as a plenary speaker at the International AIDS Society (IAS) 2019 conference in Mexico City. She is a published author and is now embarking on an Implementation Science PhD.

Dr Maimela has been selected to chair the SAAIDS conference at the Durban International Convention Centre in 2021.


10th SA AIDS CONFERENCE COMMITTEE


Track 1: Basic and Clinical Science: HIV including COVID 



Chair: Professor Francois Venter

Co-Chair: Dr Lenine Liebenberg

Prof Francois Venter heads Ezintsha, a sub-syndicate of the Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg. He leads multiple antiretroviral treatment optimisation studies, and has an active interest in public sector access to HIV services. He is currently working on new first and second line antiretroviral options, patient linkage to care interventions, and HIV self-testing projects. He has led large PEPFAR-funded HIV programmes in South Africa, including one that focuses on truckers and sex workers. He has been represented on South African and regional HIV guidelines for over a decade, having done almost all his training within South Africa. He is an advisor to the South African government, ACTG, Southern African HIV Clinicians Society, UNAIDS and WHO. He has been involved in several human rights cases involving HIV within the Southern African region, and has an active interest in medical ethics.

Dr Lenine Liebenberg is a Scientist at the Centre for the AIDS Programme of Research in South Africa (CAPRISA) in the Mucosal Immunology Laboratory, an honorary Senior Lecturer at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, and a Future Leaders – African Independent Researcher (FLAIR) Fellow. Dr Liebenberg’s combined training in medical virology, microbiology, genetics, and immunology direct the scope of her research in understanding immune responses at the human genital mucosa. She has documented methods to improve genital cell isolation from men and women, methods to facilitate genital cellular immune responses in multicentre studies, and has characterised genital and systemic immune factors that facilitate HIV infection, viral shedding and HIV transmission.


Track 2: Epidemiology and Public Health



Chair: Associate Professor Mary-Ann Davies

Co-Chair: Dr Sophie Pascoe

Prof Mary-Ann Davies is a Public Health Medicine Specialist and Paediatric Clinical Epidemiologist at the University of Cape Town, where she is Director of the Centre for Infectious Disease Epidemiology and Research (CIDER). She convenes the MPH module on Infectious Disease Epidemiology. She is joint Principal Investigator of IeDEA Southern Africa, together with Matthias Egger from the University of Bern in Switzerland. Here major research interests are paediatric HIV treatment and prevention, especially HIV cohort research to address key policy and implementation questions.

Dr Sophie Pascoe is an Epidemiologist and Principal Researcher at the Health Economics and Epidemiology Research Office (HE 2RO) in Johannesburg. She holds a Masters and Doctorate degree in Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM). Sophie has over 15yrs experience working in the region where her work has focussed on HIV and sexual reproductive health research and the implementation of randomised control trials as well as operational research evaluating health systems strengthening interventions. Currently her research focuses on linkage to care, treatment adherence and retention in care among people living with HIV and the implementation of differentiated models of care. She is also Co-Director of the Indlela project building capacity in behavioural economics and applying behavioural insights for better health.

 

 

Track 3: Implementation Science and Best Practices



Chair: Professor Saiqa Mullick

Co-Chair: Professor Harry Hausler

Professor Saiqa Mullick, MBBCh MSc MPH PhD is Director of Implementation Science at Wits RHI. She has a medical degree with a PhD in Infectious Disease Epidemiology from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. She currently oversees a large portfolio of projects addressing introduction of innovative approaches and technologies for HIV prevention and Sexual and Reproductive Health with a focus on adolescent girls and young women.

She has supported oral PrEP introduction in South Africa and currently serves as principal investigator on a number of studies evaluating integrated service delivery approaches for young women. For the last five years she served as Deputy Director on the OPTIONS Consortium, a USAID-funded project focused on research and access for HIV prevention for women providing co-leadership and strategic direction for this consortium of nine international organizations working primarily in three countries (South Africa, Kenya, and Zimbabwe).

She serves on a number of national and international technical expert committees including the National PrEP technical working group, the IAPAC Fast Track Cities Implementation Science Fund Expert Advisory Committee and the WHO STI Guidelines Development Group. She has been an invited speaker at multiple international conferences on HIV prevention, integrated services, adolescent health and sexually transmitted infections and an invited member of various conference scientific committees.

Prof Harry Hausler is the Chief Executive Officer of the non-governmental  organisation TB/HIV Care Association, he has been the principal investigator of a number of research projects: two CDC-PEPFAR co-operative agreements on comprehensive HIV and TB prevention in the general population (in six districts) and among sex workers (in Cape Metro and Ethekwini); a Stop TB Partnership TB REACH project in Sisonke district; and a Global Fund project to increase HIV and TB case finding and treatment in correctional facilities in the Western Cape.


Track 4: Community and Civil Society engagement



Chair: Ms Sibongile Tshabalala

Co-Chair: Mr Shaun Shelley

Sibongile Tshabalala is the National Chairperson of the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC). She was diagnosed with HIV in 2000. Sibongile is not only a positive inspiration for people living with HIV but a social justice activist on health and rights issues affecting women and the poor.  In 2009, she became a member of the TAC Vosloorus branch in the Gauteng province of South Africa and in 2012 she was elected as Provincial Chairperson of TAC Gauteng. In 2015 she was co-opted as a National Deputy General Secretary, 2017 August she was elected as the National Chairperson of Treatment Action Campaign. Her leadership and voice has helped raise awareness at local and international platforms including the International AIDS Society Conference. She is an honorary fellow at Steve Biko Centre for Bioethics

 

Shaun Shelly is dedicated to the development of rights and evidence-based drug policy. Shaun is the Drug Policy Lead at TB HIV Care, where he founded the South African Drug Policy Week. He has a research post at the University of Pretoria, Department of Family Medicine. Shaun is a founding member and Chair of SANPUD, serves on the Strategic Board of the Love Alliance and is Co-Chair of the SANAC Technical Working Group on People Who Use Drugs. He is a former Deputy Secretary of the United Nations VNGO Committee on Narcotic Drugs and holds positions on several advisory boards, locally and internationally. He brings academic, programmatic, research, clinical and lived experience together into a 360 degree-view of the complex issues that inform our understanding and response to the use of certain drugs, and the people that use them.


Track 5: Policy and Society




Chair: Professor Gesine Meyer-Rath

Co-Chair: Professor Relebohile Moletsane

Co-Chair: Dr Thato Chidarikire

Prof. Gesine Meyer-Rath, MD, PhD, is a medical doctor and health economist working on the economics of infectious disease interventions in low- and middle-income settings. She is an Associate Professor at the Department for Global Health, Boston University, US, and lives in Johannesburg where she works at the Health Economics and Epidemiology Research Office (HE 2RO), a collaboration between Boston University and the University of the Witwatersrand. Her focus lies on modeling methods for economic evaluation and translating research into recommendations for public policy. While her past work involved mostly economic analyses of HIV treatment and prevention interventions, she has most recently modelled the cost and budget impact of Covid-19 related interventions as part of the National Covid-19 Modelling Consortium.  

 

As the J.L. Dube Chair in Rural Education at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, Professor Moletsane has extensive experience in educational development, curriculum studies, and other issues at the intersection of gender and education. She acted as the director of the Gender and Development Unit at the Human Sciences Research Council until 2010, and was formerly a senior lecturer at the University of Natal. The author of several articles and book chapters, her publications have concentrated on the applicability of digital technologies to quality education, developmental strategies, and poverty alleviation within rural contexts

Dr Thato Chidarikire is the Director of HIV Prevention Programmes in the National Department of Health, South Africa. Her portfolio includes HIV testing services (HTS) and linkage to care, HIV self-screening (HIVSS), Index testing, male and female condoms, management of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), PEP and PreP, prevention services for key populations, prevention services for youth, advocacy, communication and social mobilisation. She has more than 20 years’ experience in public health and more than 10 years’ experience in the HIV field including involvement in clinical trials, research and public health sector engagement. Dr Chidarikire has worked in policy development and implementation, guideline development, programme review, programme implementation, capacity building and quality assessment and improvement. She is co-chair of the WHO HTS guideline development group, the PEPAR PFIP Prevention work-stream and the national HIV Think Tank. She holds a PHD degree in Virology from the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg


Co-opted members



Ms Suzanne Johnson Mabaso

Dr Eula Mothibi

Ms Suzanne Johnson Mabaso is the Head of Cluster: Innovations at Foundation for Professional Development. She is the head of the Technical Assistance (TA) Cluster which has a focus on strengthening South African Government (SAG) capacity for leadership, management and delivery of health services in the district health system.

Dr Eula Mothibi is the Executive and Managing Director of Right to Care (RtC) International providing technical assistance Zambia, Malawi, Lesotho, Tanzania, Nigeria

She has some 27 years of executive and technical experience with interdisciplinary knowledge of clinical internal medicine and public health systems.

Dr Mothibi has made an impact in the areas of HIV, TB and prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT). 

Her leadership skills are evident in her ability to extend her knowledge to key areas of HIV medicine, public health systems and services. This knowledge has benefitted health systems across several African countries. Previously, Dr Mothibi was the chief operations Officer at Kheth’Impilo AIDS Free Living in the Western Cape.


Dira Sengwe BOD Representative


Dr Gustaaf Wolvaardt

Dr Gustaaf Wolvaardt is the Managing Director of FPD. Prior to being appointed at FPD he served the South African Medical Association as a Healthcare Executive. He is also a Fellow of the College of Physicians of South Africa and completed the Manchester Business School Advanced Management Programme in 1998. Dr Wolvaardt serves on the Board of Directors of the South African Institute for Health Care Managers, Dira Sengwe Conferences, Right to Care and Aids Accountability International. He has published a number of articles on international health and health management issues and advises a number of international clients on international health issues from time to time. In 2007 he was recognized a one of the 25 most influential South African healthcare leaders by the South African Institute of Health Care Managers.