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Keynotes & Chairs

John Wynn-Jones

John Wynn-Jones believes that his 35 years as a rural family doctor in the UK is his most important achievement. He entered rural practice with enthusiasm when rural was seen as a backwater with no future. He established a local medical society and an annual UK Rural Doctors Conference in Wales that provided CPD for rural GPs across the country. In 1997 he founded the UK Institute of Rural Health and EURIPA (the European Rural and Isolated Practitioners Association) These two bodies have had a significant impact on rural health and rural practice in the UK and Europe. He also helped found the Welsh Rural Postgraduate Unit and the Rural Forum of the Royal College of GPs. He has also held senior posts at the University of Wales Postgraduate School. He is now semi-retired as a clinician but spends his time divided between his role as a senior lecturer in Rural and Global Health at Keele University, as Chair of the Wonca Working Party on Rural Practice and spending time with his family.

Claudio Colosio

Medical Doctor, Ph.D, professor of Occupational Health at the Department of Health Sciences of the University of Milan, and Coordinator of the International Centre for Rural Health of the San Paolo Hospital of Milano (WHO Collaborating Centre). Member of National and International expert groups on Pesticides, Agriculture and general Practice. Secretary of the Scientific Committee on Agriculture” of the International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH) and of the International Advisory Board of EURIPA. Involved in several national and international projects on Occupational Health and Safety and Agriculture, rural health and Primary Health Care.

Swen Malte John

Swen Malte J O H N, MD, Ph.D., Consultant Dermatologist Professor and Chairman, Dept. of Dermatology, Environmental Medicine, Health Theory, University of Osnabrueck, Germany.Director “Institute for Interdisciplinary Dermatological Prevention and Rehabilitation (iDerm)” and “Lower Saxonian Institute for Occupational Dermatology”. Chair ICOH Scientific Committee "Occupational and Environmental Dermatoses" (SC-OED) and EU Horizon2020 COST Action "Development and Implementation of European Standards on Prevention of Occupational Skin Diseases StanDerm)". Research focus on occupational dermatology and allergology, including the implementation and scientific evaluation of evidence-based interdisciplinary approaches to the prevention of occupational skin diseases with an emphasis on workers’ education strategies (“Osnabrueck model”).

Ivan Dimov Ivanov

Dr Ivan Dimov Ivanov coordinates WHO global action on workers’ health and leads current projects on strengthening the performance of health systems in protecting and promoting the health of workers, including scaling up workers’ health coverage, development of national plans and profiles on workers’ health and the training of primary care providers. He carried out projects on the delivery of essential interventions for workers’ health at the primary care level, occupational diseases, sound management of industrial carcinogens, smoke-free workplaces. Recently, Dr Ivanov was involved in addressing the occupational health and safety challenges in the outbreak of Ebola virus disease in West Africa. Dr Ivanov started working at the WHO in 2000, first in the Regional Office for Europe as manager of the programmes on environmental health policies and occupational health. In 2005, he was transferred to WHO Headquarters where he facilitated the development of the Global Plan of Action on Workers’ Health and currently coordinates its implementation. Prior to joining WHO, Dr Ivanov was deputy chief medical officer and senior adviser in occupational health at the Ministry of Health of his native country, Bulgaria. He is a medical doctor, specialist in occupational health, studied health administration in the Ministry of Welfare, Japan. Dr Ivanov obtained his PhD in sociology of health and environment from Michigan State University, USA, where he has faculty appointment as adjunct professor at the Institute of International Health.

Paolo Carrer

Medical Doctor, Ph.D, professor of Occupational Medicine at the Department of Biological and Clinical Sciences “L. Sacco”, University of Milan, and Director of the Occupational Health Unit of “Luigi Sacco” Hospital of Milan. Member of expert groups on Indoor Air Quality of WHO, European Union and Italian Ministry of Health. Chair of the Scientific Committee on “Indoor Air Quality and Health” of the International Commission on Occupational Health (ICOH). Involved in several national and international projects on Occupational and environmental toxicology and on Indoor and outdoor air quality and related health effects.

Kurt Straif

Dr Straif is Head of the IARC Monographs of the IARC, WHO, Lyon, France. His research focuses on environmental risk factors for cancer. He serves on national and international committees on primary and secondary prevention of cancer. He has a long record of teaching medicine and epidemiology and is Scientific Director of the IARC International Summer School on Cancer Epidemiology. He studied medicine and philosophy (theory of science) at the Universities of Liège, Heidelberg and Bonn. He is Board-certified in Internal Medicine and Occupational, Environmental and Social Medicine. He received his MPH and PhD in Epidemiology from the University of California.

José Manuel López Abuin

General Practitioner since 1980, has worked since then in the Public Primary Health Care System of Galicia, a northwestern Spanish region near that with only 2.5 million inhabitants has the half number of the inhabited villages in the whole Spanish nation. Besides his clinical activity, he became soon involved as leader in several Spanish Rural Family Medicine networks until becoming president of the European Rural and Isolated Practitioners Association (EURIPA) in the year 2012. He is also involved in several rural medicine journals, regional, national and international conferences and meetings, research, working groups and continuing medical education. His activities beyond Europe stand as Executive Committee member of the WONCA Working Party on Rural Medicine and as leader of the South American Rural Health Forum

Susan Brumby

Susan Brumby RN, RM, Dip. Farm M’Ment, MHM, PhD Susan began her career as a registered nurse and midwife working in rural Australia and has held executive positions in health services since 1998. She has been actively involved in agriculture, running the family beef and wool property for twelve years. These two different career paths provided unique insight into the health, wellbeing and safety of farm men and women and the barriers that prevent them enjoying the same health outcomes as other populations. Combining these two passions, (health and agriculture) Sue led an innovative and multi-award winning community program called Sustainable Farm FamiliesTM, which has been delivered across Australia and recently piloted internationally. As the founding Director of the National Centre for Farmer Health she leads the Graduate Certificate in Agricultural Health and Medicine, numerous research grants and provides services direct to farm men and women. Sue has been recognised for her contribution to rural health and has presented and published nationally and internationally on farmer health and community involvement.

Ashok Patil

Dr. Ashok Patil, President of International Association of Rural Health and Medicine, since 2000 holds a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from University of Pune, India, Program for Development Managers from Asian Institute of Management, Philippines, and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D) from World University, USA. Dr. Ashok Patil has nearly 35 years experience in the field of education and research in rural health, rural development, biotechnology, industrial development, financial management, networking of NGOs, institutional promotion in India and abroad. He is instrumental in promoting nearly 50 educational, health and research organizations of international standard both in rural and urban India. He has been actively associated with International Association of Rural Health & Medicine (IARM), which has regional chapters in Asia, Africa, Europe, North America, and national chapters in 35 countries, and served in different capacities as President Elect, Executive Bureau Member since 1988. He has been serving as President of International Association of Agricultural Medicine and Rural Health (IARM) since 2000. He has actively participated and chaired several international meetings, conferences, workshops organized by WHO (General Assembly and Special Task Force Meetings), Regional Offices of WHO meetings, ILO, FAO, IAAMRH, WONCA, NIES, Japan, the Network, Netherlands etc and delivered Key note addresses, guest lectures, and actively contributed in the proceedings and presented papers. Dr. Ashok Patil has been instrumental in organizing and hosting several international, and national conferences, workshops, special technical meetings on various issues including Rural Health, Woman and Child, Rural & Sustainable Development, Ecology & Environment, Biotechnology, Information Technology etc. He is presently serving as Executive Chairman of Pravara Rural Education Society, having 97 schools and Institutions with 40,000 students. He is also the Chairman of Dr.Vikhe Patil Foundation,Pune

Torben Sigsgaard

He did his PhD thesis in Respiratory epidemiology and toxicology at Aarhus University in 1993. Most research has been focused on respiratory health effects in relation to exposure to bioaerosols with a special emphasis on endotoxins and glucans but also other organic components like allergens and enzymes. He has targeted in his research span a wide variety with the common theme of organic bioaerosol exposure in Farming and Dairy through garbage handling and cotton mills. He has a long experience in research leadership nationally as well as internationally. He is also very active in international work on risk assessment via his work in the ERS, In ICOH and WHO.

Tanja Pekez Pavliško

Tanja Pekez Pavliško was born in 1961 in Travnik, Bosnia & Herzegovina. She graduated from medical school in 1985 at the University of Banja Luka. Since 1989 she begins her specialization which she does not finish due to the ensuing war. She then works for many years in pre-hospital emergency medicine up to 2007, when she began working as a general practitioner after finishing her residency. In the meantime she finished her postgraduate studies in clinical pharmacology, emergency medicine and general practice. She finished her PhD studies but at this time has not yet finished her PhD thesis. Throughout her medical career she actively participates in local and international conferences in emergency medicine and general practice. She led International Trauma Life Support Courses in Croatia for four years. She published two books for laymen in emergency care, as well as a self-help book for parents for most common diseases in children. She published chapters in several medical books. Since 2012. she is a member of Executive EURIP-aa, and from 2012 co-chair of WONCA Working Party of Rural Practice. She organized KoHOM congresses with over 700 participants. Since June she is the President Interim of EURIPA. Her special interests include palliative care, agricultural occupational health and emergency medicine. He has a long experience in research leadership nationally as well as internationally. He is also very active in international work on risk assessment via his work in the ERS, In ICOH and WHO.

Sergio Iavicoli

He graduated in Medicine and Surgery at University of Rome “Sapienza” cum laude. He got his PhD degree in Occupational Health and Industrial Toxicology. Research Fellow at University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health. Currently he is Director of the Department of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, Epidemiology and Hygiene of the Italian Workers’ Compensation Authority (INAIL) - World Health Organization Collaborating Centre (WHO CC). Also he is ICOH Secretary General and President of the European Academy of Occupational Health Psychology (EAOHP). He is Editorial Board of several scientific journals and Member of different national/international Committees including WHO Global Advisory Committee in Occupational Health. Scientific coordinator of over 40 national and international research programmes and author of over 600 scientific publications in Occupational Health, including more than 100 publications in impacted journals. Since 2014, national scientific qualification as full professor in SSD Med44/Occupational Medicine sector.

Shengli Niu

Dr. Shengli Niu was trained in medicine and specialized in occupational health. He is currently working as a team leader and senior specialist in occupational health at the Labour Administration, Labour Inspection and OSH Branch of the International Labour Office in Geneva, Switzerland. He has worked in the fields of occupational health, radiation protection of workers and ergonomics for about 30 years. He had worked for the Ministry of Health of the People’s Republic of China for eight years and for the World Health Organization for two years at its Beijing Office before he joined the ILO in 1994. He is responsible for ILO’s activities in the field of occupational health and safety including occupational health services, health surveillance of workers, identification and recognition of occupational diseases, ergonomics, occupational radiation protection and international cooperation on occupational health. Dr. Niu has led a number of international efforts in developing global policies on occupational safety and health including the revision of the ILO’s international list of occupational diseases and the development of international practical guidelines on ergonomics at the workplace. He has been the ILO focal point on radiation protection since 1994. He also serves as a member or representative of the ILO at several international expert/standards committees relevant to safety, health and radiation protection. He is a member of the International Technical Advisory Group (ITAG) on the IAEA Report on the Fukushima Daiichi accident.

Peter Lundqvist

Peter Lundqvist has a PhD and work as a Professor in Work Science and as Head of the Department for Work Science, Business Economics and Environmental Psychology at the Swedish University University of Agricultural Sciences at Alnarp in the very south of Sweden. He grow up on a farm and his main research interests are in injury prevention, ergonomics and leadership. He is engaged in a number of international organizations such as The International Association of Rural Health and Medicine (Executive Board), International Section of the ISSA on Prevention of Occupational Risks in Agriculture (Advisory Board), The International Ergonomics Association (Vice Chair & Member of the Technical Committee Agriculture) and the International Society for Agricultural Safety and Health (Board of Directors). He is also Associate Editor of the Journal of AgroMedicine and the Journal of Agricultural Safety and Health.