More Top Stories

Editor's Pick

TB cases detected

1 June 2024


Alleged rapist in remand

27 April 2024

Rugby league

Moana target 2025 World Cup

11 November 2022

23rd Health Conference focuses on oral health

Monday 8 July 2024 | Written by Losirene Lacanivalu | Published in Health, National


23rd Health Conference  focuses on oral health
Secretary of Health Bob Williams. Photo: Supplied/22042113

About 100 people are expected to attend the 23rd Cook Islands Annual Health Conference in Rarotonga this week. The conference to be held from July 10-12 will focus on oral health with the theme “My Health My Life- Connecting mouth to body”.

Te Marae Ora (TMO) health secretary Bob Williams said during the conference, Dr Saia Ma'u Piukala, the first Pacific Islander to hold the position of the World Health Organization (WHO) Regional Director for Western Pacific, will accompany Health Minister Rose Toki-Brown to Aitutaki to open and hand over the new oxygen plant.

Williams said the Regional Director will also visit Avarua School, one of the Healthy Schools, the hospital and make a courtesy call to the Deputy Prime Minister and the Kaumaiti Nui at the House of Ariki.

He said some key documents will also be launched during the conference. They are the WHO STEPS Survey Report 2022, Dietary Food Based Guidelines 2024, Physical Activity Guidelines 2024 and the Cook Islands National Pandemic Preparedness Plan 2024.

Williams said the development of these documents was supported by the WHO, and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) supported the Dietary Guidelines.

“About 100 people expected to attend, majority from local, TMO staff and local partners.

“There are international guests from within the oral health professional bodies and FNU (Fiji National University) since the focus of the health conference for this year is on oral health.

“Sixteen students and five teachers will attend the conference kindly supported by UNICEF, Air Rarotonga and CITC.”

The conference also aims to address non-communicable diseases (NCD) and workforce.

On Friday, July 12, a Health Expo Day will be held, open to the general public, where over 1000 students are expected to attend.

Williams says about 20 booths will be set up with significant focus on all areas of health services.

The Expo is planned to generate interest amongst students in Year 11 to Year 13 for career pathways in health “as we strive in strengthening and growing our local workforce”, he adds.

The official opening will be held on July 10 at 8am at the National Auditorium, the conference venue.