Title Adult pneumococcal vaccination in the era of COVID-19 and beyond
Details Date: 29 July 2022
Time: 1130 – 1230 (SGT)
Synopsis In adults, the risk of contracting pneumococcal disease increases with age and with the presence of chronic and immunocompromising conditions. Particularly, it has become undeniably important for the elderly and high-risk groups to be protected against serious and potentially fatal pneumococcal infections during the COVID-19 pandemic, due to the high pneumonia-related mortality reported in COVID-19 patients.

This symposium brings together leading experts in the field to discuss the value of pneumococcal vaccination in the era of COVID-10 and share current challenges and future perspectives in the clinical area.

Objectives Highlight the burden of adult pneumococcal disease and underscore the importance of pneumococcal vaccine as a vital component of primary health care, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic
Schedule  Time Description/Title Speakers
1130 – 1135 Welcome and introduction Dr Asok Kurup
1135 – 1155 Presentation: Pneumococcal disease prevention: Building on the success of vaccines Prof Charles Feldman
1155 – 1205 Q&A All
1205 – 1225 Expert discussion: Current challenges and future directions in pneumococcal vaccination strategies Prof Charles Feldman
Moderated by Dr Asok Kurup
1225 – 1230 Closing Dr Asok Kurup
Faculty Dr Asok Kurup, Singapore

Dr Asok Kurup is an adult infectious diseases consultant at infectious Diseases Care Pte Ltd, Mount Elizabeth Medical Centre and visiting consultant to the Department of Infectious Diseases, Singapore General Hospital

He was a former visiting consultant at the Communicable Disease Centre, Tan Tock Seng Hospital where he ran outpatient HIV clinics. He was also a member of the Specialist Training Committee (Infectious Diseases) and a former teaching faculty at the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine and Duke’s Graduate Medical School. He is the current chair of the Antibiotic Stewardship Committee of Parkway Hospitals and the Chapter of Infectious Diseases Physicians of the Academy of Medicine, Singapore since 2019. He is also the Chair of the Infection Control Committee of Mount Elizabeth Hospital and a member of Infection Control Association of Singapore (ICAS).

He has over 60 publications and 100 abstracts. Research Interests: Primary HIV infection, Community-acquired bacterial infections, particularly melioidosis and klebsiella septicaemia, invasive fungal infections, control of nosocomial Infections including novel strategies to control MRSA and multi-drug resistant gram-negative infections

Professor Charles Feldman, South Africa

 Charles Feldman is Distinguished Professor of Pulmonology at the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa. Professor Feldman received his undergraduate medical degree (MB BCh) from the University of the Witwatersrand. He also holds a PhD and DSc (senior doctorate) from the same University, both awarded on the basis of theses on the subject of community-acquired pneumonia. In 2022 he received an honorary doctorate (Doctor of Medicine (honoris causa)) from the University of Pretoria for his work on respiratory infections and particularly pneumococcal infections.

Professor Feldman is a Fellow of the College of Physicians (SA) and the Royal College of Physicians (UK) and is registered as a subspecialist in Pulmonology. In 1988/89 he was Research Fellow and Honorary Senior Visiting Colleague, Host Defence Unit, Department of Thoracic Medicine, National Heart and Lung Institute, and Royal Brompton Hospital, London, United Kingdom.

Professor Feldman is an active member of a number of national and international societies. His research interest is translational and is in the field of community-acquired pneumonia, particularly pneumococcal pneumonia and especially in the setting of HIV infection. He has a keen interest in adult pneumococcal vaccination. In addition to being part of large international clinical collaborations recruiting patients with community-acquired pneumonia, he has also contributed to basic research studies, investigating the effects of various pneumococcal virulence factors and the effects of antibiotics and exposure to cigarette smoke condensate on pneumococcal growth, expression of virulence factors and pneumococcal genetics. He has more than 380 publications overall.

Title Environmental Surveillance to Inform Risk Assessment and Mitigation of Public Health Threats
Details Date: 29 July 2022, Saturday
Time: 0800 – 0845
Synopsis TBA
Objectives TBA
Schedule TBA
Faculty Dr Judith Wong Chui Ching

Dr Wong is a Director at the Environmental Health Institute, National Environment Agency, where she oversees the Microbiology and Molecular Epidemiology Division. She was integral in setting-up the National Wastewater-Based Epidemiology Programme in Singapore. Under her leadership, the programme expanded from a research initiative to a national surveillance programme spanning across more than 400 locations countrywide. She is involved in developing environmental cleaning guidelines and technical advisories, as well as other environmental surveillance efforts to support COVID-19-related responses. Her research interests also include One-Health antimicrobial resistance surveillance, and research on vector-borne and environmentally transmitted pathogens.

Dr Wong received her PhD in Biological Sciences from the National University of Singapore and has professional experience in clinical diagnostics, quality assurance, field operations, and multi-disciplinary research with focus on microbiology.