Day 2 Meet-the-Expert

Title Options for the prevention and treatment of COVID-19
Details Date: November 12, 2021
Time: 8:15 – 9:15 am (SGT)
Synopsis COVID-19 has had an unprecedented impact on people and societies and the impacts will continue to be felt for some time to come. The rapid development of introduction of vaccines have contributed to an enormous reduction in the morbidity and mortality associated with the pandemic, but yet there are still many challenges to overcome, and new possibilities for prevention to consider. This panel session brings together leading experts to discuss the most relevant topics of the day relating to the prevention and treatment of COVID-19.
Objectives Understand the successes and challenges associated with protecting the world against COVID-19 disease.
Schedule 9:00-9:05 (5mins) Welcome and Introductions
9:05-9:45 (40mins) Panel discussion
9:45-10:00 (15mins) Q&A
Faculty Dr. Nakorn Premsri, Thailand

Dr Nakorn Premsri is the Director of National Vaccine Institute (NVI) and a key Member of the National Vaccine Committee in Thailand.

He has been a past Director of the Bureau of Epidemiology, within the Department of Disease Control, Ministry of Public Health, Thailand. He has also been a past Director of the Principal Recipient Office to the Global Fund and a past Director of the HIV Vaccine Trial Office in Thailand.

Dr Nan-Chang Chiu, Taiwan

Dr. Nan-Chang Chiu is currently serving as associate professor of the Department of Pediatrics at the Department of Medicine, Mackay Medical College, and is attending physician at the Department of Pediatrics, Mackay Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Chiu serves as the chair of the Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), Center for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan, the chair of Pediatric Infectious Disease Society of Taiwan (PIDST). He is also the convener of the Northern Taiwan Enterovirus Advisory Committee, the Director of Taiwan Child Neurology and the Medical Commissioner of MacKay Children’s Hospital.

Dr Erlina Burhan, Indonesia

Dr Burhan is a pulmonary specialist from the Division of Infection, Department of Pulmonology and Respiratory Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Indonesia and practices at Persahabatan Hospital, Jakarta.

Dr Burhan is active in the professional organization of the Indonesian Doctors Association (IDI) and expert groups and is involved in government programs. Previously, she served as Chair of the Indonesian Lung Doctors Association (PDPI) Jakarta Branch for the 2017–2020 period and the 2015–2017 period.

Dr Barnaby Young, Singapore

Dr Barnaby Young is an Infectious Diseases consultant at National Centre for Infectious Diseases (NCID). He is head of the Singapore Clinical Infectious Diseases Research Network (SCRN) and co-ordinates clinical studies in collaboration with public hospitals and polyclinics in Singapore.

His research interests include respiratory viruses, immunology and vaccines; and he has received various notable research awards and grants such as the NMRC COVID-19 Research Fund for “ACTIV-3: Therapeutics for Inpatients with COVID-19”.

Title The development and clinical validation of MiRXES Fortitude RT-PCR test kit for COVID-19 pandemic in Singapore and Philippines
Details Date: 12 November 2021
Time: 0815 – 0915 hrs
Synopsis The COVID-19 pandemic is a global crisis with wide-reaching health, social, and economic impact. Since the beginning of the pandemic, the global scientific community has responded rapidly to the crisis by developing and deploying innovations in testing, treatment, and vaccination. However, challenges in clinical validation and deployment of such innovations in resource-limited settings have resulted in some communities unable to benefit fully.

In this talk, our distinguished speakers will highlight the successes and challenges of rapidly developing the MiRXES Fortitude 2.1 COVID-19 RT-PCR test and its subsequent clinical validation in resource limited settings so that more can benefit fully from accurate and accessible testing.

The Fortitude test kit is Singapore’s first authorized COVID-19 RT-PCR test and has been mass produced since February 2020 by MiRXES, a Singapore-headquartered biotechnology company focusing on improving and saving lives with RNA-powered disease early detection tests. Over 8 million Fortitude tests have been deployed to over 45 countries globally since the start of the pandemic.

Objectives Learn from the experiences of two distinguished experts in the rapid development and clinical validation of a diagnostic test to fight the COVID-19 pandemic in Southeast Asia.
Schedule Each speaker will take approximately 20 mins for their talk.

Adjunct Associate Professor Timothy Mark Sebastian Barkham
Senior Consultant
Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore
Go! Developing Fortitude v2.1, an RT-PCR test for SARS-CoV-2
Dr Barkham studied medicine at St. Thomas’ Hospital, London, where he then specialised as a Clinical Microbiologist. He worked at the Hammersmith Hospitals before moving, in 1999, to Tan Tock Seng Hospital, Singapore, where he enjoys a mix of clinical medicine, research, and outbreak investigation. He has a teaching appointment at the National University of Singapore.

Prof. Pia Marie S.P. Albano
University of Santo Tomas, Philippines
Challenges and Strategies for Conducting Clinical Validation of MiRXES Fortitude Kit 2.1 COVID-19 RT-PCR Test: Experiences from Resource Limited Settings
Pia Marie Albano, Ph.D. is currently a faculty member and a research fellow at the University of Santo Tomas (UST) College of Science in Manila, Philippines. Dr. Albano is a certified clinical laboratory scientist by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) and the American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP). She serves as member of the Advisory Board of the UST Hospital’s Biobanking Facility, UST Institutional Biosafety Committee, Medical Technology Specialty Board of the Philippine Association of Medical Technologists (PAMET), and International Federation of Biomedical Laboratory Science (IFBLS) Scientific Network of Experts, primarily in the discipline of Microbiology.