ACTRIMS 2021 Conference Review

The Americas Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ACTRIMS) forum was held virtually in February this year. The Neurology Research Review have selected and reviewed 10 presentations.

Highlights in this review include:

  • Low sun exposure is a risk factor for paediatric-onset MS
  • Employment-related outcomes in Australian patients with MS
  • COVID-19 outcomes and risks in people with MS

Download the full review here: ACTRIMS_2021_Conference_Review.

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Julia Howell

Trustee

Julia is a qualified nurse and midwife, with a varied career including specialising in eating disorders, primary healthcare, and management.    

Julia, in partnership with a GP, set up an outpatient clinical trials unit (Southern Clinical Trials). Under her leadership this grew into a network of 6 sites across NZ. This network merged with another one in 2021 to form PCRN, NZ’s largest clinical trials network. Julia is currently working as joint COO for PCRN.

Julia’s daughter was diagnosed with MS aged 14 and she has been intimately involved with her management over the years.

 

Rachael Douglas

Trustee

Rachael is an experienced senior manager and is currently General Manager at the Arbitrators’ and Mediators’ Institute of New Zealand, she is responsible for developing and implementing policies, standards, and best practices for the dispute resolution sector, as well as ensuring the financial sustainability and enhancing the quality and efficiency of the services and programs offered by the organisation.

Rachael is also the Director of Douglas Consultants and for the past six and a half years has used her extensive project and change management experience to provide strategic insights and solutions for various business problems. She has successfully delivered projects and initiatives for staff management, cost reduction, customer experience, process improvement, and business agility, working closely with key stakeholders and using data-driven analysis and decision-making.

Creating positive change and impact in the communities she serves is a passion, which is why she is a Trustee of the New Zealand Multiple Sclerosis Research Trust.

Jan Campbell

Trustee

Born in Ōtautahi Jan trained as a nurse in Christchurch, as a midwife in Winchester, UK and has a degree in philosophy with particular interest in healthcare and business ethics.

After working in the public health system in the UK and NZ, Jan joined Roche Pharmaceuticals based in Auckland in 1999. As a respected senior leader and Medical Director, she established a medical division over the ensuing 20 years responsible for significant investment in clinical trials in NZ, developing a top-class global medicine information service, compassionate medicine supply for kiwis in need, pharmacovigilance oversight and a team working closely with patients, specialists, MEDSAFE and PHARMAC to support the safe and appropriate use of Roche medicines.

As a retiree Jan has volunteered for Mercy Hospice in Auckland and the WBoP Museum in Katikati. Now living in Ōtepoti, Jan sits on both the MS Research Trust and MSNZ executive committees with a keen interest to ensure people with MS get a fair go in NZ.

Dr Elza Cloete

Trustee

Elza is a Neonatal Paediatrician at Christchurch Women’s Hospital. Originally from South Africa, she moved to New Zealand in 2006 and completed her specialist training in Auckland.

Subsequent to that she embarked on doctoral studies at the University of Auckland’s Liggins Institute and obtained a PhD investigating congenital heart disease in new-born babies.

Elza received the Vice-Chancellor’s award for best doctoral thesis for her research and is the author of several research publications. She moved to Christchurch in 2020 for a work opportunity in clinical practice.

Elza was diagnosed with MS in 2012 and brings a consumer perspective and research experience to the Trust.

Kate Russell - ONZM FFINZ

Trustee

Kate has a thirty year history of working in the community as an enabler, fundraiser, strategic advisor and change maker.

Former CEO of Cystic Fibrosis NZ and the Canterbury Medical Research Foundation, Kate has held many Board positions as well as membership on several government advisory boards such as Pharmac and The Paediatric Society.

Fellow of the Fundraising Institute of NZ, Kate has raised more than 30 million dollars for charity over her career and became an officer of the NZ Order of Merit in 2018 for services to health and governance.

Currently, Partnerships Manager with the ChCh City Council, Kate is a published author and mentors a number of young professionals through Business Mentors NZ and in her spare time, is a marriage celebrant

Dr Ernie Willoughby

Trustee

Dr Willoughby has been a consultant neurologist at Auckland City Hospital (1979 to 2021 – now retired, emeritus) and clinical associate professor at Auckland University School of Medicine.

He directed the MS clinic at Auckland Hospital, has had a long association with the Auckland and NZ MS Societies, and is a member of the International Medical and Scientific Board of the MS International Federation.

Dr Brian Linehan

Independent Trustee

Dr Brian Linehan is a retired pathologist who was previously Managing Director of Medlab Hamilton.

He is currently Chairman of the Tranmere group of investment companies and a Director of a number of other private companies. In 2014, he retired after 12 years on the Council of the University of Waikato where he was Pro-Chancellor.

He is a past Chairman of the New Zealand Medical Association, past Chairman of NZMA Ethics Committee, past President and Chairman of CMAAO (Combined Medical Associations of Asia and Oceania) and past Chairman of IANZ (International Accreditation NZ).

Brian was diagnosed with MS in 2007 but is still active and mobile.

Peter Wood - JP, BCom, AGNZ, ACIS, FNZTA

Treasurer

Peter gained his commerce degree at Victoria University of Wellington and has been practising as a Chartered Accountant initially in Wellington and then in Tauranga.

Peter was a respected and trusted advisor to many businesspeople.
He is now resident in Auckland and consultants to a limited number business clients.

He has also served his community through involvement with Jaycees, Lions and Rotary clubs and a number of charitable trusts.

Peter is currently the Treasurer of Multiple Sclerosis Auckland and a trustee of the Multiple Sclerosis Auckland Trust.
Peter is a Justice of the Peace and a member Governance New Zealand and is a Fellow of the NZ Trustees’ Association.

Malcolm Rickerby

Trustee

Malcolm is on the National Executive Committee for the Multiple Sclerosis Society of New Zealand. Malcolm is a Past-President both the National Society and the Multiple Sclerosis & Parkinson’s Society of Canterbury.

He is respected for his governance and support for staff in the drive to deliver the best medical outcomes and support for people with Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson’s as well as keeping them in their communities.

He is a Rotarian and in the forefront of delivering a programme to primary schools to reduce obesity and diabetics in children, called Healthy Heroes, in the 9970 District.

Malcolm has been Chairperson of a High School Board of Governors, secretary, treasurer of a local primary school committee, coached women’s cricket and was a member of Canterbury Women’s Cricket Council. He has also served as a vestryman and vicars warden in the Anglican Christchurch Diocese.

Neil Woodhams

Trustee

Neil is an independent health management consultant who has had an extensive career in health management as a senior manager or consultant to government, DHBs, primary care and community providers.

Neil is President of MS New Zealand and a trustee of the MS Auckland Region Trust. Neil was also President of MS Auckland until he stepped down from this role mid-2020 to concentrate on his national roles.

Neil’s wife was diagnosed with MS in 1994. One of his four sons was also diagnosed in 2010.

Neil strongly believes in the objectives of the NZ Multiple Sclerosis Research Trust and has advocated for the establishment of the Trust for over 10 years.

Sir William Gallagher

Trustee

Sir William is renowned as a motivational, pragmatic and hands-on businessman in and outside of New Zealand and has a reputation both as a dynamic leader and one of NZ’s most astute businessmen.

Still very involved in the daily operation, he maintains regular contact with customers in the 130 countries in which Gallagher products are sold spending up to 150 days a year on the road representing the company and its philosophies and emphasising the ethics and integrity of his professional and personal dealings.

His achievements have been officially recognised by a string of awards, the latest to mark his commitment to enterprise and leadership skills being his Knighthood in the 2010 New Year’s Honours List. He was also the 1996 winner of the prestigious Excellence in Communication Leadership award, the first time in its history that it had been awarded outside of North America. He also received an MBE in 1987 followed by a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (CNZM) in 1998.

Sir William Gallagher - KNZM, MBE. HonD

Patron

Sir William is renowned as a motivational, pragmatic and hands-on businessman in and outside of New Zealand and has a reputation both as a dynamic leader and one of NZ’s most astute businessmen.

Still very involved in the daily operation, he maintains regular contact with customers in the 130 countries in which Gallagher products are sold spending up to 150 days a year on the road representing the company and its philosophies and emphasising the ethics and integrity of his professional and personal dealings.

His achievements have been officially recognised by a string of awards, the latest to mark his commitment to enterprise and leadership skills being his Knighthood in the 2010 New Year’s Honours List. He was also the 1996 winner of the prestigious Excellence in Communication Leadership award, the first time in its history that it had been awarded outside of North America. He also received an MBE in 1987 followed by a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit (CNZM) in 1998.