The IEA regional meeting in Africa, including the fourth meeting of the African Epidemiology Association, was held in Lilongwe, Malawi, on 14-15 April 2016. The meeting was officially opened by the Secretary for Health Dr MacPhail Magwira and the keyenote address was given by the Minister of Gender Women and Social Welfare Hon. Dr Jean A. Kalilani, MP, in Malawi, who emphasised the key role of epidemiology for addressing public health problems in Africa. Presentations covered a wide range of topics including: the Ebola vaccine trial in Guinea, a trial of the management of TB in Malawi, the emergence of snake bites as a public health problem in Cameroon, recent evidence on the effect of breastfeeding on infant growth by South African HIV positive women, and several presentations on the growing relevance of non-communicable disease in Nigeria and Senegal.
Discussions during the meeting stressed the importance of capacity building in public health research in Africa, and that future meetings should be co-ordinated with other meetings of epidemiologists in the region and should encourage the participation of early career epidemiologists.