The participants

Ms Virginia Arnold

Virginia (Gini) Arnold is part of the WHO mHealth secretariat for the new joint UN Initiative Be He@lthy Be Mobile. She also works in the WHO Tobacco Free Initiative team as the Project Officer for the Bloomberg Initiative to Reduce Tobacco Use. In this position she is responsible for external relations, global reporting and management of the Bloomberg Initiative.
She has worked at WHO since 2000. Her previous roles include being a Special Assistant for former WHO Director-General Jongwook Lee, developing UNITAID, and helping to establish the Stop TB Partnership. She also managed a new tuberculosis drug procurement.

Dr Eva Barijaona

Dr. Eva Ranivoharilanto, wife of Barijaona, is a dentist by training. After her doctorate in 1994 at the University of Mahajanga (Madagascar), she started in the public service by providing oral health care for children attending public primary school. She then obtained her master's
degree in public health in 2003 then her PhD in the same field and at the same university. In
the meantime, she has been responsible for prevention and communication within the Oral
Health Department and is currently Chief Dental Officer. Her mission is to contribute to the
improvement of oral health in Madagascar.

Dr Caren Bavaresco

Dr Caren Bavaresco is a dental surgeon within the Primary Health Care (PHC) in the Conceição Hospital Group and professor in the Post-Graduate Programme in Dentistry at the Lutheran University of Brazil (ULBRA). She is a specialist in Public Health for the Brazilian Association of Dentistry, with a Master's Degree and a Doctorate in Biochemistry from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul and a post-doctorate in epidemiology from the same university. She is currently studying a specialisation course in Digital Technologies applied to Education, as a distance learning course with ULBRA, and a Post-Doctorate in Dentistry with the University of São Paulo (USP), with an emphasis on e-learning.

Prof Raman Bedi

Chair of the WFPHA Oral Health Working Group.

Emeritus Professor King’s College London. Chairman of the Global Child Dental Fund.

Raman Bedi was Chief Dental Officer – England from October 2002 to October 2005. Some notable developments during this period include him leading the team which led to establishment, in law, the Health and Social Care Act (dental clauses) 2004, Water Act (Fluoridation) 2004 and the Section 60 (2005) order reforming the General Dental Council.

He was awarded a Doctor of Science by the University of Bristol (2003) for his contribution to dental research and a Doctor of Humane Letters (2010) by AT Still University (Arizona) for his contribution to the social sciences. He has published over 200 scientific papers Since 2012 he has chaired the World Federation of Public Health Associations oral health working group.

President of the British Society for Disability and Oral Health (2002), President of the Education Research Group (IADR) (2002–2004) and chair of the IADR Regional Development Programme Committee (2002–2004).

Prof David Conway

David Conway is Professor of Dental Public Health and Honorary Consultant in Public Health at the University of Glasgow and NHS National Services Scotland Information Services Division. For NHS Scotland, he is the dental public health lead for data, information, and eHealth, and is the joint Oral and Dental Specialty Group Lead for NHS Research Scotland. David's main research interests are in socioeconomic inequalities in heath and oral health, cancer epidemiology, evaluation of public health improvement interventions / policies (including development and evaluation of Childsmile), and global health. This work is undertaken via epidemiological studies, big data / data-linkage, community trials, and systematic reviews / meta-analyses.


Dr Bernard Decroix

He has been Director of the AOI since 1990. He works in the field of oral public health and consulting support in the planning of projects in the field of training, access to fluoride, infection control and access to care. He has background in program sustainability, experience sharing and networking between institutions, NGOs, ministries of health, companies and donors. He has worked on projects in French-speaking Africa, Haiti, France, Southeast Asia, Madagascar and contributed to the organization of a university degree with the University of Auvergne.


Dr Awa Gaye

Dr Awa Gaye has a State Doctorate in Dental Surgery; a Diploma in Community-Oriented Health Programs Management and a Master's Degree in Health Project Monitoring and Evaluation. Since 1994 she has been a clinician and head of the oral health service of the National University Hospital Center of Fann in Senegal. Since 2007 she has also taught and researched at the Alioune Diop University of Bambey in Senegal. From 2009-2014 she was Director of the Health and Sustainable Development Training and Research Unit. Since 2015 she has been head of the Bucco-Dental Health Division (DSBD) of the Ministry of Health and Social Action (MSAS) of Senegal.

Dr Nicolas Giraudeau

Nicolas Giraudeau gained his DDS from the University of Montpellier, France, in 2009 and completed an MSc at the university in the following year. In 2014 he successfully completed a PhD on legal considerations relating to teledentistry at the Faculty of Law and Political Science, University of Montpellier. Since 2010, Dr. Giraudeau has worked in the Odontology Service of University Hospital of Montpellier, in the Departments of Pediatric Odontology, Operative Dentistry and Public Health. Dr. Giraudeau is the secretary of the e-health Chaire of the University of Montpellier. He is also the treasurer of the IADR e-Oral Health Network. In January 2018, he was the Editor of a book entitled “e-Health Care in dentistry and Oral Medicine: a clinician’s guide” (Springer). In 2018, he worked with WHO as a consultant for 3 months especially on the topic of the mOralHealth Programme.

Prof O.P Kharbanda

Dr. Kharbanda is Director of WHO Collaborating Centre and National Centre of Excellence on Oral Health, Ministry of Health, Government of India. CDER is also Global Partner with Cochrane Oral Health Group Manchester, England. Besides his role as a CHIEF, a Postgraduate teacher, Clinician and Researcher,  Dr. Kharbanda has made a significant contribution to Oral Health in sensitising, convincing and ensuring it is given its due significance in health care by the government of India. The government of India has included dental health in the Prime Ministers flagship program on 125,000 wellness centres alongside programmes focuing on childhood (RBSK), maternal and child health and geriatric care. The interactive website and mobile app on oral health are likely to be released soon under E Dant Seva. He is responsible for streamlining the national oral cancer screening program for adults in India and is also Principal Investigator of India Cleft program by Indian Council of Medical Research. Dr. Kharbanda has published a Book, and 150+ manuscripts and book chapters. He has travelled widely and lectured at several forums.

Dr Line Kleinebreil

Line Kleinebreil graduated from Paris universities in medicine and also in mathematics and information technology. She works part time as a clinician specialising in diabetes and part time in the information technology department of Georges Pompidou European University Hospital (Paris). She has been active at European level in several European projects such as "Diabcare" and "Diabcard". She also developed webinars in various languages to utilize technology for the dissemination of educational material. She is president of the digital university "Université Numérique Francophone Mondiale" (UNFM) which delivers distant learning programmes for developing countries. Currently she is also a consultant for "Be He@lthy Be Mobile”, a WHO / ITU program using mobile phones to fight non-communicable diseases, with a special focus on mDiabetes in Senegal.

Dr Jason Ligot

Dr Jason Ligot is an international health communication specialist with experience working in health promotion, mental health, tobacco control, non-communicable diseases, newborn health, violence and injury prevention, and environmental health. He has undertaken projects and assignments in over 15 countries for local and international health organizations, national government agencies, non-government organizations, civil society, and educational institutions. These projects include convening high-level conferences, conducting workshops, and overseeing multi-country communication and advocacy campaigns. Dr Ligot holds degrees in psychology and medicine, graduating with distinction, and has edited or contributed to scientific articles and technical publications on health promotion, health literacy and communications.

Ms Briana Lucido

Briana Lucido is the Toolkits Officer for the World Health Organization (WHO) mHealth secretariat for Be He@lthy, Be Mobile, a joint UN initiative between WHO and the International Telecommunication Union.  In this position she is responsible for coordinating the development of the technical documents that provide standard operating procedures and guidance for countries developing and implementing mHealth programs. Previously, she worked at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention as a member of the Science Team for the Million Hearts initiative. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology from the University of Michigan and a Master of Public Health degree in Behavioral Sciences and Health Education from the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University.

Dr Rodrigo Mariño

Rodrigo Mariño is a Professor of Population Oral Health at the Melbourne Dental School, University of Melbourne, Australia. Rodrigo has a dental degree (University of Chile), an MPH (Minnesota) and a PhD (Melbourne). He has excellent research expertise in social epidemiology, dental workforce issues, public health, migrant health, information and communication technology, gerontology, and population oral health. Rodrigo has published more than 130 papers in scientific journals as well as several major reports and 35 book chapters. Rodrigo is currently president of the IADR's e-Oral Health Research Network and is a member of the editorial board of three international, peer-reviewed journals.

Mr Joshua Okello

Joshua Okello is passionate about using technology to bridge gaps, particularly in health service delivery in developing countries, with a bias for maternal and newborn health. He has built digital products for over six years and consulted for multinationals like United Nations Population Fund, Population Council/Duke University and Microsoft. Joshua has spoken or been a panelist or awardee at multiple events like World Health Summit, Oxford Africa Conference, World Health Students Symposium, We Day California, among others. In 2014, he was awarded The 2014 Future Africa Prize in Technology and a finalist at the Innovation Prize for Africa.

Dr Roland Petcu

Dr. Roland Petcu is a dentist, a PhD candidate in information systems and COO of e-DENTECH. After obtaining his Dental Degree from the Faculty of Dentistry in Romania and 5 years of experience in enterprise software systems, in 2011 he moved to France. In 2013 he earned his master’s degree in Management of Information Technology from IAE Montpellier School of Management. From 2014 during a 3-year PhD fellowship, he researched the organizational and information systems issues in the deployment of the e-DENT teledentistry project. Today he continues his work through action research studies on the generalization of the e-DENT system.

Dr Ave Põld

Ave Põld is a dentist who completed her training at the University of Tartu, Estonia in 2017. She is currently the President of the International Association of Dental Students. Ave also has a background in oral health and disease prevention as the Chairwoman of the Prophylaxis Committee of IADS. She has initiated and worked on several international prophylaxis campaigns in tight relation with other healthcare organizations. Ave is actively working with healthcare student associations such as IFMSA, IVSA and IPSF mostly regarding policy work and global campaigns. Her areas of interest include oral and global health, education and health workforce.

Mr Sameer Pujari

Sameer Pujari is part of the secretariat for the flagship WHO and ITU joint program on mHealth for Non-Communicable Diseases; Be He@lthy Be Mobile. Working at WHO since 2008, he has also provided technical advice and support to over 35 countries in the development of surveillance and management information systems. Prior to joining WHO, he worked with the US Government’s health agency helping various countries build informatics systems for immunization and vaccination programs in Asia, Europe and Africa. He started his career working with WHO’s National Polio Surveillance Project in India for 7 years, where he led the development and implementation of various information management systems for surveillance across the country.

Ms Laeticia Razafimamonjy

Laeticia Razafimamonjy has an MBA in Project Management and is the Coordinator of Projects for AOI Madagascar / COEF Ressources. She began her professional career in 2000 as a Rural Development Agent for an integrated development project in Madagascar. In 2001, she joined the consulting firm COEF Ressources specialized in organizational audit, human resources, project evaluation, socio-economic studies and communication, as a consultant. In 2003, she became Project Coordinator of COEF Ressources. As such, since 2015, she has been part of the management team of an oral health project run jointly by the AOI and the Madagascar Ministry of Public Health, and co-financed by AFD.

Dr Janneke Scheeman

Janneke Scheerman PhD works as a lecturer in the Department of Oral Hygiene at Inholland University Amsterdam since 2008. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Oral Hygiene and a Master’s degree in Health Sciences. Janneke recently finished her PhD research at the Academic Center for Dentistry Amsterdam (ACTA). Her PhD research was about the development and evaluation of a mobile app to promote good oral health behavior in adolescent patients (The “WitGebit” app). She also worked as a guest researcher at the Netherlands Organization for Applied Scientific Research (TNO). Her main research interests are mHealth, oral health behavior change and health promotion.

Dr Eli Schwarz

Dr. Eli Schwarz is Professor and Chair of the Department of Community Dentistry at the School of Dentistry, Oregon Health & Science University, USA.  Previously, he has held professional positions in Australia (Professor and Dean, Faculty of Dentistry, University of Sydney); in the USA (Executive Director of the American and International Associations for Dental Research (AADR/IADR)); in Hong Kong (Professor of Public Health Dentistry and Dean of Dentistry, University of Hong Kong), and in Denmark (Chief Dental Officer, National Board of Health, and Associate Professor, University of Copenhagen). Professor Schwarz has a D.D.S. and a Ph.D. from University of Copenhagen, Denmark, and an M.P.H. (Cum Laude) from the University of Jerusalem.  He is a Founding Fellow of the HK Academy of Medicine and a Fellow in the specialty of Community Dentistry in the HK College of Dental Surgeons. He is also a Fellow of the American College of Dentists and of the Royal Australasian College of Dental Surgeons. In 1987, he was conferred the Royal Order, Knight of the Order of Dannebrog, by Her Majesty Queen Margrethe II of Denmark. Research interests: Oral Health Services Research, Epidemiology, and Preventive Dentistry.  He has more than 100 articles, reports and book chapters, and more than 100 published abstracts and invited presentations.  His present focus is on building Dental Public Health capacity in Oregon through collaborative efforts between the School of Dentistry and community organizations, Oregon Oral Health Coalition and local coalitions, the State Oral Health Program, The Primary Care Organization and by assisting in evaluation of public dental health activity outcomes. He is a member of the Oregon Health Authority Public Health Advisory Board; and Dental Director of the Board of directors, Healthshare of Oregon.

Ms Nicole Stauf

Ms Nicole Stauf, MA, has a background in political science and international project management in developing countries. For the past seven years, she has been working in the field of public health. She mainly focuses on school health, water, sanitation and hygiene in schools, NCDs and oral health. She contributed to the development of policies, action plans, standards and programme manuals for different organizations such as UNICEF, WHO and the German Development Cooperation. She is also a Master candidate of Public Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

For the past seven years, she has been working in the field of public health for The Health Bureau - Consultants for Global Health

Dr Faleh Tamimi

Dr Tamimi is a Canada Research Chair and an Associate Professor (tenured) at the Faculty of Dentistry of McGill University, Montreal, Canada. Dr Tamimi holds two clinical certificates, in Geriatric Dentistry and in Implant-Prosthodontics,  as well as a Ph.D. and a postdoctoral fellowship in Biomaterials. He has published over 111 peer reviewed articles , 15 patents and over 200 presentations in national and international conferences. Dr Tamimi’s research interests are in finding solutions to clinical problems through the development and application of new biomaterials and pharmacological treatments. His research includes the discovery of the effect of medications on implant osseointegration, development of 3D printed dentures and the discovery of multiple biomaterials for bone regeneration. His work have been highlighted in Nature Reviews Endocrinology, as well as in the popular media (i.e. print, radio and television interviews in media such as Newsweek Magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Radio Canada, CTV, Global News). Dr Tamimi is also involved in knowledge transfer activities. Along with a group of researchers and software developers, he created a web application ( that helps thousands of dentists globally to access scientific evidence to improve the treatment of their patients.

Dr Benoit Varenne

Benoit Varenne is Dental Officer in the Prevention of Noncommunicable Diseases (NCDs) department, World Health Organization (WHO), HQ, Geneva. The objective of his position is to lead WHO’s work on the global agenda on oral health. Before joining WHO HQ, Benoit was the Regional Advisor for Oral Health in the WHO African region and the focal point for the WHO/ITU “Be He@lthy, Be Mobile” programme. In prior years, Benoit worked in consulting firms as a public health consultant for several years, as a consultant for WHO in the Eastern Mediterranean region and worked closely with numerous NGOs and other international health organizations. He has assisted ministries of health and health care planners in several parts of the world with a special focus on the African continent. Benoit Varenne graduated in medical dentistry in 1993 at the University of Clermont-Ferrand, France and holds a PhD in Public Health and Epidemiology from University of Pierre and Marie Curie (Paris VI). In addition to France, Benoit Varenne has studied in community health at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

Dr Paula Vassallo

Dr. Paula Vassallo received her degree in Dentistry from the University of Malta in 1992 and has been practicing as a dentist since 1993.  She also holds a Diploma in Dental Public Health from the Royal College of Surgeons of England, a Master of Science in Dental Public Health from the University College London and an MBA from the Warwick Business School. In 2011 she was elected Fellow of the Faculty of Public Health of the Royal Colleges of Physicians of the United Kingdom. Dr. Vassallo is a Consultant in Dental Public Health and is currently the Director of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention in Malta with the Government of Malta and is actively involved in promoting health in Malta.  She is a lecturer in Preventive and Community Dentistry and Dental Public Health at the University of Malta. Dr. Vassallo is a board member of the Council of European Chief Dental Officers.  She is also member of the health research group of the Institute of Small Island States, which is based in Malta.  She is Past President of the Council of European Chief Dental Officers and is immediate past Chairperson of the Platform for Better Oral health in Europe. She has also chaired the Working Group of Oral Health in The CED (Council of European Dentists). She has recently been elected as Vice President of the European Association of Dental Public Health.

Mathis Winkler

A founding member of Hilfsaktion Noma, Mathis studied African Politics at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London and studied journalism at Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism in New York. He worked for newspapers in the US and Germany before joining Germany's international broadcaster Deutsche Welle (DW) as an editor. Between 2009 and 2016, he managed media development projects in Eastern Europe and Asia for DW Akademie. He is currently on a three-year leave of absence from DW to focus on Hilfsaktion Noma's projects full-time.