This webinar was held on 24 June 2021 as part of the 2021 NCIRS COVID-19 vaccine webinar series.

View the video of this webinar to:

  • hear an update from local leaders working in the Indo-Pacific region about their efforts, challenges and next steps in COVID-19 vaccination
  • learn about the Australian Government’s commitment to help support safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine roll out for our neighbours in the region
  • hear about how Australian partners are also helping to support this approach.

Our expert panel members also answered several vaccine and vaccination program-related questions asked by the attendees.



Dr Odete

Dr Odete da Silva Viegas
Director General for Health Services, Timor-Leste Ministry of Health

Dr Odete da Silva Viegas is Director General for Health Services at Timor-Leste Ministry of Health. In this position, Dr Viegas has been integral in leading the COVID-19 public health response, with her focus now shifting towards the roll out of COVID-19 vaccines in Timor-Leste. 


Nevio S

Mr Nevio Sarmento
Senior Scientist, Timor-Leste National Health Laboratory

Mr Nevio Sarmento is a senior scientist and microbiologist at the National Health Laboratory in Timor Leste and member of the National Immunization Technical Advisory Group Timor-Leste (NITAG-TL). He advises the Ministry of Health on the protection of the Timorese people from vaccine preventable diseases through immunisation.  Mr Sarmento is employed by Menzies School of Health and Research and is currently undertaking a PhD at Menzies studying the serotypes of pneumococcus (Streptococcus pneumoniae) in pneumonia and malnourished children under five who are admitted to the Paediatric Department at Hospital Nacional Guido Valadares, Dili, Timor-Leste. Learn more about Mr Sarmento's work in Timor-Leste here. 



Dr Stephanie

Dr Stephanie Williams
Australian Ambassador for Regional Health Security, Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT)

As Ambassador, Dr Stephanie Williams supports the advancement of Australia’s interests in the Indo-Pacific by fostering linkages between Australia’s world-class public health and medical research experts and partners in the region. Dr Williams is a public health physician and epidemiologist, and has been DFAT's Principal Health Specialist since 2017.


Last updated August 2023