Registrations and abstract submissions are now open for the 2023 PMA Conference, which will be hosted in the Cook Islands! Click here for more information.

PMA Conference Abstracts: Dr Sam Manuela
Updates / Events, 16 May 23
As we get closer to the Pasifika Medical Association Conference, which is being held in the Cook Islands this year in September, we reflect on some of the presentations from last year's PMA Conference that were delivered by our Pacific colleagues.

Among those presenters was Dr Sam Manuela who presented on his study "Te 'Ākirāta Mārama - Mental Health in Cook Islands". 

What is your role/profession currently? 
Senior Lecturer in the School of Psychology, University of Auckland 

What was your abstract presentation about at the PMA Conference for 2022, and why are you passionate about it? 
I presented the methodology for Te ‘Akirāta Mārama, a study about the prevalence of mental health problems in adult populations in the Cook Islands. My passion for this area stems from myself being Cook Island and a want for more Cook Islands focused research in the mental health space. Providing high quality data on the state of mental health is one way to ensure that we know the extent to which people in the Cook Islands are experiencing mental health problems, in addition to providing a baseline to see how things may change in time. 

What are your aspirations for Pacific health? 
That our families can live their lives with full access to the psychosocial determinants that lead to healthy outcomes. 

How did you find the Conference last year? 
As I work as a researcher in social sciences, I found the strong biomedical focus a bit jarring at times. However, it was great to see and hear a desire for more culturally-safe approaches within health education, administration, and practice – and to see the way that many are designing and implementing interventions that draw on a wealth of Pacific knowledge. 

Abstract submissions for the Pasifika Medical Association Conference, which is hosted in September in the Cook Islands, is open until the 16 June 2023. Click here for more information and to submit an abstract.