Minh Cuong Duong recognised internationally

Dr Minh Cuong Duong awarded the STAR Professor A. Noam Chomsky Rising Star Emerging Scholar Achievement Award

Minh Cuong Duong profile photo

This October, Dr Minh Cuong Duong was named the recipient of this prestigious, international award as a recognition of his excellence in teaching, research, and scholarship enriching higher education and making a difference. Dr Duong is a lecturer and researcher in epidemiology and infectious disease prevention and control at the UNSW School of Population Health. Prior to this award, Duong was a proud recipient of prestigious Australian government’s scholarships including Endeavour Award, Prime Minister's Australia Asia Award, and Australia Award Fellowship, as well as three Australian Alumni Grant Funds that helped develop his reputation in the field of infectious disease research.

What is the key focus of your program of research?

Based on the catchphrase ‘think globally and act locally’ of global health and using Vietnam as the main study context, I have led internationally collaborative research projects to address prevalent infectious diseases in vulnerable populations and low-resource countries. The aim is to enhance the feasible strategies for the prevention, control, and management of these diseases in low-resource settings.

What motivated you to take up this topic?

Being a Vietnamese-trained infectious disease specialist, I deeply understand the burden of infectious diseases in low-resource countries. The prevention, control, and management of these diseases in this setting remain a challenge due to multiple factors, including the modifiable ones such as health knowledge and lifestyle that are the focus of my research.

How has your program of research benefited the community?

My research has provided benefits in different ways through health policy and clinical practice improvement.

Regarding hepatitis, I was appointed by the World Health Organization as their consultant on the national response to viral hepatitis in haemodialysis facilities in Vietnam in 2018. In 2023, I completed my invited industry consultancy regarding strategies to improve viral hepatitis C screening and for the elimination of this disease.

My team and I also alerted the emergence of antimalarial drug resistance in Africa through a paper published in early 2021. Our studies on COVID-19 were submitted to the Vietnam Ministry of Health to enable policy making and were replicated in other countries like Indonesia during the peak of the pandemic. My studies on other diseases such as tetanus and severe sepsis help improve their clinical management strategies. 

Who are you collaborating with?

My research program has created opportunities to collaborate with researchers with different expertise from local and international institutes, such as UNSW Sydney; Sydney University; Universitas Sebelas Maret; Oxford University; Oxford University Clinical Reresearch Unit (OUCRU), Hospital for Tropical Diseases, Phenikaa University, National University and Ministry of Health in Vietnam.

November 2023