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 Call for abstracts are now open for the Australian Public Health Conference 2018.

The Australian Public Health Conference (formally the PHAA Annual Conference) is a national conference held by the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) which presents a national and multi-disciplinary perspective on public health issues. PHAA members and non-members can contribute to discussions on the broad range of public health issues and exchange ideas, knowledge and information on the latest developments in public health. The Conference was first established in the 1970’s and will be celebrating its 45th year held in 2018.


Through development of public health policies, advocacy, research and training, PHAA seeks better health outcomes for Australian’s and the Conference acts as a pathway for public health professionals to connect and share new and innovative ideas that can be applied to local settings and systems to help create and improve health systems for local communities. 


The 2018 the Conference theme will be ‘Leadership in public health: Challenges for local and planetary communities’.


The theme has been established to reflect the many challenges that public health faces and that we need strong leadership to address these challenges. We wish to recognise existing leaders and to inspire new leaders, while acknowledging that we are all connected to the communities in which we live, work and play.


Far North Queensland is a place of geographic diversity that hosts many communities, such as people living in regional and remote areas and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples. It is also home to The Great Barrier Reef and other important ecological areas, and is one of the gateways to our neighbours in the Asia Pacific region. The Australian Public Health Conference took inspiration from this location to provide an opportunity for all people in public health to come together to discuss and learn about the work being done in these communities, and within the context of our working relationship with our planet. None of us live in isolation and what happens in our own communities has implications and relevance for those in other communities, our nation and globally.


After many years of public health successes related to road traffic injury and tobacco control, challenges still remain, particularly obesogenic environments; gaps in health and social outcomes between Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Peoples, those with multicultural backgrounds and others; and the ever-present need to address the social and ecological determinants of health. This conference provides a forum to address these issues, as well as to advocate for change. We will hear about successes from acknowledged and future public health leaders, inspiring all to take up the mantle to improve the health of all communities.

To download a copy of the Call for Abstracts flyer please click here.

Abstract submissions close on Sunday 8 April 2018, at 11:59pm AEST.

Abstract Submission

We welcome submission of abstracts for presentations relevant to the conference themes.

Priority will be given to presentations that offer critical or reflective comment rather than purely program or descriptive papers.

Papers that have clear public health care significance will be considered and accepted in association with the Conference theme and outcomes of the presentation.

Priority will be given to presentations that offer critical or reflective comment rather than purely program or descriptive papers. Papers will be accepted and considered in two domains:

  • Research

       Background, Methods, Results, Conclusion

  • Policy / Practice
    Clear context, process, analysis, outcomes


Presentations on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples’ health are particularly welcome. 

Presenters of research focusing on particular Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities are to provide with their abstract an additional paragraph outlining whether the relevant community/ies have provided permission to publicise the research findings.

All abstracts are to be submitted electronically using the abstract submission portal link below. 

Select the Abstract Submission tab and follow the prompts. 

It is the submitting author’s responsibility to ensure that the abstract uploaded to the server is the correct version.

Online abstract document loading is completed via browsing your selected computer drive. Abstracts submitted for presentation will be published exactly as received and should be checked for spelling and grammar prior to submission. Do not submit a version with ‘track changes’ active.

All presenters must register at the time of confirming their acceptance presentation offer and pay the conference registration fee.

Abstract Presentation Awards


The abstract presentation awards have been created to highlight the great work presented at the Australian Public Health Conference and recognise the contribution presenters have to the program and public health sector.

The Conference Advisory Committee will appoint reviewers for the Australian Public Health Conference to review the abstract presentations and mark them against set criteria. The winners of the awards for each category will be announced in the closing plenary session on Friday 28 September 2018.


  • Public Health Research Award

  • Advocacy & Leadership Award

  • Capacity Building Award

  • Early Career/Young Professional Award

  • First Time Presenter Award

  • Best Poster Award

For more information on the abstract presentation awards, please click here.

Conference Topics

The program has been designed to provide lively and productive discussions and contributions from all professionals engaged in public health. We invite you to submit abstracts related to research, policy or practice under the following session themes:

  • Planetary health

  • Leadership

  • Community

  • Contemporary health initiatives

  • Models of care

  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health

  • Ageing and public health

  • Disaster and community resilience

  • Regional and rural health issues

  • Public health and human rights

  • Obesogenic environments

  • Challenges and failures in public health

  • Social or ecological determinants of health

  • Gaps in health for people of diverse backgrounds

  • Prevention

  • Protection

  • Health promotion


Presentation Types


A 90 minute workshop session that provides participants with the opportunity to develop new skills. This may take the form of a combination of practical and/or instructional presentations combined with activities, interactive group or individual work. Presenters should identify a minimum of 3 learning objectives in their abstract.

Oral Presentations


Long Oral
Presenters will have a total of 15 minutes (10 minutes to present & 5 minutes’ discussion). There will be 6 speakers per session. The session will have a nominated chair.


Short Oral
There will be a concurrent session for short oral presentations. Presenters will have a total of six minutes’, (5 minutes presentation and 1 minute for a question), using up to 3 power point slides, 1. Beginning (background) > 2. middle (body) > 3. end (summary) and be prepared to answer one question briefly at the conclusion of each talk. 
The session will have a nominated chair.


Table Top
Table tops act as a pathway for networking and sharing of information directly with delegates in an interactive setting. Table Tops involve multiple presenters, with each presenter at a round table of up-to 9 participants. Each presentation has been allocated 10 minutes – 5 minutes for presenting and 5 minutes for questions. A bell will be rung at 5 minutes indicating questions should commence.

Once your 10 minutes is up, music will start playing and you will need to move to the next table number then repeat your presentation. If you are located on the final table number, please ensure you move to Table 1.

As each table will only be allocated 1 reserved sign for each speaker, we can only accept one speaker per table.


Poster Presentations
Designated periods will be allocated in the program when presenters will attend their posters to take questions and discuss their work.

Abstract Requirements


  • All intended presentations require the submission of an abstract. All abstracts will be subject to peer review.

  • Refer to the online abstract submission form or manual submission form for requirements.

  • The abstract title should be no longer than 12 words.

  • The abstract should be a maximum of 250 words in simple text paragraphs without images or tables.

  • The abstract should include sub-headings in relation to the chosen domain, suggested headings are below:
    Research: Background, Methods, Results, Conclusion
    Policy / Practice: Context, Process, Analysis, Outcomes

  • Short Oral presentations should use the following sub headings: Background, Body, Summary.

  • A maximum of two (2) abstracts may be submitted per presenting author

  • If there is more than one presenter (long oral presentations only),  all correspondence will be sent to the person whose name and email address is entered first with the abstract.

  • When abstract presentation offers are sent out, authors need to be accepted the offer to present. If no response is received within the specified timeframe, another abstract can be offered in its place.

  • Identify 2-3 learning objectives significant to the presentation.


Abstract submissions close on Sunday 8 April 2018, at 11:59pm AEST
Dates and Deadlines​​

  • Call for abstracts open - Monday 19 February 2018

  • Close call for abstracts - Sunday 8 April 2018, at 11:59pm AEST

  • Advice of abstract review results - Early May 2018

  • Presenter registration deadline - Sunday 29 July 2018

Please note: All presenters must register at the time of confirming their acceptance of the offer to present and pay the conference registration fee.