Panel Discussion
series event

​​Health promotion and vaccination in the age of social media: insights from the frontline​

This hybrid event features a panel discussion with key experts on the frontline of health communication and vaccination policy.

Blue background with Vaccine centre logo

​​As part of a series of events to mark this year’s World Immunisation Week, the Vaccine Centre will be hosting a panel discussion on the pivotal role social media plays in informing and influencing public health strategies and vaccination efforts worldwide, particularly during pandemics; A conversation not to be missed.

​​This interactive and engaging session will include presentations from leading voices in academia, public health and social media platforms globally, followed by a round table discussion and audience Q&As. The event will explore how social media can be used to promote public health communication and vaccination efforts, while also addressing the challenges of misinformation and digital literacy. 

​​This is a public event designed for academics, clinicians, policy-makers, and anyone working or interested in vaccination or the intersection of digital technology and health, providing a unique platform for sharing insights and strategies to effectively leverage social media for health promotion.​ 


​​Dr Natalia Pasternak, Professor at Columbia University, USA, at the Center for Science and Society, and the president of Instituto Questao de Ciência (IQC) in Brazil

Natalia Pasternak is a microbiologist, with a PhD and post-doctorate in Microbiology, in the field of Bacterial Genetics at the University of São Paulo. Currently, she is a Senior Research Scholar at Columbia University's Center for Science and Society, a professor at the School of International Relations and Public Affairs (SIPA) and Barnard College, and a fellow at the Committee for Skeptical Inquiry (USA). She writes for the Brazilian national newspaper "O Globo" and The Skeptic Magazine (UK). She is also a visiting professor at Public Administration School at Getulio Vargas Foundation and is the president of the Question of Science Institute. She has received numerous awards and accolades from multiple countries for her work on science, skepticism and critical thinking, including making the BBC's 100 most influential women of 2021. She has written three books: Science in Our Daily Lives (which won Brazil's national literature prize for best science book in 2021), Against Reality: Science Denialism, its Causes and Consequences, and most recently, What Nonsense, which has become a bestseller in Brazil. Her research focuses on how to improve science communication and combat denialism and misinformation, bringing scientific thinking for future policy makers, and helping to create an international collaboration for science-based global policies.

See Natalia's Linkedin profile

​Dr Cherstyn Hurley, Immunisation publications manager, UKHSA

Cherstyn Hurley is the immunisation publications manager for the Immunisation and counter measures department of the UK Health Security Agency. She is a WHO trained Infodemic manager which a specialist interest in public heath communications which enable children’s,  young peoples’ and adult health literacy and to reach underserved communities. She is also a member of the Vaccine Safety Network advisory committee and committed to providing high quality vaccination information both on and offline.

​Dr Vishaal Virani, Head of UK Health, YouTube

Vishaal started his career as an NHS doctor, and subsequently transitioned into healthcare strategy consulting. He worked in strategy consulting for four years, with a particular focus on due diligence for private equity firms, and corporate strategy for hospitals and medical technology companies.

He then chose to pursue a longstanding interest in leveraging digital health to meaningfully improve patient outcomes - initially as business development and client success lead at Ada Health, a venture-backed AI health technology company; and then managing digital health solutions for a FTSE 100 consumer healthcare company that owns global brands such as Durex, Nurofen and Dettol. Vishaal now works at YouTube, where he is building out the brand new Health offering to empower millions of YouTube users and NHS organisations across the UK and beyond.

Vishaal is also a co-founder of Doctorpreneurs, the world’s largest community of medical innovators, governor of the Royal Free NHS Trust, guest lecturer on digital health at London Business School and UCL Global Business School for Health, advisor to various health tech start-ups, and serves on the Our Future Health Technology Advisory Board.

Event notices

  • Please note that you can join this event in person or you can join the session remotely
  • Please note that the recording link will be listed on this page when available


Free and open to all. No registration required.