Richard is a qualified tropical parasitologist with 29 years’ experience as a public health manager. Following four years in primary health care development for Zaire through the mid-1980s, he spent four years in malaria treatment research with Oxford University and the Medical Research Council with programmes in Gambia and Sierra Leone. Since the start of the Rwanda crisis in 1994 Richard has dedicated his efforts to developing disease control initiatives in conflict-based emergencies and natural disasters – working with OXFAM, Tearfund and MERLIN. He established and developed emergency disease control programmes in Liberia, Guinea, Sierra Leone, DR Congo, Brazzaville Congo, Kenya, Angola, Southern Sudan, Burundi, Afghanistan and East Timor.
Richard was the Roll Back Malaria coordinator for complex emergencies, with the Global Secretariat (early 2000 to late 2002) at the World Health Organisation. He established and managed the cross-sectoral partnerships that resulted in the development of important new disease control new tools and strategies for malaria control. These ranged from the “Malaria Control in Humanitarian Emergencies: An Inter-agency Field Handbook” and the “Integrated Vector Management in Humanitarian Emergencies Toolkit”, to insecticidal durable wall lining and non-mesh mosquito nets purpose designed for outdoor sleeping nomadic communities.
In recent years, Richard has presented at numerous international tropical disease and health related conferences, on:
- the state of vector control tools and standards today; the current hurdles to prevention and elimination; and
- the intersection of complex emergencies (both natural and manmade) and tropical disease epidemiology.