A Shot in the Arm Podcast with Ben Plumley

A Shot in the Arm Podcast with Ben Plumley

A podcast about exploring innovation and equity in global health

Putting HIV back into Pandemics Preparedness at the World Health Assembly

Ben is joined by two friends of the pod, Christine Stegling, Deputy Director of UNAIDS, and Vuyiseka Dubula, Department Head, Community Rights & Gender at the Global Fund, to reflect on what this week’s developments at the WHA, mean for the global AIDS response, and why the lessons of HIV do not seem to have been learned in access to medicines and pandemics preparation. And that's a wrap from the 77th World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland! Thanks for joining us! #WHA77 #HIV #AIDS #pandemicspreparedness #accesstomedicines
June 5, 2024

Taking the Temperature on Climate Health at the World Health Assembly with Foundation S

Vanina Laurent-Ledru, the Director General of Foundation S, the philanthropic organization of Sanofi, joins Ben live on the podcast to chat about the impact of climate change on global health.
June 5, 2024

What we learned at the 77th World Health Assembly with Global Health Council’s Elisha Dunn-Georgiou

Ben sits down with Elisha Dunn-Georgiou from the Global Health Council to reflect on decisions made, agreements missed, and funding committed to at the 77th WHA in Geneva, Switzerland.
June 4, 2024

Access to Medicines – There’s Good News at the World Health Assembly

Some good news to report from Geneva - albeit from an independent cinema in downtown Geneva. The Medicines Patent Pool premiered a short documentary highlighting 10 years of 10 billion doses, and 24 million people on a new, transformational treatment regimen it helped coordinate with generics manufacturers and the originator pharmaceutical company. We tell the story, speaking with ViiV Healthcare CEO, Deborah Waterhouse and MPP’s Director of Policy, Strategy and Advocacy. #Dolutegravir #DTG #HIV #accesstomedicines #voluntarylicensing #pediatrics #medicinespatentpool #MPP
May 29, 2024

What’s Really At Stake at the World Health Assembly

Ben is joined by Katri Bertram, Berlin-based global health policy strategist, to reflect on yesterday’s WHA developments on international health regulations & the pandemics accord. She also challenges the global health community to accept that we don’t live in an era of never ending progress, but must address the stagnation, even regression in our impact on health outcomes. It’s a powerful and direct call to action. #WHA77 #WHO #globalhealth #Germany #globalhealthsecurity #pandemicsaccord #refugees #climatehealth #ukraine #gaza
May 29, 2024

Syphilis on the rise at the World Health Assembly

While the WHA grapples with pandemics preparation today, we go behind the headlines to chat with World Health Organization’s Dr. Teo Wi about a report on the dramatic rise of sexually transmitted diseases presented to the World Health Assembly later this week - and her refreshing, direct views on how to address the surprising causes driving these increases. New report flags major increase in sexually transmitted infections, amidst challenges in HIV and hepatitis #WHA77 #WHO #STIs #sex #syphilis #diagnostics #antibiotics #datingapps #erectiledysfunction #stigma #guilt #shame #sexeducation 
May 28, 2024

Back to the Future at the World Health Assembly

Our first episode from the 77th World Health Assembly in Geneva Switzerland, sees us introducing a new host, Jeff Sturchio, who walks Ben through the key issues to watch this week - top of the list are the precarious future of the pandemics treaty and the WHO’s first investment round. #WHA77 #WorldHealthAssembly #WHO #pandemicstreaty #pandemicsaccord #WHOInvestmentRound #UNAIDS
May 27, 2024

All About ViiV: An Interview with CEO Deborah Waterhouse at CROI 2024

ViiV Healthcare is the world’s  only pharmaceutical company dedicated exclusively to HIV, and in this episode, Ben meets its CEO, Deborah Waterhouse, to explore the company’s approach to HIV R&D and commercial success - as well as the controversies its global access strategy has attracted for its new long acting injectables. Deborah and Ben find they have much in common beyond both being Brits growing up in the 70s and 80s, from being students of the humanities choosing to make careers in health, to their favorite pop music. #ViiV #pharma #HIV #AIDS #treatment #Prevention #PrEP #dualtherapy #longacting #injectables #globalaccess #globalequity #discrimination #positiveaction #womenleaders #IWD 
March 13, 2024
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A Shot in the Arm Podcast with Ben Plumley

Advances in healthcare for the many, not the few? How to rebuild trust between clinical science and the general public? Global Health strategist Ben Plumley meets experts from around the world to explore the pressing issues in global health innovation and equity, from biotechnology, to access to medicines, communications, and the decolonization of public health.


Ben Plumley

Ben Plumley

Ben is an internationally recognized global health strategist and advocate, with over 25 years’ experience in the UN, private and non-profit sectors. Now based in California, Ben’s unique strength is in mobilizing stakeholders to create impactful public private partnerships in global health.

Ben is Head of Engagement, Partnerships and Impact at Ikana Health Action Lab, and a Senior Fellow at the Global Health Reporting Center.

Ben is an internationally respected podcaster, and host of A Shot In The Arm Podcast, a cutting-edge video podcast about innovation and equity in global health – particularly in the age of pandemics. Guests have included Dr Anthony Fauci, Congresswoman Barbara Lee and Professor Heidi Larson. Ben’s other podcasts include Business Fights AIDS, a behind the scenes look at his collaboration with the late Ambassador Richard Holbrooke to mobilize the business response to AIDS, and Vax Up – a video podcast designed for vaccine implementers on how social technologies can be used to promote vaccine confidence.

Between 2010 and 2018, he was the CEO of the Global Health Technical Assistance and Policy Think Tank, the Pangaea Global AIDS Foundation. As well as non-profits, he has extensive public and private sector experience, having been Vice President of Access at Johnson & Johnson, Chief of Staff to Dr Peter Piot, the founding Executive Director of UNAIDS, and a public consultation policy adviser at the UK Human Fertilization and Embryology Authority.

Ben is Chair of the MTV Staying Alive Foundation, producer of the award-winning MTV Shuga terrestrial and digital soap operas, promoting young people’s sexual and reproductive health across Southern Africa and India.

He is also the incoming Chair of the San Francisco Community Health Center, a national center of excellence which provides ground-breaking comprehensive health and wellness services for hard-to-reach homeless, trans and drug-using communities in San Francisco’s tenderloin district. Ben was educated at Churchill College, Cambridge University in the United Kingdom.

Ben's other interests include the literature (and particularly the essays) of Aldous Huxley (perhaps the greatest essayist of the 20th century), as well as the genre of speculative fiction - particularly Margaret Atwood (definitely the best English-language writer of our era). And, to the alarm of many of his friends, he is passionate about British, German and Japanese electronic pop music, particularly the Pet Shop Boys, Rosenstolz and Kirinji.

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