By Prof Tissa Wijeratne, from AUT, Auckland, New Zealand

On 27 November 2018, AUT (Auckland University Of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand) was host to the one-day Global Brain Summit to celebrate the launch of a special edition of The Lancet Neurology devoted to a series of papers on the Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study.

The Summit is a collaboration between AUT, The Lancet Neurology and Global Burden of Disease (GBD) study, which is coordinated by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington. The largest study of its kind in the world addressing the global burden of neurological disorders, the data provides the World Health Organization and governments worldwide with vital national and global information

Professor William Carroll, President, World Federation of Neurology, was among the speakers that gathered international experts and officials from the Asia-Pacific region's Ministries of Health and executives of international organisations including the World Health Organization, World Stroke Organization, World Federation of Neurology, National Institutes for Health (USA), the Global Burden of Disease study, and The Lancet to Auckland to learn about current burden of neurological disease estimates.

It was a great pleasure to attend and speak at the Summit and be able to present these highlights for the global membership of World Federation Neurology. The Summit was opened by New Zealand's Minister of Health, the Hon. Dr. David Clark.

Amongst the distinguished speakers were:

  • Professor William Carroll, President, World Federation of Neurology
  • Dr. Elena Becker‐Barroso, Editor‐in‐Chief, The Lancet Neurology
  • Hon. Dr David Clark, Minister of Health, New Zealand
  • Professor Dereck McCormack, Vice Chancellor, AUT
  • Professor Max Abbot, Dean, Faculty of Health and Environmental Sciences, AUT
  • Professor Valeria Caso, Past President, European Stroke Organization
  • Professor Frédéric Destrebecq, Executive Director, European Brain Council
  • Professor Kathryn McPherson, Chief Executive, Health Research Council of New Zealand
  • Professor Walter Koroshetz, Director of the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke,
  • Professor Christopher Murray, Director, Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME), University of Washington
  • Professor Valery Feigin, Director National Institute for Stroke and Applied Neurosciences, AUT
  • Professor Michael Brainin, President, World Stroke Organisation
  • Professor Shamsideen Ogun, President, African Academy of Neurology & Nigeria Stroke Organisation
  • Professor Tissa Wijeratne, Chair, Public awareness and advocacy, World Federation of Neurology & Chair, SIG, Migraine and headache disorders, World Federation of Neuro-Rehabilitation.


The 2018 Lancet Neurology GBD summit has been a resounding success.  The GBD collaboration will have a direct impact on improving patient care. WFN will be critically important in implementing this exceptionally good work and the 2019 Dubai World Congress of Neurology will be highlighting these issues with pragmatic solutions.

We look forward to seeing you all in Dubai.


Watch the recorded live stream of the Summit