Message from the President, Dr. C.H. Leong, February 2001

Dear Fellows,

Future Policy Areas and Reforms to be pondered by the Academy

Yes, it is a bit belated. Yet, happy and meaningful wishes are never enough. May I, therefore, offer to all in the Academy the very best for the Year of the Snake. Talking about snakes, if snakes are in any way related to the symbol of the medical and dental professions, and they obviously so, for snakes prominently don the caduceus, then this year should bring joy and luck to the medical service, the professions and the Academy.

When I took office late last year, I outlined my plans to bring the Academy forward to serve the Fellows, the other members of the professions, and the public at large.

Future Policy Areas to be deliberated

On these premise, at the first Council meeting, a policy discussion paper laying down the areas of possible reform was tabled and deliberated. The areas include:-

  1. Facilities of the Academy Building Better utilisation of the Premises Secretariat Service and Facilities to Academy Colleges

  2. Matters relating to Training

    • Training Policy
      - Should there be more "General" Specialists or "Supra" Specialists?
    • Review of Training Programmes for different Colleges
      - Should a six-year training programme apply to all Colleges and Specialties?
    • The "Role" of Academy and Colleges in HA's training posting
    • Utilisation and assessment of the Private Sector as training alternatives
    • Remedial training for Non Fellows

  3. Matters relating to CME

    • Structured CME points
    • "Tidying up" of CME points
    • Possibility of introducing electronic CME programmes

  4. Quality Assurance - the role of the Academy
  5. Common Protocols in Patient Care in Private and Public Sectors - the role of the Academy
  6. The relationship of the Academy and the Colleges
  7. The communication of the Academy and the Fellows

I am happy to report that the Council approved all in principle and more. Sentiments have also been expressed that our constitution and regulations need to be reviewed, in particular on the representation of the various Colleges in the Academy Council, and the election of the Academy's Office Bearers.

Needless to say, reform in each policy area requires detailed deliberation and proper promulgation to ensure success.

Academy Facilities to be upgraded

At the second Council meeting, it was decided that the facilities of the Academy should be upgraded further to serve our Fellows an the Colleges. As a result, the following were decided:-

  1. A Library will be installed.
  2. A Fellows' Leisure Lounge will be installed.
  3. A sizeable Exhibition Hall will be made available for rental to our pharmaceutical and medical equipments partners for them to demonstrate their products to our Fellows and for revenue generation for the Academy.
  4. New Offices will be created to provide more space for some Colleges with proven needs.

To do all these, funding will be required. There is surplus in the Academy's Foundation Fund, which has been created for the Academy's building needs. Furthermore, through the enthusiasm of some Council Members, and my gratitude to them, named donations are in the pipeline. I do not envisage that we need to tap our Fellows for such building costs.

Your input is essential.

In the next few Council meetings, the Academy will most likely be deliberating the future of Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Continuing Professional Development (CPD). Fellows will obviously be consulted on Council's initial views.

Remember, we are all part of the Academy. It is through your wise counsel, intelligent advice and constructive criticism that will make your Academy tick!

C. H. Leong