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Human Anatomy Expo 2023

The Department of Anatomy recently organised the Human Anatomy Expo between 5th- 7th January 2023 at the Human Anatomy Lab. The 3-day expo was open from 10 am to 4.30 pm.

The department has been organising similar exhibitions for the past few years. However, this year, the exhibition was open to the public for the first time to promote education regarding human anatomy, as well as to create awareness and generate interest in the sciences and medical field among children.

There were some exciting and eye-catching booths throughout the event, which included videos presentations, book sales, photobooths, and games with prizes. Visitors had the opportunity to take a closer look at preserved body parts such as a 45-year-old human brain (dissected in half to show what it looks like on the inside), and the growth stages of a human baby. Two microscopes were also prepared for visitors to view different cellular morphologies of tissue samples from different parts of the human body. Another highlight of the Expo was the opportunity to touch a real cadaver that has been preserved!

The expo also coincided with an organ donation campaign where visitors could pledge to donate their organs.

FOM Researchers win 1st and 2nd prize at the My UM Pitch Rising Stars Competition

The Annual Universiti Malaya Research Carnival 2022 (UMRC 2022) with the theme “Connect, Engage, Partner: Accelerating Research Excellence” was held from 8th-10th January 2023. During this carnival, a competition called My UM Pitch, was held at the Dewan Tunku Chancellor on 9th January 2023. The competition aimed to provide a great platform for academicians and researchers (including post-doctoral and research fellows) to exercise their communication skills through a three-minute presentation using language that was comprehensible for a non-specialist audience.

Two academics from the Faculty of Medicine, Dr. Chong Pan Pan from The Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, and Dr. Bavani Arumugam from the Department of Biomedical Science, successfully secured the 1st and 2nd prize in the competition respectively. Dr. Chong’s award winning project was on “Autologous and Allogeneic Platelet-derived Extracellular Vesicles (P-EV) for the Repair of Knee Cartilage Injury and Osteoarthritis”, while Dr. Bavani’s project was on “Oral Insulin for Diabetes Therapy: A Point Mutation (Lys29Arg) Approach”. The prizes secured by both women were a RM30,000 and a RM20,000 research grant respectively.

ROSE Foundation launches Phase 3 of ETIQA’s Free Cervical Cancer Screening Programme

Phase 3 of Etiqa's Free Cervical Screening Programme with the ROSE Foundation (Removing Obstacles to Cervical ScrEening), was officially launched by YAB Dato’ Seri Dr. Wan Azizah Dr. Wan Ismail, Patron of PUSPANITA (Wives of Civil Servants and Women Civil Servants Association) as part of concerted efforts to eliminate cervical cancer in Malaysia. Funded by Etiqa and implemented by the ROSE Foundation, the one-year nationwide programme is worth RM1.22 million, aiming to screen 5,500 eligible women aged 30 to 65 from identified B40 communities.

Phase 3 of the programme introduces an on-site colposcopy treatment for women which includes an initial assessment using a mobile colposcopy device that produces high quality images of the cervix. Upon assessment, patients with pre-cancer virus will be treated at the location using a Portable Thermal Coagulator. Apart from providing an innovative solution to detecting pre-cancer-causing HPV viruses in women, the programme will now empower women to get themselves treated, which will eventually help to save more lives.

The event was graced by YAB Dato’ Seri Dr Wan Azizah Dr Wan Ismail, Patron of PUSPANITA (Wives of Civil Servants and Women Civil Servants Association). Also present at the event were Datuk R. Karunakaran, Chairman of Maybank Ageas Holdings Berhad (the parent company of Etiqa General Insurance Berhad, Etiqa Life Insurance Berhad, Etiqa General Takaful Berhad, and Etiqa Family Takaful Berhad), Paul Low Hong Ceong, Chief Executive Officer of Etiqa Life Insurance Berhad, Professor Dato’ Dr. Adeeba Kamarulzaman, Chair of the ROSE Foundation, Professor Dr. Woo Yin Ling, Founder and Trustee of the ROSE Foundation, and Puan Sri To’ Puan Seri Norizam binti Che Mohd Nor, Yang DiPertua of PUSPANITA.

The Rose Foundation hopes to reach more Malaysian women and their family members by providing accessible screening and a treatment facility. Professor Dato’ Dr. Adeeba Kamarulzaman, Chair of the ROSE Foundation said, “Thanks to Etiqa’s sponsorship, we are pleased to introduce the Mobile Colposcopy equipment that enables the volunteer medical teams to travel to rural/interior communities and treat the women screened who are HPV positive. With this new equipment, they can receive appropriate support, treatment and care.”

“Program ROSE embraces all aspects of cervical cancer screening that integrates self-sampling, primary HPV testing and the digital health platform using mobile technology, and ensuring women who require follow-up are linked to care for treatment,” she added.

Professor Dr. Woo Yin Ling, Founder and Trustee of the ROSE Foundation said that “Program ROSE has achieved another milestone in cervical screening with the mobile colposcopy, and is a step up in our outreach programme that allows on-site medical treatment for women tested positive with HPV, particularly in reaching out to remote rural areas. With the mobile colposcopy, Program ROSE can return to the location after the initial HPV PCR self-sampling screening and provide treatment for those tested HPV positive on-site. This helps boost the women’s confidence as they would be receiving linkage to care and further follow-up treatment, which is Program ROSE’s integrated approach for cervical screening.”

Thus far, Program ROSE has been introduced to over 150 health clinics across 12 states. 28 ROSE-friendly government hospitals with over 90 healthcare professionals are now engaged to provide follow-up treatment for women who have been tested positive through our programme. We are grateful for their extended support structure and achievements for Program ROSE.

The ROSE Foundation was established in 2019 as a company limited by guarantee and as a charitable foundation in Malaysia. It is a joint venture between Universiti Malaya and the Australian Centre for the Prevention of Cervical Cancer (formerly known as VCS, Victorian Cytology Service Inc.). The ROSE Foundation has set itself the ambitious goal of making Malaysia one of the first nations in the region to be free of cervical cancer. Program ROSE offers women the choice of using a self-swab: a quick, convenient and effective approach to enable molecular tests to be undertaken, followed by prompt delivery of results straight to women's mobile phones.


AAHCI Southeast Asia Regional Meeting

The Alliance of Academic Health Centers International, also known as AAHCI, was established in 2007 as the international arm of the Association of Academic Health Centers, or AAHC. Its original goal was to encourage international cooperation and the advancement of organizational strategy and management proficiency. AAHCI serves as a forum for leaders from developed and emerging academic health centers and systems worldwide to communicate, exchange best practices, and explore various topics, several of which are specific to academic health centers. In 2022, AAHC/I merged with the Association of American Medical Colleges. AAHCI is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC).

The AAHCI Regional Offices serve the geographic region while maintaining a close tie with the AAHCI headquarters in Washington DC, USA. The AAHCI Southeast Asia Regional Office's duties include coordinating regional conferences and events, promoting discourse on critical topics relevant to academic health centers and systems in Southeast Asia, aiding in the evolution of AAHCI initiatives, and enhancing connections between present and potential AAHC and AAHCI affiliates. The AAHCI SEA Regional Office is currently hosted by the Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Indonesia and Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya will undertake the role as the next AAHCI SEA Regional Office coming July 2023.

The 2023 AAHCI SEA Regional Meeting organised by Universitas Indonesia was held on 11th – 12th January 2023 in Bali, Indonesia. This event was the first in-person meetings for all the members since Covid-19 pandemic made it impossible to have such gatherings. The theme of the meeting was ‘Partnerships for Preparedness: Improving Response and Recovery in the Southeast Asia Region and Globally.’ The meeting provided academic health center leaders an opportunity to gather and explore the challenges facing their health systems. Session topics include residency programs, medical education, leadership training, and many more.

Delegates from Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya were Professor Dr. April Camilla Roslani (Dean), Professor Dr. Yazid Jalaludin (Deputy Dean of Undergraduate), Professor Dr. Jamuna Vadivelu (Head of MERDU), Assoc. Prof. Dr. N. Vairavan (Head of IUFOM) and Ms. Caroline Chin (Assistant Registrar of PNP). Besides meeting the leaders from various member institutions to discuss and share knowledge, the FOM delegates also had a meeting with the current AAHCI SEA Regional Office host and the Director of the AAHCI to discuss the next steps for FOM to assume the role as the AAHCI SEA Regional Office for a 2-year term.

Entomology Workshop: Morphological and Molecular Identification
by Dr. Meng Li Wong and Dr. Wenn-Chyau Lee

The Faculty of Medicine, Universitas Sumatera Utara (USU) organized an entomology workshop in collaboration with Universiti Malaya (Malaysia), James Cook University (Australia), and the National Research and Innovation Agency (Indonesia) in January 2023. The workshop was carried out for a week from 16th- 20th January 2023 at the Faculty of Medicine, USU in Medan, Indonesia. The workshop was officiated by Dr. Inke Nadia Diniyanti Lubis, the Deputy Dean of USU. This workshop aimed to enhance the knowledge and skills of participants in morphological and molecular identification of mosquitoes, both in the field, and in the laboratory. The workshop was facilitated by four facilitators from Indonesia and Malaysia, namely Dr. Triwibowo Ambargarjito and Mr. Mujiyono from the National Research and Innovation Agency, as well as Dr. Wong Meng Li and Dr. Nanthakumar Jeyaprakasam from Universiti Malaya. The entomology workshop was attended by lecturers, postgraduate students, research assistants, and government officers.

The workshop was divided into two components. The first component encompassed lectures in morphological and molecular identification, mosquito dissection, and blood meal analysis, whereas the second component is comprised of practical sessions, where the participants acquired hands-on experience on mosquito morphology identification, mosquito dissection, deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) extraction from mosquitoes, and molecular identification using polymerase chain reaction (PCR). In addition, blood-meal analysis and sequence alignment analysis were included. Besides knowledge and experience sharing, this workshop also served as a platform for future cross-national collaborations between Malaysia, Indonesia, and Australia.

Photos from the Certificate Presentation Ceremony and Pledge Recitation for Final Year MBBS Students

On 18th January 2023, the Faculty hosted the Certificate Presentation and Pledge Recitation Ceremony to celebrate the Final Year MBBS Students of the 2020/2021 academic session. The event was officiated by Universiti Malaya Pro-Chancellor Toh Puan Dr. Aishah Ong. In attendance was Professor Dr. Yatimah Alias, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic & International), Professor Dr. April Camilla Roslani, Dean of Faculty of Medicine, as well as over 100 participants including students and members of the Faculty.

Application of Spatio-Temporal Epidemiology Analysis in Tropical Disease

By Nurmanisha binti Abdull Majid

On 27th January 2023, the Department of Parasitology’s Journal Club held a seminar on "Application of Spatio-Temporal Epidemiology Analysis in Tropical Disease", presented by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Romano Ngui via Zoom. He began the session by outlining the basic concept of spatial-temporal epidemiology. Spatial-temporal refers to an analysis method that uses data collected across time and space and has at least one spatial and temporal property, while epidemiology refers to the understanding of risk factors or the effect of intervention. The transmission of infectious diseases is closely linked to the concept of spatial and temporal proximity. By using the Geographic Information System (GIS), a type of database containing geographic data, we are able to create, manage, analyze, and map all types of data to help understand patterns, relationships, and their geographic context. In 1854, John Snow used the power of mapping to determine the root cause of a cholera outbreak in London, ultimately revealing contaminated water as the source of the epidemic.

In this seminar, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Romano also shared some of his collaborative work with other researchers to map the geographical distribution of infectious diseases and their associated vectors, including soil-transmitted helminthiases, leptospirosis, malaria, and dengue. One of his studies which utilised the GIS and geostatistical methods in determining the spatial dispersal of the dengue vector Ae. albopictus mosquitoes in residential areas have assisted health authorities in enhancing their current approach to vector control programmes. This was by performing more targeted residual spraying of Ae. albopictus resting sites, especially in high-density areas of the species and where hotspots have been identified. Assoc. Prof. Dr. Romano emphasised the GIS as an alternative tool for monitoring and controlling various infectious diseases, a powerful tool that has been successfully implemented to help address several major disease outbreaks (SARS and COVID-19), and a tool to provide information through the analysis of a particular disease's geographical and real-time distribution (spatial-temporal analysis).

Speaker’s Background
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Romano Ngui obtained his Bachelor of Biomedical Science in 2008, Master of Medical Science in 2010 and Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in 2013 from Universiti Malaya, Malaysia. His PhD thesis has been awarded distinction by the Universiti Malaya. Currently, he is a senior lecturer at the Department of Parasitology, Faculty of Medicine, Universiti Malaya.

Website: https://medicine.um.edu.my/parasitology-department

Save The Date: Faculty of Medicine Fundraising Gala Dinner

Save this date and join us to enjoy Faculty of Medicine's in-house talents performing in the spirit of fundraising for the Faculty of Medicine Fundraising Gala Dinner!

FOM Chinese New Year Celebration 2023

The Faculty held its Chinese New Year Celebration to welcome the Year of the Water Rabbit on 7th February 2023 at Centrepoint, FOM. The event was officiated by the Dean of Faculty of Medicine, Professor Dr. April Camilla Roslani in the presence of the FOM Management Committee. The majority in attendance, including the academic and support staff, as well as medical students, were all dressed in red as a sign of prosperity and good luck to usher in the new year. There was also a Lion Dance performance and Best Dressed competition organised to add to the festivities. Below are some of the highlights from the event.

Special thanks to members of the Dean’s Office and the FOM Technical team who worked tirelessly for days prior to the event to ensure that the event setup was well-organised and in order for the occasion.

Advanced Otology and Lateral Skull Base Workshop
by Dr. Gagandeep Singh Mann

The Department of ENT recently organised the Advanced Otology and Lateral Skull Base Workshop from 14th to 17th February 2023. The objective and outcomes of this workshop are to train current ENT Surgeons, as well as residents to the pearls and pitfalls of endoscopic surgery in Rhinology & Anterior Skullbase as well as Otology and Lateral Skullbase.

The skull base region is highly complex and requires significant training to master. Our ultimate goal is to ensure our participants are familiarised with the anatomy and surgical techniques used around the skull base, and to enhance their learning curve for future practice. The practice on cadavers ensures that they are able to perform these surgeries with no risk to any living patient and to finetune their surgical technique and skills.

The course was conducted by Professor Dato' Dr. Prepageran Narayanan, who is an expert in Anterior and Lateral Skullbase Surgery. He was assisted by Professor Dr. Tang Ing Ping (UNIMAS) who is also a renowned skullbase surgeon, based in Kuching, Malaysia. Other Faculty members include Assoc. Prof. Dr. Revadi Govindaraju, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Jeyanthi Kulasegarah, Professor Dr. Zulkiflee Abu Bakar and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tengku Shahrizal Tengku Dato’ Omar.

The event began with a Welcome Address by the Main Dissector (Professor Dato' Dr Prepageran) to all 24 participants. For the Lateral Skull Base and Otology Setup, 12 participants were involved in the dissection, while others were observers. A majority of the participants were from abroad, which includes countries such as India and Pakistan, as well as countries from Southeast Asia, the Middle East, and Europe. The 4-day course contained a comprehensive itinerary, which were 2 days for Rhinology and anterior skull base, and 2 days for the Otology lateral skull base.

Current Status of Malaria and Potential for Control
prepared by Ng Yee Ling and Eira Nurfarisha binti Mohd Latif

Malaria has remained a global challenge since 100 years ago as it causes high morbidity and mortality rate. On 15th February 2023, Professor Georges Snounou presented an overview of malaria control as part of the Breakfast@UMHealth, chaired by Professor Dr. Fong Mun Yik. He initiated the talk by explaining the Plasmodium life cycle. The malaria infection starts with a blood meal by the infected mosquito, then it transmits the parasites into the human body in the form of sporozoites where the parasites infect human liver cells, this then develops into mature schizonts, the burst of liver cells, followed by the parasitic infection to human erythrocytes. The erythrocytic cycle of parasites causes humans to experience disease and symptoms. Professor Georges also presented the Plasmodium landmark events from 1880 until the present day by showing the number of malaria article publications where we can see the publication numbers increased substantially for the last 20 years. This was followed by the presentation on the prevalence, and areas where malaria often occurred. He said the understanding of the malaria epidemiology can be simple as it involves malaria transmission to humans by mosquitoes, and the mosquitoes can also be infected by taking infected human blood which consists of gametocytes. However, it can also be complex given the diversity of the anopheline mosquito species in the environment with different factors.

The malaria controls involve drug prophylaxis and treatment, reducing man-mosquito contact and vaccine development. Malaria drugs were found every time a war occurred (World War I, World War II, Korean War and Vietnam War). Professor Georges explained that the major problem of malaria control is drug resistance. This was followed by the explanation of multiple malaria vaccine candidates targeted against the sporogonic, pre-erythrocytic and erythrocytic Plasmodium. To date, there is only one of these targeted antigens called circumsporozoite protein (CSP), which is recommended by the World Health Organization (WHO). Professor Georges mentioned the major obstacle of malaria eradication specific to Southeast Asia which is the zoonotic infections that were caused by P. knowlesi and P. cynomolgi. He ended his talk by mentioning the future hopes for malaria elimination by new drugs and insecticides discovery, and implementations of the genetically modified mosquito population.

Speaker’s Background

Professor Georges Snounou has been appointed as Research Director of Infectious Disease Models for Innovative Therapies (IDMIT) at Université Pierre et Marie Curie, CIMI-Paris, France since 1st January 2008. He is also the Head Unit of Comparative Parasitology and Experimental Models (USM 307), at the National Museum of Natural History, Paris, France from April 2004 until April 2008. Professor Georges has been dedicated to the research of Plasmodium protozoan parasites and the causative agents of malaria since 1984. His interest in these pathogens does not only rest on their major impact on Public Health, but also because they offer a quintessential model for fundamental biological studies.

Professor Georges obtained his PhD in Molecular Biology from University of London in 1984. He honed his molecular biology skills from 1984 to 2004 as a postdoctoral research fellow at the National Institute of Medical Research, Division of Parasitology, London, United Kingdom (1984 to 1994), Imperial College London, United Kingdom (1994 to 1999), and Institut Pasteur, Department of Parasitology, Paris, France (2000 to 2004). His research focuses on the understanding of the malaria infection from an epidemiological, immunological, clinical and biological perspective. He has devised tools and approaches that have been widely adopted by the malaria research community and now constitute a basis for the molecular epidemiological studies conducted on malaria. Professor Georges Snounou has authored over 300 peer-reviewed articles in international journals and he actively pursues the research that includes four broad topics: the genetic diversity of Plasmodium species, biology and immunology of the hepatic stage of the parasite, pathogenesis of cerebral malaria, and molecular characterization of Plasmodium species in higher primates.

Asian Surgical Network Symposium, Singapore
by Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong

The Asian Surgical Network Symposium was held in Singapore from 20th-21st February 2023, bringing together 46 surgical leaders and representatives from 17 institutions across Asia to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on surgical systems. The Symposium marked the progression of a global health research partnership spanning nine countries in Asia, aiming to understand the collateral impact of COVID-19 on surgical systems in the region.

The event was jointly organised by the Health Services Research Centre, SingHealth International Collaboration Office, and SingHealth Duke-NUS Global Health Institute, and was graced by Professor Kenneth Kwek, Deputy Group CEO, Innovation & Informatics, SingHealth, and CEO of the Singapore General Hospital. The symposium's Chairpersons, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Tan Hiang Khoon, Group Director, ICO and Director, SDGHI, and Professor Pierce Chow, Academic Vice Chair, Research, Surgery Academic Clinical Programme, SingHealth, led the event.

On the first day of the Symposium, clinical leaders shared insights on the management of COVID-19 and its impact on health systems from four workstreams. These included The Impact of COVID-19 on the 3 Bellwether Surgeries, Breast Cancer Surgery During the COVID-19 Pandemic, The Impact of COVID-19 on Colorectal Cancer in South East Asia, and Surgical Systems Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic.

The Symposium served as an important platform for surgical leaders from across the region to come together and share their experiences in managing the impact of COVID-19 on their healthcare systems. Co-investigators who participated in the COVID-19 IMPACTS study had the opportunity to meet face-to-face for the first time.

The second day of the Symposium focused on addressing other pressing global surgical challenges in the region, going beyond studying the impact of COVID-19 on surgical services. The day consisted of in-depth discussions on how to collaborate to enhance surgical skills, strengthen surgical systems, drive surgical innovation, and facilitate patient empowerment.

The Symposium provided multiple opportunities for surgical leaders to discuss the future direction of collaboration and working together in global surgery initiatives. The event brought together experts from various fields of surgery, including breast surgery, colorectal surgery, and surgical systems response. The Faculty of Medicine team led by the Dean, Professor Dr. April Camilla Roslani, Deputy Dean, Professor Dr. Sanjay Rampal Lekhraj Rampal, and consultant Breast Surgeon, Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong, joined the symposium in their efforts to advance global initiatives on Workstreams 1, 2, 3, and 4.

The Symposium showcased the research work being done by the SingHealth Duke-NUS Global Health Institute and their partners in understanding the impact of COVID-19 on surgical systems. While collaborating for the past few years, communication had been by remote means due to travel restrictions brought on by the pandemic. The Symposium was a highly anticipated event, and it offered a full programme of in-depth panels, workgroups, and presentations. The event provided an opportunity for surgical leaders to learn from one another and develop strategies for overcoming challenges posed by the pandemic.

The Symposium was not just about discussing the impact of COVID-19 on surgical services, but it also highlighted the need to develop and strengthen surgical systems, skills, innovation, and patient empowerment. Participants shared their experiences and knowledge in handling the challenges of the pandemic and discussed possible solutions for the future. The Symposium provided an excellent opportunity to network and build relationships with fellow surgical leaders in the region. Collaborations and knowledge-sharing were at the forefront of the event, which bodes well for the future of global surgical initiatives.

In a nutshell, the Asian Surgical Network Symposium was a significant event that brought together surgical leaders from across Asia to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on surgical systems. The Symposium provided an opportunity for collaboration and knowledge-sharing, and it showcased the research work being done by the SingHealth Duke-NUS Global Health Institute and their partners. The Symposium's focus on addressing pressing global surgical challenges in the region demonstrated the commitment of surgical leaders to advancing the field and improving patient outcomes.

Undocumented Children in Malaysia and Ethics of Equitable Healthcare
by the Medical Humanities and Ethics Unit


The Clinical Ethics Grand Round Series is a bimonthly event organized by the Medical Humanities and Ethics Unit (MedHEU) at the Faculty of Medicine, held on the last Thursday of the month from 1:00 pm to 2:00 pm. The series kicked off in 2023 with a session focused on the ethical complexities and issues faced by clinicians providing healthcare to undocumented children in Malaysia.

Undocumented children often lack access to health insurance and social welfare programs, making it difficult for them to obtain essential health services. They may also struggle to attend school or access other educational opportunities, which can have long-term effects on their prospects. Clinicians have a moral obligation to provide care to all patients, including undocumented children, but the legal and healthcare systems can create challenges.

This session, moderated by Dr. Chong Lee Ai, Consultant Paediatric Palliative Care at UMMC, began with a narrative case presentation by Dr. Sheila Gopal Krishnan, Head of the Pediatrics Department at Hospital Seri Manjung. Other experts, including Professor Dr. Mary Joseph Marret, Consultant Pediatrician at UMMC, and Ms. Sharmila Sekaran, Chairperson of the Voice of the Children, joined in to discuss the challenges and propose ways to provide compassionate, ethical, and culturally appropriate care that respects the fundamental human rights of undocumented children. About 40 participants from a diverse background of professional affiliations attended the webinar and contributed towards a meaningful and fruitful discussion.

The Clinical Ethics Grand Rounds Series is a Continuing Medical Education (CME) initiative that features a variety of clinical ethics topics from a diverse group of esteemed speakers. It aims to help healthcare professionals keep up with the latest advances in medicine while guiding them through everyday ethical dilemmas. The series provides a forum for participants to learn how to resolve cases based on the best ethical practices. All healthcare professionals, including physicians, clinicians, biomedical researchers, nurses, ethicists, philosophers, and students, are welcome to attend. Those interested in presenting at future sessions can contact MedHEU by emailing medheu@um.edu.my.

Visit by the Defence Services Medical Academy, The Republic of the Union of Myanmar

On 24th February 2023, the Faculty of Medicine hosted a visit by delegates from the Defence Services Medical Academy, The Republic of the Union of Myanmar. Professor Dr. Saw Aik and Professor Dr. Sanjay Rampal Lekhraj Rampal were the hosts where the representatives were given a briefing of the teaching and research conducted as well as a tour of the facilities around the faculty.

Majlis Amanat Dekan Tahun 2023

Professor Dr. April Camilla Roslani, Dean of Faculty of Medicine, presented her annual Majlis Amanat Dekan Tahun 2023 on 28th February 2023 to the Faculty both physically at the Auditorium TJ Danaraj, as well as virtually on YouTube. Professor Dr. April began her presentation by sharing the Universiti Malaya Transformation Plan 2021-2030 and the nine focus areas of the UM-Health project. The goal of the UM Health Ecosystem is to facilitate and encourage optimal education, research and clinical outcomes. It is envisioned to enhance community wellbeing by delivering efficient, comprehensive and patient-centred clinical care; nurturing and developing future-ready graduates by offering high quality educational programmes; and develop and share innovative solutions for the world’s healthcare challenges.

In order to create the foundation of this future eco-system, the ecosystem shall provide a platform for UM collaborations, share public and private facilities, extend partner networks, develop ventures and specialty centres, and expand across satellites.

Key Features of the Future UM Health include:

  1. Platform for UM Collaboration
  2. Shared Public & Private Facilities
  3. Extensive Partner Networks
  4. Ventures & Specialty Centres
  5. Expansion Across Satellites to Support Hub Activities

The UM Health Programme (UMHP), an initiative consisting of five entities (Universiti Malaya Medical Centre, Faculty of Medicine, Faculty of Dentistry, Faculty of Pharmacy and UM Specialist Centre), had initiated Phase 3 of its planning via the UMHP 3 Feet Plan Workshop with the respective Head Entities, held on 30th August 2022 at the Pullman Hotel, Bangsar. The objective of this workshop was to consolidate all identified initiatives and to finalize the 3 Feet Plan. From this workshop, the team had identified 35 Immediate Term initiatives to be included in the concept paper for approval by the Universiti Malaya Higher Management Council (UMHMC). These initiatives included Telemedicine, UM Health Talent – Upskilling & Reskilling, Culture Transformation, Key Critical Behaviour, Grant Allocation, Philanthropy and Budget 2023.

Professor Dr. April also revisited the four thrusts of the FOM Strategic Plan 2021-2025, which are People & Empowerment, Academic Excellence, Impactful Global Research and Infrastructure & Financial Sustainability. From these four thrusts, twelve goals and strategies were devised to address: Sustainable Leadership, Talent Management, Culture and Legacy, High-Value Academic Programmes, Outstanding Teaching & Learning Experience, Student Empowerment, Skilled & Ethical Researchers, Interdisciplinary Research Partnership, Equitable Research Ecosystem, Efficient Fund Management, Sustainable Income Generation, and Enhanced Facility & Space Utilisation.

A summary of all Faculty events, infrastructure upgrades, mental health initiatives, results of the Employee Satisfaction and Happiness Survey 2022, and achievements by the Faculty, Departments as well as Academic Staff and students in 2022 were also presented. Moving forward, she reported on the planning phase of the updated Universiti Malaya Medical Programme (UMMP), which aims to address the bottleneck between the number of UMMP graduates with availability of permanent posts for medical officers, and the evolving medical community demands for multidisciplinary perspectives.

by Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong

The Regional Intraoperative radiation therapy (IORT) Symposium 2022 was a two-day event held on December 1st and 2nd. The theme of the symposium was "A venture into a multidisciplinary application," and it was chaired by Dr. Teoh Li Ying and advised by Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong from the Breast Surgery Unit, Department of Surgery, UM, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Khong Tak Loon, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Yoong Book Koon, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Rozita Abdul Malik, and Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vairavan Narayanan.

The symposium was organized by the UM Faculty of Medicine, with co-organizers including the Breast Chapter College of Surgeons, Academy of Medicine Malaysia, Malaysian Oncological Society (MOS), Malaysian Association of Medical Physics (MAMP), Malaysian Nursing Association (MNA), Malaysian Hepato-Pancreato-Biliary Surgeons Society (MyHPB), and the Neurosurgical Association of Malaysia (NAM).

The first day of the symposium began with a welcome reception, followed by opening remarks from Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong, the main advisor of the event. The Deputy Dean of Faculty of Medicine, UM, Professor Dr. Ong Teng Aik, delivered the officiating speech. The first plenary session of the day focused on IORT in colorectal cancer. Professor Dr. William Small from Loyola University, Chicago, USA, discussed the challenges of IORT in rectal carcinoma, followed by Dr. Sandya Subramaniam from the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital, who gave an overview of the outcomes of IORT among rectal cancer patients in Malaysia based on institutional experience.

The second plenary session of the day focused on IORT in pancreatic cancer. Professor William Small also discussed the role of IORT in the treatment of pancreatic cancer, followed by a keynote lecture by Professor Dr. Jayant S Vaidya from University College London, UK, on TARGIT-A IORT for low-risk early breast cancer. Professor JS. Park from South Korea presented on Intraoperative Radiotherapy for Resectable Pancreatic Cancer, followed by Professor William Small's discussion on IORT in the treatment of head and neck cancer.

The third plenary session of the day focused on IORT in breast surgery. Professor Yip Cheng Har from the Subang Jaya Medical Centre discussed the evolution of Accelerated Partial Breast Irradiation (APBI) in breast cancer. Dr. P. Lara gave a virtual presentation on the radioimmunological basis for IORT in breast cancer. Professor Dr. Jayant S Vaidya gave a virtual lecture on the role of IORT in high-risk early breast cancer, followed by Professor William Small's discussion on the targeted IORT tumor bed boost during BCS after neoadjuvant chemotherapy. Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong gave an update on the multicentre study on the evidence of IORT application among Malaysians.

The second day of the symposium featured a plenary live surgery session for breast IORT in the operating theater. Assoc. Prof. Dr. See Mee Hoong led the live surgery in the Breast OT at Menara Selatan, OT3. Participants could observe the live surgery and learn the steps to set up IORT services.

The concurrent session on the second day focused on IORT in neurosurgery. Professor Dr. Frank Giordano with Assoc. Prof. Dr. Vairavan discussed IORT in brain metastases, rationale, and initial results. He also presented on IORT in primary GBM-INTRAGO and the introduction to ZEISS CONVIVO In-Vivo Pathology Suite ZEISS. The successful Neuro IORT program and Kypho-IORT for localized spine metastases was also discussed.

In a nutshell, the Regional IORT Symposium 2022 was a highly successful event that brought together experts in the field of intraoperative radiotherapy from across the Asia Pacific region and beyond. The theme of the symposium, "A venture into a multidisciplinary application," was well-chosen, as it highlighted the diverse range of applications for IORT and the many different specialties that can benefit from this innovative technique.

Over the course of two days, attendees were treated to a rich and varied program that included plenary sessions, live surgeries, and concurrent sessions covering a wide range of topics related to IORT. The speakers were all highly knowledgeable and engaging, and the discussions were lively and informative.

The symposium provided an excellent opportunity for attendees to learn from each other and to share their own experiences and insights. It also served as a valuable platform for networking and collaboration, which will no doubt lead to many exciting new developments in the field of IORT in the years to come.

Overall, the Regional IORT Symposium 2022 was a resounding success, and its organizers and Zeiss as the main sponsor should be commended for their hard work and dedication in bringing together such a high-quality event. We look forward to seeing what the future holds for the field of IORT and to attending future symposia and conferences.

Last Update: 12/05/2023