LIM Shih Hui

Master (2012-2016)
Academy of Medicine, Singapore



28 February 2013


Dear Fellow Academicians


I hope you had a wonderful start in 2013.  The Academy welcomed the New Year on a busy note as 2013 promises to be a year of challenges entwined with opportunities. 


In January, the Executive Committee of the Academy Council promptly convened an interim performance review of the Strategic Plan 2012-2014.  Although much progress has been made in 2012 with several key initiatives bearing fruits in the early months of 2013, we still have a lot of work ahead to be accomplished.


1. FAMS Membership Enrolment


Particularly encouraging to note, as we crossed into the New Year, is strong membership enrolment continues to sustain.  In just over two months, the Academy Council has approved a total of 43 new membership applications.  Growing the fellowship remains an important priority as mounting healthcare concerns and issues over professional standards continue to challenge our profession.  The Academy needs strong representation to be able to speak up for our interests and advocate for our profession.


2. Formation of the Chapter of Clinician Educators


In January, an interest group of clinician educators, led by Dr Erle Lim, met under the auspices of the Academy.  Discussion centred on the prospect of forming a Chapter of Clinician Educators.  Purpose and roles of the proposed Chapter were keenly deliberated.  Against the setting of changing practice and academic environment, the group concurred there is a need to bring together clinicians across specialties to embrace advocacy for medical education and also to provide formal training and professional development for clinician teachers.  I shared with the interest group that the Academy is in discussion with the Royal College of Physicians (London) to offer locally postgraduate certificate and diploma programmes leading to Masters in Medical Education.  The target agreed is to table the formation of the Chapter of Clinician Educators at the upcoming Annual General Meeting of the Academy slated for 15 June.


3. Inauguration of the College of Public Health and Occupational Physicians


The Academy welcomed the inauguration of the College of Public Health and Occupational Physicians (CPHOP) on 1 February, which marked an important milestone in the Academy’s constitution.  The newly formed College began as a Chapter under the Academy in 1980.  From twelve founding members then, the Chapter has matured to a College with 106 Fellows today. 


It was a privilege to grace the Inaugural General Meeting and to witness the signing of a collaborative Memorandum of Understanding between the College of Public Health and Occupational Physicians and Faculty of Public Health of the Royal Colleges of Physicians, United Kingdom.  In unveiling the College roadmap and priorities, Dr Eugene Shum, the College President, along with his Council members, elaborated on the framework for cooperation with the UK Faculty of Public Health.  The charter is to collaborate on a broad range of public health areas which include health improvement, improving services and health protection for mutual benefit and shared priorities.  Key priorities identified include continuing professional development for public health specialists and enhancing public health training.



The collaborative agreement also received support from the British High Commission which committed to the College to fund a team of public health specialists to travel to Singapore in 2013.  The support clearly will enhance the 8th Public Health and Occupational Medicine Conference on “Advancing the Health of Populations” which will be held on 29-30 August 2013.   Prof Lindsey Davies, President of the UK Faculty of Public Health, who was at hand to ratify the collaborative agreement, capped the evening with an edifying and candid account on “Public Health Systems: What Works and Why”.  


My heartiest congratulations to the College President and his Council for bringing to bear the vision, passion and labour of their seniors.  We look to your team of leaders to raise the College to greater heights in the coming years.


4. Inauguration of the Chapter of Clinician Scientists


The Academy achieved another milestone in the same month with the inauguration of the Chapter of Clinician Scientists.   The Chapter Chairman, Dr Tan Eng King and the Chapter Board went to work promptly after the Academy AGM approved the motion to form the Chapter of Clinician Scientists.  


At the inaugural meeting, Fellow Clinician Scientists in attendance weighed in on the Chapter’s leadership and advocacy role, extending that the Chapter needs to be a voice for the Clinician Scientist residents and also help Clinician Scientists gain recognition, support and funding for the pursuit of clinical research.  Immediate priorities were discussed and agreed for implementation: 1) to generate publicity and awareness; 2) to address the problems and barriers in Clinician Scientist residency programme/track; and 3) to garner support from academic and research organisations. 


The Chapter now has a membership of 32 Fellows and it invites eligible Fellows to get in touch with the Membership Department to find out how to join the Chapter to support and advance the Clinician Scientists’ pursuits.


5. Call for Nomination for Distinguished Academician, Visiting Academician, and Visiting Lecturer


This week, call for nomination for Distinguished Academician, Visiting Academician and Visiting Lecturer was circulated to all Colleges and Chapters.  The lectureships’ intent is to promote the advancement of medicine and it comes with various levels of support.  The Council of the Academy will consider the award on the recommendation of the College and/or Chapter.  Therefore, I urge you to engage your College/Chapter to draw on the lectureship endowment to benefit and advance your specialty.


6. Travel Assistance for Fellows of the Academy of Medicine, Singapore


On the same note, I would like to remind all Fellows that the Academy has a Travel Assistance scheme where you can apply for financial support to attend overseas conference.  The scheme, endowed by the Academy’s Common Fund for Advancement of Medicine, is open to active Fellows who have been with the Academy for at least 3 years and in good standing with their subscription.


7. Induction Comitia 2013 and 21st Gordon Arthur Ransome Oration


There are two important developments for this year’s Induction Comitia that I am most pleased to update:-


  • Singapore’s President Dr Tony Tan Keng Yam, Patron and Honorary Fellow of the Academy, has accepted our invitation to grace the Induction Comitia 2013 as Guest-of-Honour.


  • Mr Tharman Shanmugaratnam, Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance, has also accepted our invitation to deliver the 21st Gordon Arthur Ransome Oration.


The Induction Comitia will be held on Friday, 23 August 2013 at the Grand Copthorne Waterfront.  Look out to receive the invitation and programme details in due course.


8. Lunar New Year Celebration Dinner in Appreciation of Fellows


The Academy Council ushered in the Lunar New Year with a rousing celebratory dinner at its office premise on 20 February.  This year, the celebration is dedicated to appreciate Fellows who serve and contribute as member of the Academy’s Standing Committees, and they were joined by College Presidents, Chapter Chairmen, and Past Masters.  As a token of appreciation for their contribution, they were each presented with a limited edition of the Academy’s cash card.


The festive occasion also served as a cordial setting for Fellows from different specialties to gather, network and socialise.  In serving the interests of our respective specialties, it is inevitable diverse opinions will arise.



In the preamble to the auspicious tossing of Lo Hei Yu Sheng, I shared my aspiration for the Academy:  As the professional body of medical and dental specialists, the Academy must strive for unity in diversity.


Best Wishes


Dr LIM Shih Hui


Academy of Medicine, Singapore


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