S R E Sayampanathan

Master (2016-2018)
Academy of Medicine, Singapore



8 August 2016

Dear Fellow Academicians


On behalf of AMS Council and Staff, I would like to wish one and all a Happy National Day 2016.  Our nation, Singapore, will be 51 years old tomorrow.


The Academy, established in 17 July 1957, has been contributing to the healthcare scene years before our nation gained independence.   Since establishment, AMS’ vision and mission has been to establish and conduct formal post-graduate training and certify specialists:-

To be the leading institution for postgraduate medical education and professional development of medical specialists in the region.

Advancing the art and science of medicine through:-

(a) Undergraduate, graduate and postgraduate medical education;
(b) Maintenance of high standards of competency and ethical integrity through continuous professional development; and
(c) Generation and dissemination of information and knowledge to the public on matters related to health.

Over the past six decades, the Councils of the Academy have strived to maintain these core missions and objectives.  The present Council remains committed to advance this pursuit. 

In my last message, I discussed the formation and activities of the Office of Professional Affairs.  I have received feedbacks that many did not realise AMS has been undertaking weighty professional work.  The Deanery is the other branch of the Academy that has been managing and coordinating many educational and training activities and is positioned to do even more.



A. The AMS Deanery

The Academy took about a year to plan the Deanery.  Many stakeholders, including MOH, were consulted before the Deanery’s purpose and structure were finalised.  The Deanery will oversee all AMS’ educational and training related activities, including the CPD-MOC initiatives. JCST was left as a separate Standing Committee to avoid conflict of interest.

Members of the Deanery are appointed by the Academy Council for a specific tenure to ensure the continuity and sustainability of AMS educational goals and initiatives.


(1) Assessment Committee

One of the key programmes being managed under the Assessment Committee is the In-Training Examination (ITE).  Appointed by MOH, AMS administers a total of 23 ITEs for Residency Programmes in Singapore.  The purpose of ITE is to provide annual self-assessment to residents, facilitate programme directors to evaluate their programmes and identify areas in which residents need extra assistance.

(2) Continuing Professional Development (CPD) & Maintenance of Competencies (MOC) Committee

The Academy’s Standing Committee on Continuing Professional Development (CPD) has been around since CME was made compulsory for all doctors in 2003.  Recognising the important role AMS plays in the lifelong learning of specialists, AMS has always been represented on the Continuing Medical Education Coordinating Committee (CMECC) of Singapore Medical Council (SMC). 

AMS will continue to motivate and support specialists stay current in an increasingly complex practice environment, through continuing learning, assessment and practice improvement activities. We are committed to contribute significantly to maintenance of competencies (MOC) of the specialties recognised by the Specialist Accreditation Board (SAB).  Family Medicine and Dental Specialties will be administered by the College of Family Physicians Singapore (CFPS) and the College of Dental Surgeons Singapore (CDSS) respectively.

(3) Staff Registrar Scheme (SRS) and Advance Diploma Programmes

The Advance Diploma Programmes Committee to-date has a total of 27 Staff Registrar Scheme (SRS) Diploma programmes approved by SMC.  Since its inception in 2007, 290 candidates have enrolled in the programme.  To-date, 150 of them have successfully graduated.  The programme enables doctors who are not specialists to receive structured training and gain competency in providing registrar level of medical service in public healthcare institutions especially in critical areas or unpopular specialties with manpower shortage.


(4) Master of Health Profesions Education (MPHE) Committees

The Master of Health Professions Education (MPHE) is also nested under the Deanery.  The programme offered in joint collaboration with Maastricht University School of Health Professions is firmly rooted in educational theory and is designed to ensure those who train healthcare professionals create effective educational programmes that result in high quality health services. 

(5) AMS Fellowship Training Programmes

The Academy’s Fellowship Training Programme is an initiative developed several years ago.  In May 2014, AMS signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Brunei’s Ministry of Health to conduct Advanced Speciality Training (AST) for Bruneian doctors.  The standards of the Academy’s AST programme and exit examinations will be benchmarked to that of our Residency Training Programmes.  Upon satisfactory completion of the AST programme, the Bruneian doctors will be awarded FAMS (International).  The qualification, although not registerable with SAB in Singapore, will allow the Bruneian doctors to be registered as specialist in Brunei. 


The first 3 Brunei doctors, whose applications have been successfully approved by Committees in both Brunei and Singapore, will commence their training in Rheumatology, Medical Oncology and Internal Medicine in due course.

(6) Annals of the Academy of Medicine, Singapore

The Annals is an internationally recognized peer review publication of the Academy.    It serves an important avenue for our younger colleagues to publish papers of high standards.  Referenced in Index Medicus, the Annals has an impact factor of 1.15.



B. Deanery Advisory Board 


The Deanery Advisory Board is set up by the Academy Council to provide strategic advice and guidance to the Dean and the leadership of Deanery Academic Board.  The Board, whose term is 3 years, comprises of Past Masters of the Academy, senior representatives from MOH, DGMS and the three medical schools.


C. Deanery Academic Board


The Deanery Academic Board, led by the Dean, Vice-Dean and Chairman and Directors of all educational committees and programmes, shall plan, implement and monitor all educational activities of AMS.  Term of the Academic Board is 5 years.


D. Appointment of Dr Lim Shih Hui as Dean of AMS Deanery


On behalf of the Academy Council, I am pleased to announce the appointment of Dr Lim Shih Hui as Dean of AMS Deanery.

The search for AMS Dean started last September.  A Search Committee was convened to evaluate prospective candidates and to short list and recommend the best qualified candidate to helm this important and strategic position for a term of 5 years.  The Search Committee identified Dr Lim Shih Hui.

The Deanery Advisory Board endorsed the nomination of Dr Lim Shih Hui in July.  On 1 August, the Academy Council approved the appointment of Dr Lim Shin Hui as the inaugural Dean.


E. Concluding Remark 


It has been a hectic first week of August.  With the appointment of the Dean and formalization of the Deanery Advisory and Academic Boards, we anticipate the Academy will get busier in the months ahead reviewing training strategies and developing more educational programmes. I will continue to keep our Fellow Academicians informed, so that you may contribute or participate in the activities of the Academy.






Best Wishes

Dr S R E Sayampanathan
Email: master@ams.edu.sg


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