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About HKCFP > President’s Message

April 2015

March has been a busy month for the College. The Cross Strait Family Medicine Conference and Wonca Asia Pacific Regional Conference happened simultaneously in Taipei in early March.

On the WONCA side, Dr. Donald Li was the Plenary speaker on the topic "Another Service to Be Provided by Family Doctors – When Doctors Voice Advocacy: A Strategy for Non-Communicable Disease Control”. The Symposium on "Enhanced Management of Type 2 Diabetes in Primary Care: Innovations in Models of Care" was provided by Prof Doris Young and Dr. Fu Sau Nga. The Symposium on "Effectiveness of a Large Community-based Patient Empowerment Program for Chinese Patients with Diabetes Mellitus" was given by Dr. William Wong. Oral Presentations were delivered by Dr. Chiang Lap Kin, Dr. Catherine Chen and Dr. Cheung Sze Man. There were numerous poster presentations by Hong Kong. Dr. Chiang Lap Kin was one of the awardees of the Taiwan Family Medicine Research Award, 2015. Well done Ah Chiang!

On the Cross Strait Conference side, Dr. William Wong spoke on 亞洲太平洋地區基層醫療研究挑戰 and I delivered the plenary speech on 香港家庭醫師繼續教育 與終身學習的發展與挑戰. Thank you to Dr. Mark Chan as my moderator who gave me the adrenaline pump to speak in Mandarin and also to Miss Erica So as my last minute Mandarin tutor. Overall the Hong Kong delegates had a strong presence and I congratulate everyone for their contribution.

I must stress the importance of CME/ CPD as a lifelong commitment of all primary care doctors. At the moment, not all Hong Kong doctors require mandatory CME activities and our overseas counterparts find it difficult to realise this. The exponential increase in medical knowledge will dwarf the amount we learnt years ago. I had quoted an example regarding gout during my talk in Taipei. Allopurinol is one of the most common long term medications we prescribe for gout prophylaxis. However it is also one of the most common drugs that caused Stevens-Johnson Syndrome which can be life threatening. Back in 2008, a strong association between HLA-B 5801 allele and allopurinol-induced Stevens-Johnson Syndrome in Thai and Han populations was suggested. This information took a few years before it filtered through to primary care doctors in Hong Kong at CME activities in 2013. If one prescribes allopurinol without checking the HLA- B 5801 status, any cutaneous manifestation will likely end up in a medical legal issue!

Prof Dame Sally Davies, the Chief Medical Officer of England was invited by the Hong Kong Academy of Medicine and the Department of Health to speak on "The Inconvenient Truth- Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) UK Action and the Keys to Global Success. The truth is there is no new class of antibiotics discovered since 1987. The other horrible truth is that by 2050 AMR will happen to most microbes. I was involved in the roundtable panel discussion with Prof Davies and the prominent Microbiologists in Hong Kong. Primary Care doctors are under enormous pressure from patients to prescribe antibiotics as the magic pill to cure all diseases. We are at the forefront to fight the AMR battle and I welcome the Department of Health to organise a team approach in issuing appropriate and responsible guidelines.

Dr. Angus M W CHAN