Thursday, December 30, 2010

Calling for Abstract Submission on 3rd MIMSC 2011 at Historical City Malacca

The SMMAMS's very own medical student conference, the 3rd Malaysian International Medical Student Conference (MIMSC) 2011 is going to be held from 2nd to 5th June 2011, at the Historical City of Malacca.

The 3rd MIMSC 2011 is hosted and organized by Melaka-Manipal Medical College, in collaboration with Society of MMA Medical Students.

The theme for the previous MIMSC was "Gastroenterology and Nutrition". The theme for 3rd MIMSC 2011 will be "Trauma Medicine". Trauma management, which is an essential and important knowledge for all doctors, are seldom emphasized in medical schools. Exposure to Trauma management is limited until you start practicing medicine in the hospital. So, Trauma Medicine has been chosen as the theme for the coming conference, to further expose the students on the recent development and advances in Trauma care.
Registration will be opened soon on January 2011.
Details of the conference (e.g. program, registration procedure and payment details) will be sent to your university's SMMAMS representative and Student Council. All registration will be done through the representative and council members via ONLINE. Details will be announced on the coming January 2011.
International students
can Register ONLINE via our official website (to be announced later), or you can directly email us on
General Rules for Scientific Presentation:
1. Universities are entitled to send as many as possible participants for the competition. Members may be from any local, private or international medical institution.
2. Members who participate should have registered for the conference as delegates and dully paid the conference fee as we are not charging a seperate participation fee for the competition.
3. There will be 2 separate competitions held - Poster Presentation and Oral Presentation.
4. Participant is only allowed to participate in either ONE presentation, NOT BOTH.
5. All participant will be receiving certificate of participation and prizes are awarded for the top 3 winners each for both poster and oral presentation selected by the panel of judges. Judges' decisions are final.
6. Criteria for selection will be based on the following criteria (subject to changes):
- Relevance of the topic
- Method of Research
- Creativity of the poster design
- Presentation performance during oral rounds.
7. Members should email the abstract to the Scientific Committee, MIMSC 2011 by 1st May 2011. You may call the Scientific Committee for further clarifications.
*Rules and Regulations above are subjected to change.
  • All abstract should be submitted in English. Explained abbreviations may be used.
  • All authors are required to send their abstracts ONLINE. Please include your details such as your name, contact number, year of study, and your medical institution.
  • Any late of inappropriately formatted submission will be rejected.
  • Submission must be saved in Microsoft Word document format.
  • Email will be sent to selected participants for the competition. Results for selection of your abstract will be notified via email and it will be informed to your head of delegate.
  • The deadline for submission of abstract is 1st May 2011. (subject to changes)
  • Any abstract received after the dateline will be ONLY considered if the any entries received earlier were unable to participate.
For further clarifications on Scientific Presentation Competition and Abstract Submission, please do not hesitate to contact the following persons:

***Details regarding the MIMSC 2011 will be released soon in our official conference website, from January 2011 till June 2011. Make sure you had bookmarked and stay tuned with us !!!

Happy New Year 2011 Everyone!

To Every Malaysian medical students, who is studying locally or studying abroad

Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each New Year find you a better man. - Benjamin Franklin

Many things had happened in year 2010, let it be happy, sad, angry, disappointment, ups and downs, everything is going to be over in one more day! Let the sad thing go away and welcome to new fresh year 2011.
May the dawning of this New Year, fill your heart with new hopes, open up new horizons and bring for you promises of brighter tomorrows. May you have a great New Year.

Best wishes from,
Justin Lee (SMMAMS President)
and his Committee 2010-2011

A Gift of life in Emergency: An eBook - "Quick Management GUide in Emergency Medicine"

Dear fellow colleagues,

One of our friend, Mr. Chee Yong Chuan from Monash University Malaysia recently send me an email about an eBook on Emergency Medicine, authored by Dr. Lee Say Fat (Consultant Obsterician and Gynaecologist) and Dr. Wong Yin Onn (MUM Clinical Associate Professor of Internal Medicine).
The eBook titled "Quick Management Guide in Emergency Medicine" can be downloaded here. The eBook can be saved into your PDA or handphone for easy and immediate access.
~Knowledge is best gained by sharing!~
Vincent Khor
SMMAMS Webmaster

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

The Voices of Strength

[SMMAMS Chairman message, in Facebook group : "Voices of our Hearts -Malaysian Medical Students"]

Dear all,
As we can see, through this short ongoing discussion in our Facebook group, there are disparities regarding the approach towards our current issue.
We have thoughts ranging from : "send in a memorandum or call for a press conference" to "isn't it kind of presumptuous of us to send suggestions to solve the problem to mma or moh, as if we know best?".
This is good, as having members who are conservatives and members who are liberals will help steer the direction of our approach to moderation, not to go too conservative, nor too liberal in our approach.
The ultimate goal of SMMAMS, is to be an advocate for medical students in Malaysia. At the same time, we are a part of MMA, and as medical students, we are the apprentice of our doctors, those who had gone before us, and hence, our actions shall not be against what our doctors, our teachers, belief.

In this situation, MMA and SMMAMS are in sync. MMA has articles in the Berita, and has tried to highlight this situation countless of times through annual dinners with some people with power. The SMMAMS EXCO has attended 2 of such dinners.
In our country, the level of support an association has is gauged simply by the number of members that the association has. An association who claims to be THE association for ALL the XYZ in Malaysia, will be challenged by the question "So, how many members do you have in your association?".
It is the same for SMMAMS. There are no university rules that forbid medical students to join the MMA, as far as I know.
In our 2009 student membership report, we have close to 2,000 members. 786 are from Melaka Manipal, and 630 are from Kursk State. This means that 70% of our student members are from just 2 universities. Out of the other 26 medical schools (in 2009), some with 2 intakes per year, others with close to 200 students per intake, we only have 584 members.
Do number of members matter for an association? Yes it does. It is the only solid prove an association has to be claiming what it claims.
SMMAMS claims to be the advocate for medical students, and SMMAMS base its claims on the fact that it is currently the only student medical association whose leadership is open to medical students from all universities. We are currently working on getting SMMAMS introduced to medical schools who have a low number of members inside MMA, as well as working on increasing the number of medical student members we have, which, on paper, will be the representation of the strength of our association.
We cannot achieve our goals and objectives without the help from YOU, which I presume to be have a strong spirit of leadership and activism, for the fact that you were introduced into this Facebook group by someone in the group.
SMMAMS is currently formulating a plan to directly link the core committee, with medical societies or student councils in each university. We need student leader volunteers for this project of ours, which may take up to several months, in view of the hectic schedule a medical student has.
In the mean time, I hope that YOU, encourage your fellow medical students, to have activism towards their future. Include discussions on the current health care situation in our country during your normal lunch / dinner with your friends. These will be our baby steps towards our ultimate goal.

Justin Lee
Society of MMA Medical Students

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A Future of Too Many Doctors - A Grave Concern for Medical Students

This note is partly a message to all medical students, SMMAMS members or not, and partly a reply to Jawing’s note: Too many medical graduates - whose fault is it ( which I think is very sincere and brilliant. We are all in the same situation. I believe we have the same concerns about our future. I guess all of you have been aware of the issue now. For those who are not, you can read the front story of the STAR on November 27th:

Many have proposed that we gather all the medical student representatives in our country in an open discussion. It was such a disappointment that we (SMMAMS) actually thought out that exact idea during our last meeting, but in the end we never got the idea across to MMA anyway. I guess ideas are ideas. Anyone can come up with great ideas on a long drive home, but little come out of their cars and actually do something about it.

I don’t usually fall to the noose of pessimism, but let’s start with a reality check. Not to dampen down our spirits, no, not at all. But at least to know what we are dealing with. So let’s face it: It would be a tough ride for us, medical students to change the policy of the government regarding the issue of ‘too much medical graduates’. If you have been reading Berita MMA, MMA’s stance towards this issue is clear. As written in one of the issues, they have ‘grave’ concerns over this matter. The current President, Dr. David Quek clearly states that that the government is producing ‘too much, too fast and too soon’. Berita MMA is the voice of MMA. Obviously it has the momentum to at least catch the attention of policy makers. Someone in the MMA must have at least talked about this issue to the policy makers. But why are they (the policy makers) not listening?

Now that’s the MMA. Now let’s get our attention to another organization, or more appropriately, council, which should have more influence than the MMA: The Malaysian Medical Council (MMC). Someone I know very well is in the Malaysian Medical Council. From my talks with him, MMC has been concerned over this issue for a long, long time. The have predicted that this would happen (Duh, what’s too predict anyway? It’s so easy to see that the way things are going, we’re producing doctors like clone armies in Star Wars. At least clone armies just have to learn how to shoot, not to SAVE LIVES). Surely someone in the MMC is involved with the Ministry of Health, or Ministry of Higher Education. But why have not things changed?

I would like to quote from Jawing’s note:

“Even then, the problem persists. Who is to blame? Why are there not enough groups and individuals giving the government the proper advice?”

I’m sorry but there are enough groups and individuals giving the government proper advice. Not just any groups, but the 2 MOST prominent groups in Malaysia when it comes to healthcare. Still, they are not listening, and nothing has changed.

So why are they not listening?

That’s the question we want to answer. If we were to start out on a campaign that’s the question we must first answer. Before starting on a campaign, we must first seek a strategy that works. A good start is by abandoning strategies that DOESN’T work. As we have seen, using the name of MMA or MMC, getting their influence won’t work. They have been trying, and yet failed. We must be presented as MEDICAL STUDENTS OF ALL MEDICAL SCHOOLS IN MALAYSIA. The strength of SMMAMS is not in it's affiliation with the MMA, its strength lies in its ability to represent all medical students of Malaysia. But for now, we don't really have that strength. We still need support from many more medical schools that have not affiliated with SMMAMS

SMMAMS needs to represent all medical students of Malaysia if we were to embark on a journey of change. Getting more support from medical student bodies will help us gain momentum. How do we go about it? Gathering of medical student leaders? Create groups? Spread newsletters? Direct talks? That’s what we need to discuss. We can discuss in the SMMAMS FB ( ) or the group Voices of Our Heart ( ). We need to know our direction. I can’t give you the idea of solving this problem, my idea is from a single mind. But with the gathering of all your creative minds, I believe we will come to a solution. Everything starts with ideas. The gathering of ideas, when fully formed, fully understood, will show us the path we should head to. It doesn’t matter if you are a leader of your medical school’s student organization or you’re without a title, come join in our discussion. Let’s make a change. We may just be medical students in white coats, but with our efforts together, we will be sharper than the scalpel knife. We can stop this disaster and start saving lives.

Mohd Lutfi Fadil bin Lokman
Vice Chairman, SMMAMS

Too many medical graduates, whose fault is it?

[Source:!/notes/jawing-chunggat/too-many-medical-graduates-whose-fault-is-it/474619314547 ]
''PETALING JAYA: The number of medical housemen undergoing clinical training in most government hospitals has increased and this has given rise to concern that they may not get sufficient experience.

With new medical schools opening up locally and lower fees being offered at new institutions abroad, around 4,000 Malaysian medical students are expected to graduate annually from 350 universities all over the world in the coming years.

Senior Hospital Kuala Lumpur (HKL) consultant physician Datuk Dr S. Jeyaindran said each specialist was supervising four times as many housemen compared to a decade ago.

“Five years ago, one houseman looked after 10 patients in hospital wards at any one time but now it is one to four patients,” said Dr Jeyaindran, who is HKL department of medicine head and national head for medicine at the Health Ministry.

“The concern is that these interns are seeing fewer patients and hence, have fewer opportunities to carry out adequate procedures. In some hospitals, there are more housemen than patients.”'' -THE STAR

This issue has been alarming the medical profession in the recent years now and the realisation towards its potential damage towards medical graduates in the future has slowly gained traction.

By now, many of us has understood that this is a crisis. Medical students, Housemans, Medical Officers, Specialists, Medical Practitioners, and the Health Ministry are all aware that this may come as a problem in the future. Thousands of medical graduates are produced each year, and the number is exponentially increasing. The domino effect of which will lead to a decline in the quality of future doctors due to insufficient training. All this has been established from various newspaper reports, articles and blogs.

However, the bigger issue is - who is at fault and what are we doing to mitigate this potential disaster?

The Health Ministry apparently is aware of the problem and are still approving more and more medical schools to be set up in Malaysia, the recent one would be the Perdana University. Read here-->

And the Government has also resorted to an attempt to mitigate the lack of specialists to train the large hoarde of freshly graduated doctors by employing more foreign medical officers. Read here-->

So we can see that despite acknowledging the issue, the government persists on producing more medical graduates per year without taking into account whether this might jeopardise the quality and standard of care that a medical doctor can provide for our fellow rakyat.

Even then, the problem persists. Who is to blame? Why are there not enough groups and individuals giving the goverment the proper advice?

Society of Malaysian Medical Association Medical Students (SMMAMS) seem to think that it is the medical student's fault for being ignorant and apathetic,

'What do Malaysian medical students feel about this issue? Are you worried? If yes, are you trying or thinking to do something? Or simply post link in Facebook and complain over Facebook? Many of us are still in the delusion that medical doctors are guaranteed a job in the MOH hospital once we graduate. Yes, the guarantee might still apply for graduates till 2015, but this might not apply for graduates after 2015,''

As a medical student, allow me to respond to SMMAMS and allow me to speak on behalf of all other medical students in Malaysia that echoes my views.

I believe SMMAMS represent the medical student body of the entire nation, or at least that is what they claim to be. If this is the case, then how is it possible that the student body responsible of being the voice of the medical students nationwide, pointing fingers at the students for being ignorant of this problem?

It has been evident in various newspaper reports and articles that the overflow of medical graduates will cause a problem. The medical students already know this and they understand the problem. Thus, why is it that SMMAMS not issuing an official statement to admit that they recognise the problem and subsequently forwarding suggestions to the Ministry of Health on what measures can be taken to counter this possible crisis?

What is the role of SMMAMS in this entire charade?

I implore SMMAMS to take the appropriate steps to improve on this issue and perhaps stop pointing fingers. The power is with SMMAMS. An individual medical student like myself cannot change the system. However an organisation like SMMAMS, a student body and sister affiliate to Malaysian Medical Association(MMA), can. SMMAMS is the collective voice of medical students nationwide. The power is with them, and many of us believe that SMMAMS must speak up!!! We support you and the ball is now in your court.

Jawing Ak. Chunggat
4th Year Medical Student