Letters to the Editor
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"Setting and Maintaining the Standard of the SMA News"
Taking over as the position of Editor of SMA News from a "giant" like A/Prof Goh Lee Gan is no mean feat. The new editorial team must strive to maintain the high standard he has set over the past 15 years at the helm of the official newsletter for the SMA. The contents of the SMA News will revolve around the following:
1. Medical Information and News in Singapore Section
The SMA News will continue to be the main instrument to keep our members informed of up- to-date and vital healthcare-related information in Singapore. This column will be titled "Medical News" and will range from coverage of key healthcare- related events for the month to important policy decisions from the Ministry of Health.
2. SMA Activities and Policies Section
Another major area for the SMA News is the dissemination and relaying of important events and activities, which the SMA has organised. "SMA Events" will consist of a short summary of the activities with plenty of photograph coverage. "Upcoming Activities" will highlight major SMA events for the coming months. "News from Council" and "From the Ethics File" will focus on major policy decisions made during the monthly Council meetings and Ethics Committee meetings respectively. The purpose is to share with the members the views of the Council and Committees and, to stimulate feedback and discussion.
3. Members Section
Contributions to this section will come mainly from our members. Columns which will be included are "Garfield", "MOs Column", "Medical Students Column" and "Materia-Non-Medica". "Members Forum" will publish letters and emails from SMA members regarding any issue or topic of interest.
Our vision for the 21st Century developing our own SMA21
As the SMA moves into the 21st Century, it may be timely to reflect and rethink our mission and challenges ahead. The directions for the coming Council are highlighted in this issue of SMA News. But let us look beyond this Council or the next. Let us open our minds to new ideas. The Singapore 21 Committee recently highlighted some dilemmas and challenges for Singaporeans in the coming millennium. The SMA should have its own SMA21 vision. What are the problems and issues we face as an organisation in the new millennium? What are the new needs and aspirations of our members? What will our profession be like in the coming years? How will medicine be practiced and how will patients be different? I encourage every member to share his or her ideas and views on this matter.
Every doctor matters
The SMA is your organisation. You decide its
direction and its mission. I have been asked often by non-members and members alike,
"What does the SMA do for me?" The answer is "What do you want us to do for
you?" Let us know! Tell us your needs and we will try to help you within the capacity
and framework of this organisation. Your ideas, participation and involvement in this
organisation are crucial to where we direct and focus our resources to meet your needs.
Let us know your vision for SMA in the coming years, how we should evolve and where we
should go. The SMA membership is evolving. There are many different "groups"
within the SMA membership, each with its own needs. The aspirations and needs of our
junior doctors are necessarily different from those of our senior members of the
profession. As are the needs of public sector versus private sector doctors or specialists
versus general practitioners. Microsoft, the giant software company in the US, has a
catchy slogan in its advertisement which is relevant, "Where do you want to go
today?" Let us know where you want SMA to go today.
DR WONG TIEN YIN