MediCine

 

NUS YONG LOO LIN SCHOOL OF MEDICINE

 


 

Issue 31 / August 2019

FEATURE ARTICLE

Exploring Healthcare and Culture in China's Southwest

 

From April 18 to 29, a team of 15 students from National University of Singapore (NUS) embarked on a Study Trip for Engagement and EnRichment (STEER) to the south western region of China. Led by Dr Tan Lai Yong, the team comprised students from the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, Faculty of Dentistry, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences – NUS Social Work and NUS Global Studies. The team traversed the region between Guangxi to Yunnan and obtained eye-opening exposure to Chinese healthcare, culture and society.

 

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DEAN'S MESSAGE

 

Dear Reader, 

 

Fourteen years ago, the National University of Singapore introduced an undergraduate nursing degree. Taught by experienced faculty with extensive nursing experience gained here and abroad, the pioneer batch of graduate nurses has gone on to make their mark in various healthcare roles throughout Singapore.
 
They have been joined over the years by over a thousand other NUS Nursing graduates. Working alongside other healthcare colleagues, NUS Nursing graduates have contributed immensely to the health and well-being Singaporeans from all walks of life. This year, the Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies celebrates the 10th anniversary of the graduation of that inaugural Nursing Class of 2009. That first class numbered about 50 graduates. Today, the graduating class numbers stands at 197.
 
The setting up of the Centre as a department within the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine in 2005 has also enabled many synergies within the School over the last 14 years. Chief among these was paving the way for future nurses and doctors to learn together, allowing them to benefit from better understanding and knowledge of one another’s profession. Interprofessional training helps them see one another’s point of view and learn better teamwork and communication.
 

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DOSSIER

 

NUS Pharmacology: Celebrating 60 Years of Education and Research

 

Mention the numeral “60”, and many of us would think of the Merdeka Generation – the generation that worked hard and contributed to Singapore’s achievements today. But to many in the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, especially staff of the Department of Pharmacology, there is another significance to 60, as we associate it with the 60th Anniversary of the Department in 2019!

 

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NUS Medicine Celebrates Heritage and Ties

 

A new addition to the orchid family, the Vanda NUS Medicine, was unveiled at the annual Medical Dinner as a tribute to the tenacity and industry of everyone who helped shape the teaching and practice of medicine in Singapore. The dinner, themed “Celebrating our Heritage” was held on 3 July, marking the day the school was established in 1905.

 

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SCIENCE OF LIFE

 

New Gastric Cancer Programme Combines Most Promising Research and Clinical Avenues 

 

When the National Medical Research Council (NMRC) awards were announced on 3 April 2019, the news that the Singapore Gastric Cancer Consortium (SGCC) was awarded a $25 million Open Fund-Large Collaborative Grant was greeted with little surprise.

 

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CRISPR’s Window to the Origins of Disease

 

Scientists have been modifying genes for decades to study their effects on biological processes. For most of this time, they had to use techniques that were laborious and not very efficient. This all changed in 2012, with the discovery that an obscure bacterial defense system, based on clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR), could be turned into a precise, efficient and affordable tool to edit practically any genetic target.

 

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IN VIVO

 

A Chinese Lesson

 

From April 18 to 29, a team of 15 students from National University of Singapore (NUS) embarked on a Study Trip for Engagement and EnRichment (STEER) to the south western region of China. Led by Dr Tan Lai Yong, the team comprised students from the Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, Faculty of Dentistry, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences – NUS Social Work and NUS Global Studies. The team traversed the region between Guangxi to Yunnan and obtained eye-opening exposure to Chinese healthcare, culture and society.

 

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Like Real!

 

Medical students at NUS Medicine put their knowledge and skills to the test as members of a medical emergency response team operating in various mass casualty incident scenarios, through a virtually simulated environment. This is made possible through the School’s introduction of the Virtual Interactive Simulation Environment (VISE) system at the Centre for Healthcare Simulation. A part of the VR medical simulation project developed jointly by NUS Medicine and researchers from the Smart Systems Institute in NUS, this new supplementary learning system is native to NUS and Singapore.

 

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ETHICALLY SPEAKING

 

The Global Agenda on Universal Health Coverage: Tackling Questions of Quality

 

The recent Lancet Global Health Commission on High Quality Health Systems emphasised that changing health needs, growing public expectations, and ambitious new health goals are raising the bar for health systems internationally. In this article, we introduce some of the work that the Centre for Biomedical Ethics (CBmE) will undertake to help advance aspirations for high quality healthcare for all in the context of its role as a World Health Organisation (WHO) Collaborating Centre for Bioethics.

 

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INSIGHTS

 

Reflections of a Weekend Gardener

 

Dr Noreen Chan, Head & Senior Consultant, Division of Palliative Care, National University Cancer Institute, Singapore (NCIS), reflects on her fond memories of sharing in her late father's enthusiasm for gardening, and draws parallels between planting orchids and education and training.


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Whither The Next Generation of Medicines?

 

Associate Professor Roger Foo of the Cardiovascular Research Institute ponders the brave new world of genomic medicine and molecular biology. He shares his fascination with the “blueprint” of humans that have been revealed and the meaning and relevance of a full human genome map.

 

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The Long Dawn: From Colony to Independence

 

The birth of modern Singapore as we know it now is inextricably linked to the arrival of Sir Stamford Raffles on 28 January, 1819. 

Singapore then was little more than a fishing village, mostly covered by jungle and a few buildings, a few acres of land under cultivation. Within days of landing, Raffles had concluded the Singapore Treaty with the local rulers to secure rights for a British trading post in Singapore. By 1824, Singapore and its surrounding islands had been ceded to the British East India Company and subsumed under the rule of the Straits Settlement government, founded in 1786 by Sir Francis Light and based in Penang at that time.

 

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ALL IN THE FAMILY

 

Lending a Hand

 

Medical emergencies can happen anywhere, and when they happen in the community, the Family Doctor is sometimes best placed to provide the immediate care required. Starting this issue, we share stories from "Being Human – stories from Family Medicine", published in May 2019 by Adjunct Associate Professor Cheong Pak Yean and Dr Ong Chooi Peng.

 

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ALUMNI VOICES

 

The Father of Tanglin halt

 

Wedged in between a hair salon and an interior design office, Meng’s Clinic stands like a time capsule in the middle of the busy Tanglin Halt neighbourhood. A faded sun-bleached white and red sign hangs above the now-yellow doors. Inside, large yellowing benches frame the sides of the clinic, and a small square hole allows the receptionist to peer out at patients. It is Dr Chan Khye Meng's 55th year at Tanglin Halt, and he is officially hanging up his stethoscope.

 

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PEOPLE OF NUS MEDICINE

 

Every Nurse's Nurse

 

Professor Violeta Lopez left her position at the NUS Alice Lee Centre for Nursing Studies in June. She reflects on a healthcare career spanning many decades.

 

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SCHEDULER

 

AUGUST - OCTOBER


 

Date Event & Venue


Aug 10 Rag & Flag
Bishan-Ang Mo Kio Park, Ficus Green
 
Aug 13 Keynote Address
University Cultural Centre (UCC), NUS
 
Aug 15
White Coat Ceremony
University Cultural Centre (UCC), NUS
 
Sep 6-7
NUHS Innovation Summit
Level 1, Auditorium, NUHS Tower Block
 
Sep 7
Medical Grand Challenge
Level 1, Auditorium, NUHS Tower Block
 
Sep 12
Mass Spectrometry Imaging Symposium
Level 1, Auditorium, NUS Clinical Research Centre (MD11)
 
Sep 14
Educator's Day
Level 1, LT35, NUS Centre for Translational Medicine (MD6)
 
Sep 30
CENTRES 9th International Clinical Ethics Conference: 
Recent legal developments and their implications for healthcare practice
Kent Ridge Guild House, NUS