Professor Neelakanthi Ratnatunga - President, The KSMI am greatly privileged to be elected as the 46th president of the Kandy Society of Medicine (KSM) for  the year 2015/16.  I am deeply aware of the responsibility of this post and I pledge to do my best for the progress of the society. What started off as a clinical society in the central hill capital of Sri Lanka, the Kandy Society of Medicine was formally established as a society in 1963 and is today  a very active institution. I take this opportunity to pay tribute to  the past presidents, secretaries and members of the councils for their untiring efforts and leaving a rich legacy for us today.

Compiling the committee was actually easy and a great pleasure because everyone I asked enthusiastically agreed to take up posts and I look forward to an enjoyable and fruitful year.

The past year has been a splendid one with numerous academic and social activities, culminating in a remarkable scientific session, which was greatly appreciated by all. I was struck by the commitment of each and every committee member  who contributed in one or many ways in all the activities last year, and I congratulate Dr. Gamini Edirisinghe the past president and his team for their dedication and hard work. Our programmes for this year will include the continuation of  programmes started by the previous committee such as  the “safe city better life programme” and the new building for the KSM. The latter is a formidable task, but we will keep moving forward. Upgrading and  improving the  Sri Lanka Journal of Medicine (SLJM) which is the official journal of the KSM will be of prime importance. The editors are keen  to making it an online journal.  Maintaining  the SLJM is a difficult task that the committee will have. So I invite all of you to join the editors assistant editors and the editorial committee in this endeavour. Please consider submitting  your articles and research papers to this journal . Publishing a journal in Sri Lanka is a very daunting task. I take this opportunity to thank the  two outgoing editors for keeping afloat the journal and I believe the 2014 issues will be out soon.

Our academic programme will target, all grades of doctors, and  postgraduate students, and we will try to promote the multi disciplinary concept for patient care. In this regard I am pleased to announce that our very first major event the cardiology teach - in  on the 27th of February organized jointly with the Sri Lanka Heart Association, where eminent cardiologists and cardiac surgeons spoke on 20 topics, each with a take home message,  proved to be tremendously  popular. It was attended by all grades of doctors: interns through house officers, senior house officers, postgraduates  etc to doctors working in wards, out patients and emergency units, specialized units and family physicians . There were many requests to organize similar programmes encompassing other specialties. Therefore we plan to  organize  two other programmes, on diseases of the thyroid and Diabetes Mellitus. Your ideas on the sub topics we could include in these programmes is greatly appreciated. This message goes out to all grades of doctors, very specially to those who work silently, unheard unsung,  hardly having time to do any reading. The educational programmes will also lay emphasis on improving the quality of research projects. This we hope will enhance the quality of the papers at the annual scientific sessions, and also attract publications to our journal.

We will also try and liase with a college overseas to see if our academic programme could be enhanced. We have already got a web streaming access to symposia organized by the Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh.  I hope the postgraduate center in Kandy and all of you will make use of this opportunity to listen in and even participate during question time on line.

The community will be reached through the various societies clubs, and also children in schools.

In this regard the National stroke Association of Sri Lanka has invited us to join them in their awareness programme.  Some of our social programmes also will take into account the lesser fortunate in our society.  A Christmas party for children in an orphanage, and a Vesak or Poson programme to help an elders home is being planned.  There will be an opportunity for children of our members and  colleagues  to visit the museums in the Faculty of Medicine University of Peradeniya. Of course there will be the fun programmes traditionally organized by the KSM such as the Peduru Party cum sing along,  the Avurudu festivities, KSM trip, Law Medical sports encounter and Dinner Dance, and the ever popular family concert. So you can look forward to  an enjoyable time.

I would like to invite  members and colleagues to please send in suggestions for events and potential activities, and to please join us in its organization. You don’t necessarily have to be a member of the committee. We will support any good idea.
Please do update your contact details such as e mail address and phone number  in the KSM office. Please do join us in our quest to “REACH OUT TO ALL” our theme for this year.

Professor Neelakanthi Ratnatunga
MD(Pathology) Ph.D, DPath, FRCPEdin, FCPathSL,MBBS
President Kandy Society of Medicine 2015/16