True to our country’s active participation in the ASEAN Integration, the Philippine Society of Hematology and Blood Transfusion (PSHBT) hosted the 4th ASEAN Federation of Hematology Congress. It was held at the EDSA Shangri-La from September 21 to 24, 2016 with the theme ‘Improving Outcomes in Hematologic Disorders: The ASEAN Perspective.’ Through the event, the congress acknowledged that, while we have had great medical advancements the past few years, there is still a long way to go for our region to fully address its shortcomings in hematologic issues. Education is and will always be key to proper information dissemination. Thus, the congress aims to further inform the ASEAN community of the developments made by each country in the field of hematology.
The four-day congress had prepared a packed itinerary of symposia, workshops and lectures for its guest list that includes hematologists, pathologists and pediatricians among others. The discussions revolved around our region’s current problems on hematology and the recent findings that may help in solving them. Representatives from each ASEAN country were eager to teach and be taught by fellow medical practitioners, making the spirit of camaraderie in the face of adversity evident throughout the event.
MEDTEK had the privilege of being a part of the said event. Our booth stood in the convention’s exhibit hall with catalogues of our latest hemoglobin meters and coagulation analyzers on display for prospective new clients to browse. Our company supports PSHBT’s initiative to improve the country’s overall diagnostic capacity for hematologic illnesses by making sure that local institutions are granted access to advanced hematology and coagulation analyzers.
Four days, three luncheon symposia, five convention symposia, and nine plenary sessions after, the congress wrapped up on the latter part of September 24 with its closing ceremonies. Assembling some of Southeast Asia’s top medical minds under one roof is no easy feat but the PSHBT managed to do just that and more. It achieved an effective space for discourse on important hematologic disorders like hemophilia and thalassemia and ended it with a promise of a more immediate and collaborative correspondence between countries. The event highlighted not how far away we are from achieving the ideal hematology treatment in the region, but the distance we’re willing to cover together as a community.