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New PDS President!

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Dr. Ma. Purita Paz-Lao, FPDS

To my dear colleagues,

It is an unbelievable honor to be the President of the Philippine Dermatological Society. Often times I always ask why I find myself in these situations. Going back a little history of my life, I also asked the same when I found myself being interviewed as a candidate to assume the post of Chairman of the Department of Dermatology of Makati Medical Center.

In my life as a professional, things just land on my lap, responsibilities that I did not even dream would occupy my professional career. But I do not back out from a challenge and served as MMC Dept of Dermatology Chair for 9.5 years. I did not back out at the formidable challenge of being the President of PDS because I believe, that if you put yourself at the foot of the ladder of your priorities, and elevate to the summit the goals for the common good for everyone, things simply fall into place. In other words, be selfless.

I will admit, the reluctant me as a greenhorn board member, matured and grew with the society and I simply just have a love affair now with the PDS. The PDS now occupies a place in my heart and has put meaning in my professional career.

I would now like to present my roadmap for the next 2 years…..

PDS… unveils a new P. A. G. E.


P is for professionalism.

Professionalism can be expressed by a physician’s commitment to continuously self-assess and improve the quality of the care provided.

How to achieve this:

  1. Professionalize PDS by increasing the number of board certified dermatologists. Let us be bold enough to take the challenge of setting up training institutions to be scattered all over the country. I challenge our chapters with hospitals particularly government institutions to start training programs. As you produce graduates who would return and share their skills in your own locales, you put more dots the Philippine map representing professional, astute PDS dermatologists. Our ultimate goal would be to minimize the number of those who fail to get into residency programs.
  2. With several training institutions particularly in the provinces, let us form a link of consortiums so that the weaknesses of the training programs can be supplemented by the strengths of the others.
  3. Amend the constitution appropriately to enable it to be attuned to the changes that have unfolded over the past few years.
  4. Update and invigorate our Code of Ethics which will embolden instead of discourage our members to go public and have confidence instead of fear and retraction.
  5. Reorganize the Board of Examiners – this board should have impeccable integrity and aligned with international standards since it is the certifying body of our profession.
  6. Develop and fund fellowship programs starting with sub specialties with existing strong footholds to give equal opportunities to those who’re unable to go abroad.


A is for Advancement.

  1. let us AUTOMATE
    – Automate payment of annual dues
    – Automate payment of registration
    – Automate the annual convention attendance
    – streamline the Secretariat to make it a more effective organisation in itself by adapting faster efficacious working methods.
  2. let us maximize the power of our website and make it the repository of valuable messages and articles including our online JPDS and SkinContact with the ultimate goal of making them accessible in popular and intellectual search engines in the Asian region and worldwide.


G is Give back

  1. GIVE BACK – all of us have taken cared of PDS. Let PDS take care of you now. We have members who are alone 1. or very few in provinces – Surigao…Zamboanga….Romblon…..Batanes….Palawan…I want you to know all of you. We shall formulate activities, funded by PDS to enable you to form bigger groups so you can all benefit these, be visible and actively interacting with each other in your own locals
  2. Modest Financial aids – to institutions needing additional funding for training programs and post graduate courses.
  3. To appropriate modest budgets for the committees working for the upgrade of PDS services to further improve and expedite results.
  4. I have been in preliminary talks with government officials and have plans of one yearly well-organized medical expedition in areas identified as having a big population of countrymen with skin diseases. This would be in conjunction with local officials who can provide adequate logistics and manpower.
  5. In areas where it is only feasible to have a small community of dermatologists, not enough to form a chapter, start an association or a league which can be called an auxiliary or a satellite cluster of one the 4 main chapters. PDS will help you start.


E is enhance

  1. Telemedicine – Through the wonders of telemedicine we can eventually target far flung provinces. This can very well be planned events or incorporated with the LEAPS and CMEs. Groups of dermatologists in provinces can unite together to present cases, advise treatment, hold seminars and workshops. The nucleus will be the expertise of manila based colleagues bridging the gaps brought about by our country’s architecture and sharing knowledge and skills.
  2. Upgrade the accreditation process to traverse the process of application and approval
  3. Regional and Global presence
    – accept invitations to share in Asian conventions
    – actively participate in programs offered by the AAD to Asian countries
    – encourage residents to regularly submit abstracts, papers, posters to international conventions
    – maybe we can start to consider if feasible and safe to send a contingent of PDS derm in times of calamities within the Asian region
  4. Develop the youth of the PDS thru formation of mentor ship and leadership seminars with the ultimate goal of making them evolve into our leaders of tomorrow


Can we do this?? Of course we can.

I have identified 8 important plans from all these and have targeted completion or good implementation of all of these 8 plans in 100 days. My report shall come in the next 100 days.

Join me and let us all move forward with solidarity and sacrifice….


Your President,




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