Wanowrie, 4th February 2022: Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC), Pune organized the 70th Annual Armed Forces Medical Conference and the 60th Armed Forces Medical Research Committee (AFMRC) Meeting from 02 to 04 Feb 2022. This year’s sessions were completely conducted online. The conference reached out to a wide audience from all parts of the country fostering a spirit of enquiry and research among the young researchers of Armed Forces Medical Services.
The three-day conference, organized by AFMC, Pune, discussed a wide spectrum of professional issues concerning the Armed Forces Medical Services (AFMS). The conference, which is the highpoint of the annual academic calendar of AFMS, was formally inaugurated by Surg VAdm Rajat Datta, AVSM, SM, VSM, PHS, Director General Armed Forces Medical Services (DGAFMS) virtually from New Delhi.
Awards for academic excellence in post graduate and in-service training courses, Medical Journal of Armed Forces of India (MJAFI) best published paper and best reviewer awards were presented by the DGAFMS. The principal investigators of five best AFMRC projects in subjects of Internal Medicine, Surgery, Pathology, Community Medicine and Dental Surgery were felicitated. Five best research papers published by doctors of the Armed Forces Medical Services were awarded “The Chief of Army Staff Award”, “The Chief of Naval Staff Award”, “The Chief of Air Staff Award”, “DGAFMS medal” and “Late Lt Gen RS Hoon Award”.
To further foster cooperation with the civilian medical community several guest lectures by eminent speakers were organized. Dr Sushma Bhatnagar, Professor and Head, Dept of Onco-Anaesthesia and Palliative Medicine, AIIMS, New Delhi delivered the ‘Diamond Jubilee Oration’ on the topic ‘Palliative Care’. Dr Amit Gupta, Professor, Trauma Surgery and Critical Care, JPN Apex Trauma Centre, AIIMS, New Delhi shared his insight on ‘Reducing burden of injury in India’. Medical Journal Armed Forces India oration for the year 2022 was delivered by Dr T Jacob John, an eminent virologist who has the distinction of establishing the first virology diagnostic lab in the country, on the topic “Polio eradication: the journey and where we have reached”.
At the core of the deliberations was the 60th Annual Meeting of Armed Forces Medical Research Committee (AFMRC) held on 03 and 04 February 2022. The AFMRC provided a platform to the AFMS researchers posted all over the country to meaningfully contribute and be a valuable part of the enormous research and learning process of the AFMS. This year 151 new research projects were discussed. The projects were approved taking into consideration their relevance to the Armed Forces.
The DGAFMS congratulated the AFMS for stellar services rendered during COVID-19 pandemic. Armed Forces healthcare workers worked steadfastly at various COVID hospitals all over the country and their performance was exemplary. The DGAFMS asserted the role and responsibilities of AFMS in the South East Asia Region and beyond. He emphasized that AFMS assets are deployed in most difficult terrains, be it the Himalayan peaks or High Seas and are fulfilling their responsibilities and challenges with utmost dedication and ensuring clientele satisfaction. The importance of medical profession and need for updating skills with changing technologies was also reiterated.
Session on perspective challenges included talk by Maj Gen Sandeep Thareja, VSM, Commandant, Command Hospital, Lucknow on “Comprehensive medical services during COVID-19 pandemic” and Brig Manas Chatterjee, Brig (Med), HQ 14 Corps on “Combat health care management challenges in High altitude areas”. Brig D Vivekanand, Brig Med (P), O/o DGMS (Army) delivered a talk on “HR challenges of meeting individual aspirations and organizational needs”.
The Armed Forces Medical Conference provides an excellent platform for deliberations in the field of Clinical Medicine, Military Medicine and Combat Medical support. The conference witnessed clinicians, researchers, academicians and medical administrators deliberate on current and emerging areas of importance in health care and chart a roadmap for medical research for Armed Forces Medical Services.