PAME Third National Conference 2016 attracts delegates from India, Iran and Bhutan as well

Prof. Nizamuddin calls for research based on
our needs and policies based on evidence

Public health issues remain neglected and we need more public 

health institutions in Pakistan manned by social scientists

Capacity building of Editorial teams, researchers will help

improve standard of Pakistani Biomedical Journals and

they will earn more citations


From our special correspondent

LAHORE: Punjab Higher Education Commission Chairman Prof. Nizamuddin has called for research based on our needs and making policies based on evidence. Best results in healthcare can be achieved if we bring together researchers and policy makers to promote research culture. He was inaugurating the two day Third National Conference of Pakistan Association of Medical Editors (PAME) organized in collaboration with Eastern Mediterranean Association of Medical Editors (EMAME) and Health Research Advisory Board at University of Health Sciences Lahore on April 1st2016.

Prof. M. Nizamuddin

Punjab Higher Education Commission

The two day conference was largely attended by editors and editorial teams of biomedical journals published from Pakistan, authors, researches from all over the country. The conference also attracted a few foreign delegates and those who graced the occasion with their presence included Prof. M.B. Rokni from Tehran University of Medical Sciences Iran who is also Editor of Iranian Journal of Public Health and Iranian  Journal of  Parasitology, Prof. Peush Sahni from All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi who is also former President of World Association of Medical Editors (WAME), current President of Indian Association of Medical Journal Editors and Editor of National Medical Journal of India published by AIIMS. He was accompanied by his wifeDr. Ameeta Sahni Consultant Anaesthetist and Dr. Tikaram Adhikari Editor of Bhutan Health Journal from Bhutan.

Sitting on the Dais during the Pakistan Association of Medical Editors (PAME) Conference Dinner on 
April 1st from (L to R) are Dr. Irfan General Secretary PAME, Prof. M. Aslam VC UHS, Prof. Ijaz Ahsan 

(Guest of Honour), Prof. TahirSaeed Haroon (Chief Guest), Prof. Nasir Khokhar President PAME 
and Dr. Jamshed Akhtar President-elect PAME.

Continuing Prof. Nizamuddin said that in Pakistan public health remains neglected. We have just two three Institute of Public Health though we need many more such institutions where social scientists should be working. He did not support the concept of Publish and Perish and opined that it is the quality of research which matters most and not the quantity.  Research should help solve healthcare issues faced in our country. At present almost every medical college and institution has its own medical journal but their quality leaves much to be desired. There are only four medical journals from Pakistan which are included in the Journal Citation Report for Impact Factor. He emphasized the importance of organizing regular workshops, training courses for capacity building of editors, editorial teams, researchers which will also help improve the quality and standard of our medical journals and they will get more citations. He laid emphasis on medical practice based on core knowledge.

Pakistan with a huge population, Prof. Nizamuddin further stated, has lot of useful data. Doctors should be trained to document this data. It is moral obligation of doctors to document all the data and have all the relevant details of the patients they treat and examine. They should know their patients fully well but unfortunately a large number of healthcare professionals do not maintain any record of their patients which is highly unethical. He asked the University of Health Sciences to undertake some research projects and publish a research journal for which the Punjab Higher Education Commission will provide necessary funding.


Prof. Maj. Gen. M.Aslam VC UHS and Chairman of the organizing committee of PAME Third National 
Conference is presenting flower Bouquet to Prof. Tahir Saeed Haroon ( Chief Guest) while on right 
Prof. Nasar Khokhar President PAME is presenting flower bouquet to Prof. Ijaz Ahsan
Guest of Honour at the PAME Third National Conference dinner on April 1, 2016.

If we have proper data, it will help the doctors to make presentations and also write scientific papers. UHS should also initiate to organize an annual conference on Medical Research and publish its proceedings. Successful surgical cases should be documented and the surgical procedures, techniques should be told to others to train them. We need to promote research and encourage our healthcare professionals to document data and write research articles. We are in the habit of often spending money on wrong places. We need to spend more money in Health and Education. Currently lot of data which is available is lying in bookshelves in binders. Preventive medicine, Prof. Nizamuddin opined needs little more attention. Private health sector should also take care of medical care and concentrate on community medicine and community health care. Institutes of Public Health need social scientists, epidemiologist and not the medical doctors who cannot understand the public health issues better, he remarked.


On left Prof. Tahir Saeed Haroon presenting mementoe to Prof. M.B. Rokni from Iran while on left 
Prof. Ijaz Ahsan is presenting mementoe to Dr. Tikaram Adhikari from Bhutan during the PAME 
Conference Dinner organized at UHS Campus on April1, 2016.

President PAME Dr. Fatema Jawad in her speech said that the aims of PAME include improving editorial standards and promoting professionalism in medical editing through education, self-criticism and self-guidance. Awareness about clinical research, she said, was now growing and it is being carried out in medical institutions. Number of scientific publications has also increased during the past couple of years but there is an urgent need to improve their standards. Over seventy biomedical journals are currently published and recognized by various regulatory bodies but only four of them were recognized internationally. PM&DC and HEC can play a vital role in improving the standard of biomedical journals in Pakistan, she added.

Prof. Nasir Khokhar and Dr. Jamshed Akhtar President and President-elect respectively presenting 
certificates of participation to Prof. M. B. Rokni from Iran and Dr. Tikaram Adhikari from Bhutan 
during the PAME Third National conference.

Earlier Prof.Major Gen. Mohammad Aslam Vice Chancellor of University of Health Sciences who was also Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the PAME Third National Conference 2016 in his welcome address said that medical journals could contribute to knowledge by publishing quality research and ensuring that peer review process was in place. It must also be ensured that the journals are published regularly and cover evidence based medicine focusing on health issues faced by the country and the community at large.

Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid General Secretary of EMAME pointed out that the conference was aimed at promoting collaboration and exchange among editors, authors, researchers and publishers of medical journals and improving the quality of research. Dr. Jamshed Akhtar General Secretary of PAME thanked all those who had helped in successful organization of the conference, facilitators of various workshops, invited guest speakers and the presenters during the conference. UHS had approved three CME Hours for each Workshop and Twelve CME Credits for the two day conference.

The theme of the conference was “Professionalism and Medical Journal Editors”. There were two pre-conference workshops on Medical Writing and Publication Ethics while three workshops on Editorship, Use of Information Technology in Medical Journalism and Peer Review were organized on April 2nd, the second day of the conference. Late Dr. Sarwar Zuberi Memorial Session was devoted to the role of Regulatory bodies like PM&DC and HEC in promoting medical journalism and quality of the biomedical journals. Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid delivered Dr. Maqbool H. Jafary Memorial Thematic Lecture on “Professionalism and Medical Editors”. This session was jointly chaired by Prof. Mohammad Aslam Vice Chancellor of UHS and Prof. M.Akbar Chaudhry Principal of Azra Naheed Medical College. Both of them also paid rich tributes to late Dr. Maqbool H.Jafary and recalled his services to promote the art of medical writing and scientific publishing. Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid in his presentation in the citation highlighted the academic accomplishments and achievements of late Dr. Maqbool H.Jafary who was a mentor for him and so many others in different fields.

 Participants of Workshop on Editorship organized during the PAME Third National Conference on
April 2, 2016 photographed with VC UHS, guests from overseas besides the facilitator.

The conference started with an open session on What PAME, EMAME can do for the medical Journal Editors. There was a special session on the role of regulatory bodies like Pakistan Medical and Dental Council and Higher Education Commission but unfortunately none of the representatives from both these bodies were present to listen to the problems and grievances of the editors and how to solve them. Scientific programme also included panel discussion on  Practical issues in Medical Journal Editing and an open session devoted to Problems faced by National Medical Journals wherein Editors of various journals published by medical institutions, specialty organizations highlighted the problems which they face and thus shared their experience with other colleagues. Prof. Saba Sohail moderated tis session. The conference concluded with a Free paper Session.

Conference Dinner

Prof. Ijaz Ahsan former Principal of King Edward Medical College who is also former President of College of Physicians & Surgeons Pakistan was the Guest of Honour at the conference dinner while Prof. Tahir Saeed Haroon an eminent dermatologist, who retired as Prof.  & Head of the Dept. of Dermatology from KEMC graced the occasion with his presence as Chief Guest. Introducing both these distinguished medical personalities Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid Chief Coordinator of the PAME Third National Conference said that Prof. Ijaz Ahsan was one of the speakers at the first seminar on Medical Writing which we had organized in 1992 at King Edward Medical College/Mayo Hospital Lahore where he spoke on how to write a Case Report. His latest Text Book of Surgery, he said, has won international acclaim and is extremely informative and useful for the medical students since it has been written in a very simple easy to understand English language.

 Prof. Tahir Saeed Haroon came to Pakistan in 1976 from UK where he was serving as a Consultant. It was not easy to be appointed as a consultant in UK for an Asian in those days. In Pakistan, he founded the Pakistan Association of Dermatologists, was first affiliated with JPMC at Karachi and established the Dep.t of Dermatology before joining King Edward Medical College/Mayo Hospital where he established a state of the art department of dermatology which now has two units. He managed to build a team and was the moving spirit behind the start of first MCPS and then FCPS in dermatology.  He has trained one MD, forty FCPS and twenty five MCPS in dermatology. It was he who managed to get recognition and respect for this specialty and skin specialists. It won’t be an exaggeration to mention him as the father figure of dermatology in Pakistan. In addition he has authored eight medical books and special issues of the medical journals, has over hundred scientific papers to his credit besides has also published fifteen books of poetry in Urdu of which twelve are compilation of his Doha’s for which he has earned respect from the literary circles in Pakistan as well. He was former President of Pakistan Medical Journalists Association which was renamed as PAME in 2010 and it was during his Presidency that we were able to hold the first ever national conference on Medical Editing at Army Medical College Rawalpindi.

Some of the facilitators of pre-conference workshops organized during the PAME Third National 
Conference photographed with Prof. M. Aslam VC UHS who was also chairman 
of the organizing committee of the conference.

As such he has also contributed a lot to promote the art of medical writing and scientific publishing in Pakistan. We in PAME always remember our friends and well-wishers hence this was the reason why we decided to Honour these both distinguished physicians at our dinner. The dinner reception was also attended by a large number of distinguished medical personalities, Principals of medical colleges, Deans of postgraduate medical institutes including Prof. Mahmood Ali Malik, Prof. Zahid Bashir, Prof. Eice Mohammad, Prof. Riaz Ahsan Siddiqui and former Director of NICVD Prof. Lt-Gen. M. Afzal Najeeb, Prof. M. Akbar Chaudhry, Prof. Talat Naheed,  Syed Jamshed Ahmad Chief Operating Officer of PharmEvo which has established Health Research Advisory Board which was one of the collaborating organizations in this conference, Dr. Asad Abass Director Marketing and Sales from OBS Pakistan and numerous faculty members from medical institutions from Lahore. A large number of students trained by Prof. Tahir Saeed Haroon now working at various medical institutions as faculty members were also invited to the dinner reception. Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid specially thanked PharmEvo for their unlimited support for academic activities organized by PAME, valuable help and assistance provided by OBS Pakistan and Atco Laboratories which has helped us a lot to organize this conference successfully. He also thanked the foreign guest speakers from India, Iran and Bhutan for attending the conference.

Earlier Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid also traced the history of PAME how it was established. He also recalled its achievements and accomplishments so far. We work as a team and hold elections regularly. With the help of Health RAB PAME, he said, has been regularly holing workshops on Medical Writing, Peer Review, Publication Ethics and training course of medical journal editors all over the country in various institutions. He specially thanked Prof. Maj.Gen. Mohammad Aslam Vice Chancellor of UHS, Pro VC Prof. Junaid Sarfraz Khan and the entire team of UHS for providing this excellent venue for the conference and excellent logistics, audiovisual facilities for the conference. The entire staff of UHS starting from the security staff to the Vice Chancellor has extended us their cooperation for which PAME and its Executive was extremely grateful.

Some of the delegates to thePAME Third National Conference held at UHS Lahore photographed along 
with Prof. M. Aslam VC UHS, invited guest speakers from Iran and Bhutan besides guests and PAME 
Executive Committee Members soon after the inauguration on April 1, 2016.

Speaking at the occasion Prof. Ijaz Ahsan described how difficult it was to write scientific papers when he was a young faculty member. Finding references was an uphill task but now things have become very easy. Prof. Tahir Saeed Haroon thanked PAME for honouring him and also highlighted the contributions made by numerous distinguished medical editors including Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid, Dr. Fatema Jawad, Prof. Major Gen. M.Aslam, Dr.Akhtar Sherin, late Dr. Maqbool H. Jafary and late Dr. Sarwar Zuberi to promote the art of medical writing and scientific publishing which has helped to improve the standard of biomedical journals published from Pakistan. Mrs. Dr. Maqbool H. Jafary and Javed Jafary brother of late Dr. Maqbool H. Jafary were also specially invited to the dinner reception.

A meeting of the South Asian Association of Medial Editors (SAAME) was also held on the last day of the conference which was attended by Prof. Peush Sahni from India, Dr. Tikaram from Bhutan and office bearers of PAME Dr. Fatema Jawad, Dr. Akhtar Sherin, Dr. Jamshed Akhtar, Dr. Masood Jawaid and Mr. Shaukat Ali Jawaid Central Coordinator of SAAME and some other editors. It was decided to have increased collaboration in academics and benefit from the knowledge and experience of editor colleagues from all the SAARC countries through an exchange programme inviting them to the national conferences organized by the Medical Journal Editors of various countries as and when they are organized. We can also use SKIPE and Video Conferencing facility to collaborate in academics, teaching and training of our colleagues.




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