Indonesia is an archipelago composed of more than 17,000 islands with a population of approximately 220 million. There are around 8,000 physicians of various specialties in the country. Jakarta, its capital city and one of the regionís most exotic metropolises, was the destination of Dr. Edgardo Ortiz and Ms. Marie Reyes on February 23, 2006. The warm breeze of Indonesian air greeted them as they went to Arya Duta Hotel and Gran Mahakam Hotel to meet the Key Opinion Leaders (KOLs) of Indonesiaís medical community. The purpose of their visit was to present an overview of UMED, its mission and experience in providing the Filipino physicians the latest developments in medical science through high quality CME activities like State-of-the- Art conferences and interactive discussions that were devoid of commercialism.
UMED offers a kind of continuing medical education activity that is not yet available in Indonesia. Likewise, Dr. Ortiz and Ms. Reyes discussed the information services and research options provided by the Scientific Databank (SDB). The latest on-line information system called the e SDB MD Central was also presented.
This visit was hoped to lead to the formation of a UMED board of advisers for the various field of medical specialties like pulmonology, cardiology, oncology and dermatology, the initial step necessary in the eventual establishment of UMED Indonesia. While in Jakarta, Dr. Ortiz met with the top officials and medical practitioners of Cipto Mangunkusumo Hospital, the countryís biggest government medical center . An atmosphere of enthusiasm and interest on the prospect of having their own local UMED prevailed among those present in the meeting. The four day visit included a tour to another government hospital, Harapan Kita Hospital.
On March 23 and 24, Indonesian physicians attended UMEDís State-of-the Art conferences on malnutrition and womenís health issues held in EDSA Shangri-la Hotel. The delegates included Drs. Guslihan Dasacipta, Syarifudin Rauf, Sutaryo. Another group of Indonesian physicians also had the opportunity to participate in the First Cebu Breast Cancer conference on May 19. Among them were Drs. Sonar Sony, Daniel Sampe, Kunto Setiaji, Heru, Joko, Welly and Drajat.
Six years ago, Unilab Philippines initiated the formation of UMED, one of the countryís leaders in Continuing Medical Education. In 2006, history repeats itself in Indonesia.