Message from the congress chair – SIMCON2020
It gives me great pleasure to compile these words as the congress chair of the SIMCON 2020 Annual Congress of Sri Lanka College of Internal Medicine. The annual congress is the pinnacle of academic activities in the college calendar. SIMCON 2020 will be held from 24th to 26th February 2021 at Hotel Grand Kandyan, Kandy. As frontline clinicians, we have entered the hornet’s nest in managing Covid 19 pandemic throughout the year 2020. Sri Lanka facing its second wave, was at a crucial juncture last November. In this context, we were compelled to postpone the SIMCON. This year we pledge to give you the most wonderful academic accolade in this hybrid programme which is launched amidst strict COVID health rules and regulations. SIMCON 2020 would be a novel experience for members of Sri Lanka College of Internal Medicine featuring a hybrid conference linking virtual and physical presence through the latest technology.
To pay the tribute to the yeoman service done by our members delivering excellent care in a limited resource setting, during this crisis, we have selected the theme for this year as “Devotion and diligence through courage, incomparable” To mark this historic event, the congress will be graced by senior Professor Saroj Jayasinghe as the Chief Guest, both senior Consultant Dr Henry Rajarathnam and ACP President Dr Jacqueline Winfield Fincher as the virtual guests of honor. The close association of the American College of Physicians with the Sri Lanka College of Internal Medicine from its inception is special and memorable. SIMCON 2020 will be a landmark of this special bond and enable us to work together on common goals.
The academic programme spans over two days, with plenaries, symposia, guest lectures, oration, expert discussions, and grand rounds. The faculty includes 50 speakers, including a delegation from the American College of Physicians from USA. Renowned international and Sri Lankan speakers will focus on empowering internal medicine specialists in the fields of metabolic, tropical, geriatric, cardiovascular, neurological, and respiratory medicine. There will also be Veterans’ file, a novel concept to discuss the clinical conundrums by sharing the memorable experience of veterans in the medical fraternity. The scientific papers have been given more prominence. Each day will commence with “oral presentations, and mid-day “poster presentations” which will enable the researchers to present their work to a wider audience. A special addition to this session is “Grand ward rounds” which will unravel the mysteries and showcase the healing power of the Specialist in Internal Medicine.
Three pre-congress workshops will be held on 24th February. Workshop for registrars on “How to pass MD Medicine” and workshop for senior registrars on “Getting ready for overseas training” would immensely benefit the post-graduate students. The workshop on “Non-invasive ventilation” conducted by the experts in the field is beneficial for both specialists and trainees. Finale would be a brainteaser with SIMCON quiz.
All these will be in addition to SIMCON oration and inauguration ceremony which would give a head start to the congress followed by a gala dinner on the opening day. I sincerely thank all the invited speakers, the abstract evaluation committee, the oration evaluation committee, and the free paper judges for their invaluable contributions. I take this opportunity to express my gratitude to the members of the scientific committee for their untiring efforts in putting this programme together. A special thanks go to all of you, for joining with us. Your presence has epitomized the strength and the solidarity of our young and vibrant association, SLCIM. SIMCON 2020 will set its benchmark as the first-ever for the new normal creating a space for virtual camaraderie, while gathering physically maintaining social distancing, under strict COVID precautions.
Dr. Suranga Ravinda Manilgama
MBBS, MD, FCCP, MRCP(UK), FRCP(London), FRCP(Edin), FACP(USA),
MRCP Endocrinology & Diabetes(UK)
Specialist Physician in Internal Medicine
North Colombo Teaching Hospital Ragama, Sri Lanka