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Academic Medicine in Singapore

Academic medicine is currently grappling with the problem of whether the triple-threat academician is a species threatened with extinction in the 21st century, given...

Foregoing Life Support in Medically Futile Patients

The origins of withholding medical support are found in ancient times. More than two millennia ago, Hippocrates (460 to 361 BC) stated that the...

Nitric Oxide in Septic Shock: Directions for Future Therapy?

In 1980, Furchgott and Zawadzki demonstrated that the relaxation of isolated arteries to acetylcholine required the presence of endothelial cells. This response was mediated...

Critical Care Medicine in the Western Pacific Region

The Western Pacific region includes a very diverse group of countries varying in their culture, economic development and per capita income, disease prevalence and...

Critical Care—The Worldwide Perspective

Although special areas for postoperative patients existed 50 years ago, the modern specialty of Critical Care began during the polio epidemic of the 1950s....

Malaria Requiring Intensive Care

Malaria is an important and common infectious parasitic disease globally. It is associated with significant morbidity and mortality, especially in endemic areas. This article is...

A Retrospective Study of Near-drowning Victims Admitted to the Intensive Care Unit

Drowning victims suffocate from submersion. This may lead to immediate death or, if they survive, brain damage if significant cerebral hypoxia is present. This article...

Ergotism and Vascular Insufficiency: A Case Report and Review of Literature

Toxicity from ergot and its derivative is well known. Great epidemics occurred during the middle ages due to consumption of rye contaminated with the...

Plasma Vitamins A, C and E in the General Population of Singapore, 1993 to 1995

The current disease pattern in Singapore (an island state of 3.3 million people composed of 76% Chinese, 14% Malays, 7% Asian Indians and 3%...

Intravital Microscopy for the Study of the Microcirculation in Various Disease States

It is more than 150 years ago when the first detailed description of intravital microscopy was given by Waller, demonstrating in the frog tongue...

Introduction of Problem-based Learning in a Traditional Medical Curriculum in Singapore—Students’ and Tutors’ Perspectives

The National University of Singapore was started in 1905. Since then, it has trained many generations of medical practitioners. This article is available only as...

Book Review

The above is a textbook of medicine written by Singapore doctors and published in Singapore. It is difficult not to be over-enthusiastic about it...

Gemella Empyema Cured without Antibiotics: A Case Report

Gemella are gram-positive anaerobic bacteria that rarely produce serious human infections. We describe a case of thoracic empyema that occurred in an elderly Chinese...

The Clinician Meets the Computer—Uneasy Bedfellows

Information technology has become a cornerstone of civilization as we know it. In its broadest definition, information technology encompasses all forms of technology required...

Leveraging on Information Technology to Enhance Patient Care: A Doctor’s Perspective of Implementation in a Singapore Academic Hospital

Information technology (IT) has become truly pervasive in everyday life; however, in the field of medicine, we have yet to fully harness its full...

Internal Medicine

It has taken a long time to plan for this November issue in Internal Medicine. The topic is so wide and often neglected as...

General Medicine—Revisited, Rejuvenated, Revitalised and Reemphasised

“The irresistible swing towards medical specialisation has brought advantages for patients but arguably this has gone too far.” It is time to review the...

A Countrywide Approach to the Control of Non-communicable Diseases—The Singapore Experience

In the area of health, the last two decades has seen a decline or eradication of deadly diseases, such as smallpox and polio, the...

Causes for the Evolution of Case Management and the Development of a Working Model in an Acute Care Hospital in Singapore

In 1999, significant changes to the healthcare funding structure were introduced to public sector hospitals in Singapore. This was the advent of casemix-based funding...

Evidence-based Medicine: The Key to Guidelines, Disease and Care Management Programmes

Health care in America and the rest of the industrialised world continues to reinvent itself at an ever-accelerating rate. The societal pressures for high...

National Disease Management Plans for Key Chronic Non-communicable Diseases in Singapore

Like most other newly industrialised economies, Singapore has undergone a rapid epidemiological transition over the last 50 years. Chronic, non-communicable diseases have replaced infectious...

Chronic Disease Management: Challenges for Clinicians and the Way Forward

The healthcare, financial and social burden of chronic diseases, such as diabetes mellitus, coronary heart disease, asthma, chronic obstructive airway disease, hypertension, chronic depression,...

Measuring Health-related Quality of Life in Singapore: Normal Values for the English and Chinese SF-36 Health Survey

Advances in diagnosis and therapy in the second half of the 20th century have lead to impressive improvements in survival for patients with many...

Should Ethical Issues in Biotechnology Research be Decided by Physicians-Scientists or by Lawyers?

As with clinical practice, the practice of biomedical research is a moral activity. We have to think about what we should do, not just...

Patterns and predictors of sound levels in hospital rooms

Dear Editor,      Excessive sound levels in the hospital can impair the work performance of healthcare professionals and affect patient well-being.1 Previous studies have also...

1st College of Physicians Lecture: The Role of Internal Medicine as a Specialty in the Era of Subspecialisation

It humbles me to accept the invitation to give this lecture, the First College of Physicians Lecture, titled “The Role of Internal Medicine as...

Standards and Revalidation or Recertification

In my Gordon Arthur Ransome Oration and other papers, I have described the nature and development of patient-centred professionalism, the key features of which...

Continuing Professional Development – a Surrogate for Recertification?

The Hong Kong Academy of Medicine is a statutory body set up in 1993 with the objectives of fostering the development of postgraduate medical...

Teaching and Learning of Professionalism in Medical Schools

There is now worldwide consensus that the elements of medical professionalism need to be enhanced and explicitly taught in medical schools. Medical schools in...

The Challenge of Teaching Professionalism

For the past 25 years, professionalisation, industrialisation, large-scale infusions of technology into the healthcare system and consumerism, to name a few factors, have definitely...

2004 Runme Shaw Memorial Lecture: Professionalism – A Concept in Need of Nurturing

It is a great honour to be invited to deliver the Runme Shaw Memorial Lecture. I am grateful to the Runme Shaw Foundation for...

17th Gordon Arthur Ransome Oration: Patient-centred Professionalism

When sickness strikes we all need doctors. People everywhere know that the quality of medical care can affect the outcome and possible consequences of...

Refining Clinical Practice: Transforming Science Research into the Art of Medicine

I am humbled by the invitation given to me by Changi General Hospital to deliver this lecture at your 5th Annual Scientific Meeting with...

Extended-spectrum Beta-lactamases in Clinical Isolates of Escherichia coli and Klebsiella spp. in a Singapore Hospital: Clinical Spectrum

Extended-spectrum beta-lactamases (ESBLs) in gram-negative bacillary pathogens are a growing and important problem in hospital practice and it is tied to extensive use of...

Routine Microbiological Screening in Septic Patients in a Cardiac Surgical Intensive Care Unit

Compared to in-hospital patients, patients treated in an intensive care unit (ICU) have the highest risk of contracting an infection. The risk correlates well...

Medical Education in Asia: Is it a Time for Optimism?

Asia, the largest continent, is also an immensely diverse region with countries that vary in their socio-economic status, degree of urbanisation and health and...

Issues and Priorities of Medical Education Research in Asia

Medical schools traditionally rest on the “three-legged stool” of research, education and service. Hence, medical teachers are sometimes referred to as “triple-threat academicians”. This article...

Genital Herpes in a Sexually-transmitted Infection Clinic in Singapore: A 1-year Retrospective Study

Genital herpes simplex virus (HSV) infection is a commonly notified sexually transmitted infection (STI). Genital herpes can be caused by both herpes simplex virus...

Professionalism: Looking For Your Blind Spots

In 1996 a major breakthrough was reported in the medical literature. A 5-week ectopic pregnancy was re-implanted into the uterus via the cervix, and...

Methodological Aspects of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM)

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a long history but its efficacy is not as well-documented as one would hope. Proof of efficacy has to...

A Practical Way of Research in Chinese Medicine

Chinese medicine individualises its treatment plan and practice and refutes any general law. Therefore, Chinese medicine practitioners do not have the tradition of research. This...

Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and Traditional Chinese Medicine: Time for Critical Engagement

Practice outside of mainstream or conventional medicine has always been an important part of public healthcare in some countries, particularly in the developing world....

Student Academic Committees: An Approach to Obtain Students’ Feedback

The shift of medical curricula from a traditional subject based to an integrated module-based system can be seen in many medical schools worldwide. The...

A Problem-Based Learning Pathway for Medical Students: Improving the Process Through Action Research

Problem-based learning (PBL) is a student-centred, self-directed, integrated and contextual mode of learning. It has been widely perceived by many to confer advantages in...

A Simple Instrument for the Assessment of Student Performance in Problem-based Learning Tutorials

Assessment can be done in a variety of ways, for many purposes, and for different populations. It can occur at the classroom level, programme...

An Online Evaluation of Problem-based Learning (PBL) in Chung Shan Medical University, Taiwan – A Pilot Study

The goal of problem-based learning (PBL) is to motivate students to develop self-learning skills in a small group. PBL embraces principles of good learning...

Evidence-based Medicine in Clinical Curriculum

Evidence-based medicine (EBM) is “the conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of the best evidence in making decisions about the care of individual patients.” Considering...

Leadership and Professionalism Curriculum in the Gross Anatomy Course

Healthcare delivery systems worldwide are currently undergoing significant changes to create resilient learning organisations that are able to adapt with ever-increasing speed to shifting...

Constructing Multiple Choice Questions as a Method for Learning

Students in general and medical students in particular are often described as “strategic learners”, but in reality many become superficial learners out of necessity...

Computer-based Versus Pen-and-paper Testing: Students’ Perception

Computer-based testing (CBT) has gained popularity as a testing modality, with large-scale professional examinations such as the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) adopting...

Curriculum TIPS For All of Us

Medical education is a lifelong learning process. Just as we remind our students and ourselves that the practice of medicine is a lifelong process...

Community-associated Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus: Overview and Local Situation

The emergence and spread of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) isolates from the community that are distinct from their archetypal healthcare-associated counterparts (HA-MRSA) marked a...

Translational Research – A Multidisciplinary Approach

Translational research aims to convert laboratory discoveries into therapeutic gains for patients – in oncology, drug development is a prime example. This multifaceted process...

A Complex, Contagious, Evolutionary Habit

Yawning is often noted in medical seminars and conferences – be they surgical, orthopaedic, gastroenterological, endocrinological or neurological. Yet, this condition receives little coverage...

Amendment of the Human Organ Transplant Act

Kidney transplants have been carried out in Singapore for more than 35 years, with the first cadaveric kidney transplant operation performed on 8 July...

Interesting In- and Outpatient Attendances at Hogwarts Infirmary and St Mungo’s Hospital for Magical Maladies

With the return of “You Know Who” (YKW) and the rise of Death Eaters, injuries amongst both muggle and wizarding folk (MF and WF)...

The Doctor’s Multi-instrument Tool of the Future?

It is just another day in 2020, except that the eyes of the medical world are eagerly awaiting the latest invention to be revealed:...

Relationship Between Item Difficulty and Discrimination Indices in True/False-Type Multiple Choice Questions of a Para-clinical Multidisciplinary Paper

Multiple-choice questions (MCQs) are used more and more in departmental examinations or as comprehensive examinations at the end of an academic session. They may...

Towards a Global Educational Matrix for Tomorrow’s Health Systems

Society supports medical schools expecting them to produce physicians who can improve both the health of the population as well as the health system...

Harnessing the IT Factor in Medical Education

In this digital age, we are constantly inundated with breathtaking images worthy of an Ansel Adams photograph or a Zhang Yimou film. Is it...

A Systems Approach to Teach Core Topics across Graduate Medical Education Programmes

Core curricula including Ethics, Medico-legal issues, Socioeconomics, and Quality Improvement (QI) are relevant and significant for graduate medical education programmes, regardless of specialty. A...

World Federation for Medical Education Policy on International Recognition of Medical Schools’ Programme

There is an increasing need for international quality assurance of medical education. However, there are no present mechanisms for international recognition of medical educational...

Quality Management of Medical Education at the Carl Gustav Carus Faculty of Medicine, University of Technology Dresden, Germany

In Germany, medical education is an undergraduate programme for which the students applying at the “Zentralstelle für die Vergabe von Studienplätzen” (ZVS); the final...

Supporting Learners who are Studying or Training Using a Second Language: Preventing Problems and Maximising Potential

Travel and immigration are vibrant aspects of the international medical and educational field. Patients are increasingly mobile and finding healthcare professionals in a foreign...

Development of a Tool to Evaluate Health Science Students’ Experiences of an Interprofessional Education (IPE) Programme

A shortage of healthcare professionals and resources in rural areas is well documented. These workforce shortages necessitate new models of healthcare in rural areas...

Step-2 Thai Medical Licensing Examination Result: A Follow-up Study

The Center for Evaluating and Accrediting Medical Competency of the Thai Medical Council has established the regulation that Thai medical graduates matriculated as of...

Does Team Learning Motivate Students’ Engagement in an Evidence-based Medicine Course?

Team-based learning (TBL) is a well-defined instructional strategy that has generated considerable interest within the medical education community because of its potential to promote...

A Survey of Medical Students’ Perceptions of the Quality of their Medical Education upon Graduation

Founded in 1934, Tehran University of Medical Sciences School of Medicine (TUMS-SoM) is the oldest modern medical school in Iran. It has the most...

The Learning of 7th Year Medical Students at Internal Medical – Evaluation by Logbooks

In 1945, Taihoku (Taipei) Imperial University was renamed the National Taiwan University and the Japanese teaching system was replaced with a system implemented by...

Use of Knowledge-sharing Web-based Portal in Gross and Microscopic Anatomy

The extensive use of and the rate at which medical technology is becoming an integral force in medicine has impacted on the way in...

Assessment of Psychometric Properties of a Modified PHEEM Questionnaire

In Sri Lanka, after a 5-year medical undergraduate curriculum, graduates from the medical faculties undergo a one year mandatory internship or housemanship, 6 months...

Medical Education in a Flat World

In 2005 Thomas Friedman published the international best-seller The World is Flat: A Brief History of the Twenty-First Century. He asserted that as the...

Objective Structured Clinical Evaluation Should Not Only Be a Test of Clinical Skill

The Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) was originally a test (or summative assessment) specifically of clinical skills, using standardised patients (SP), anatomical models and...

5th College of Physicians Lecture – A Physician’s Odyssey: Recollections and Reflections

Allow me to thank you Mr President and your Council for asking me to deliver the 5th College of Physicians Lecture. Your President has...

Standard Setting in Student Assessment: Is a Defensible Method Yet to Come?

To validate any “adjective”, be it for living or non-living, a criteria or standard is needed. Globalisation, mobility of doctors and the rising number...

Innovative “Case-Based Integrated Teaching” in an Undergraduate Medical Curriculum: Development and Teachers’ and Students’ Responses

In Asia, the challenges facing medical education are similar across different countries. The learning process is still problematic with large classes, and most of...

Assessment of Medical Graduates Competencies

Medical professional proficiency comprises a set of skills, knowledge, and attitudes necessary to efficiently accomplish the practice of medicine. The major aim of undergraduate...

Evidence-based Medicine (EBM) for Undergraduate Medical Students

The practice of evidence-based medicine (EBM), which integrates individual clinical expertise with the best available evidence from systematic research, demands a set of skills....

Transudates in Malignancy: Still a Role for Pleural Fluid

According to Light’s criteria, an exudate is defined by at least one of the following: a total protein pleural fluid to serum ratio greater...

Teaching Biochemistry to Medical Students in Singapore – From Organic Chemistry to Problem-based Learning

The medical faculty in the National University of Singapore was started in 1905 and a Chair in Biochemistry established in 1927. Biochemistry was taught...

Self-directed Learning in Health Professions Education

More than 600,000 new citations were published in MEDLINE in 2005; this raised the total number of indexed citations to more than 14 million...

Sir Gordon Arthur Ransome (1910-1978) – His Teaching Style and His Legacy

Sir Gordon Arthur Ransome was born in Salop, England, in 1910.1 He came to Singapore in 1938, where he taught and practised medicine for...

Translating the Family Medicine Vision into Educational Programmes in Singapore

The core of the Family Medicine (FM) vision is patient-centred care, requiring specific education and vocational training. Modern day FM began its existence as...

Erysipelothrix rhuseopathiae Septicaemia with Prolonged Hypotension: A Case Report

Erysipelothrix sp. is a gram-positive, non-spore forming bacterium that was first isolated by Robert Koch. It has the unusual ability to infect a large...

The Hospitalist Movement – A Complex Adaptive Response to The Hospitalist Movement – A Complex Adaptive Response to Fragmentation of Care in Hospitals

Healthcare systems are complex adaptive systems. They are capable of self organisation through interacting agents that adapt to changes to the internal and external...

Medication Use in the Transition from Hospital to Home

Hospital discharge can be a complex and challenging time for physicians and patients alike. Patients are being discharged sooner, often in the process of...

Family Medicine Education in Singapore: A Long-standing Collaboration between Specialists and Family Physicians

In the US, Canada and Australia, the postgraduate training of family physicians (FPs) involves the attachment of family medicine (FM) trainees to specialist departments,...

Bridging the Gap between Primary and Specialist Care: Formidable Challenges Ahead

The strong guiding hand and deep pockets of the state have brought about the growth of hospitals and national specialist centres while leaving the...

Clinical Skills in Final-year Medical Students: The Relationship between Self-reported Confidence and Direct Observation by Faculty or Residents

In clinical medical education, instructors train students in their medical knowledge and clinical skills. Medical educators also aspire to develop students’ self-confidence in medical...

Evaluation of Intensive Care Unit-acquired Urinary Tract Infections in Singapore

Urinary tract infection (UTI) is one of the most common types of nosocomial infections encountered in the inpatient settings including intensive care unit (ICU)....

Medical Professionalism in the Internet Age

Medical professionalism encompasses the conduct and practices of physicians, both as individuals and as a collective organisation. Professionalism enhances the trust and confidence of...

Developing the “NUS Tummy Dummy”, A Low-Cost Simulator to Teach Medical Students to Perform the Abdominal Examination

Simulators may be used to provide adequate exposure to learning experiences that allow clinical skills to develop, that is, allow medical students and trainees...

Is Cost-Effective Healthcare Compatible with Publicly Financed Academic Medical Centres?

Nearly all legislation involves a weighing of public needs as against private desires; and likewise a weighing of relative social values. —Louis D Brandeis As a...

Cognitive Aspect of Diagnostic Errors

It was an unusually busy ward round. The newly promoted registrar was keen to review the patients handed over to him. But there were...

Academic Medicine Education Institute (AM∙EI): Transforming the Educational Culture of Health Professionals

In 2010, Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School (Duke-NUS) and Singapore Healthcare Services (SingHealth) launched an initiative to improve the lives of patients by combining their...

Diagnosing Bacteraemia Early in Older Adults

Sepsis is a prevalent and important cause of morbidity and mortality in the general population. Approximately 750,000 patients in the United States alone develop...

Factors and experiences associated with unscheduled 30-day hospital readmission: A mixed method study

Readmission leads to a greater demand for healthcare services, especially hospital beds, and contributes to the rising healthcare costs.1,2 With estimated one-third of the...

Potentially avoidable readmissions: Understanding drivers and technology-enabled solutions

Hospital admissions places high resource demands on the health system, and is a major cost-driver in Singapore and globally.1-3 Admissions have and will continue...