Afghan healthcare professionals around the globe
5th March 2011
Minutes of Afghan Medical Association (AMA) meeting Saturday March the 5th 2011
Afghan Medical Association (AMA) annual meeting was held in London on March the 5th. The meeting was started with the recitation of holy Quran by Dr Abdul Hameed Latifi. Then Dr Qasim Ibrahimi, chairman of AMA, shed light on brief history, activities and future plans of AMA. Dr Ibrahimi said: It is a privilege to introduce our respected guest Dr Ahmad Zia, a surgeon with 24 years of experience. He has achieved his postgraduate degrees including FRCS here in the UK. He holds FCPS. He has worked as a consultant surgeon in Afghanistan, UAE and Peshawar. He currently works at as surgeon in Kent. He helped me back in 2003 when I travelled on behalf of AMA-UK to Afghanistan and met with the officials of public health and Nangarhar University”
Ibrahimi then added: “Afghan Medical Association (AMA) UK was established in March 2003 by the Afghan health care professionals residing in the UK Â He summarised some achievements of AMA as following:
Facilitating clinical attachments to a number of Afghan doctors who successfully passed PLAB Training sessions for interview techniques On-line PLAB part-one materials during 2003-2006 on our previous website. Establishing contacts with GMC, department of health, royal colleges and BMA Open day meeting in December 2004 with attendance of more than 50 Afghan health care professionals, intellectuals and journalists. Financial assistance to victims of floods in the region in 2010 by the leadership of AMA-UK Launching a new project, Health information for Afghans; the aim of the project is to establish an on-line resource information centre about various diseases for Afghans in local languages (Pashto and Farsi). Currently our team is working hard to provide preliminary materials for the project and eventually the materials will be posted onto our website.
He concluded his speech with:
“We have a database of Afghan doctors here in the UK but we are working rigorously to expand this beyond the borders of the UK. Our medium and long term goal is to provide professional help to Afghan doctors and work towards the reconstruction of the health care system in Afghanistan. We are planning to build a hospital in Afghanistan where we could contribute to a great extent. In order to achieve this, our management committee has established contacts with some Afghan businessmen who are willing to contribute financially. The committee might travel to Afghanistan to view the a possible site for hospital”
Health information for Afghans project was briefly introduced to participants. Majority of the participants congratulated the initiative of health information for Afghans by the AMA. Two new volunteers, Dr Abdullah Abdul Rahimzai and Dr Sher Muhammad, joined the project. AMA appreciated their enthusiasm and dedication. Some members suggested a new project for Afghan doctors residing in Afghanistan. It was suggested that short term courses such as communication skills, basic life support etc should be organised by AMA inside Afghanistan. This was viewed as valuable and necessary; however, the practicality, resources and the team to run this project yet to be decided.
The design of AMA website was showed to the meeting.
It was agreed upon that the next general assembly will be held late summer 2011 but date and venue yet to be decided.
Although not in the agenda, as per suggestion of some participants, unity of all Afghan health professionals was discussed extensively. AMA management believes in working together in unity based on mutual respect and it was delighted to see similar intention of amongst non-member participants.
In principle, all participants both members and non-members agreed to work under one umbrella. In AMA view, AMA is already an established association with more than seven years of history and activities. The position of AMA is to have one united association. In our view this umbrella is Afghan Medical Association.
After a lenghty discussion, it was overwhimingly decided to form an advisory group of 3 senior Afghan doctors who are not member of AMA. The group included Dr Ahmad Zia, Dr Abdul Ghafoor Rahim and Dr Sayed Mohammad Saeed. The duty of the advisory group was to find solutions and present its recommendations for the unity between the AMA and organisers of March the 26th meeting. 95% of paerticipants voted in favour of forming the advisory group but one person voted against the idea. One ‘NO’ vote resulted to the fact that advisory group didn’t want to discuss the matter any further.
However, in order to reach out to all non-member Afghan health care professionals and have a united structure, AMA management insisted to reach to an agreement and it was suggested to hold continuous dialogue and communication. Therefore, the following were agreed upon unanimously by AMA members and non-members:
1: AMA management to send its manifesto to all Afghan health care professionals.
2: Holding an informal meeting in the 2nd or 3rd week of March between AMA management and the main organisers of March the 26th meeting. This meeting should be held well before March the 26th.
The meeting was concluded by dinner prepared by AMA and Afghan music performance by AMA member Dr Persalay Bakhtani.
Dr Quasim Ibrahimi
Dr Ahmad Zia
Dr Abdul Ghafoor Rahim
Dr Abdullah Sayed
Dr Abdul Wahab Ghani
Dr Abdul Hameed Latifi
Dr Nazar Mohammed Kochai
Dr Enayat Mudasser
Dr Sher Muhammad Naiwand
Dr Sayed Iqbal Miakhil
Dr Shir Ahmad Alokozai
Dr Khesrow Sangarwal
Dr Hamed Yar
Dr Aman Shams
Dr Pesarlay Bakhtani
Dr Fazel Mahmood Fazly
Dr Omar Safi
Javed Turab, representative from Afghan Student Union in the UK
Abdul Rahman, webdesigner and IT specialist
Apologies received from the following
Dr Shakiba Omari
Dr Ajmal Sartoor
Dr Khalil Wahdati
Dr Abdul Qayyum
Dr Jawad Zelamal
Dr Humayun Shahpesandy
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