Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting (APRM)
The annual Asia-Pacific Regional Meeting (APRM) has been a platform for medical students from our region to assemble in sharing and exchanging ideas, experiences and most importantly to be better health professionals in the future. From the 30th of June till the 4th of July 2018, the largest and most diverse attendance APRM with 233 medical students from 17 Asia Pacific NMOs and 4 other NMOs convened in the Republic of Korea to discuss health issues that impact us all especially mental health as the theme event. The hosting NMO, Korean Medical Students’ Association had been preparing this meeting for over six months along with the Asia Pacific Regional Team and IFMSA Team of Officials to wrap all these great workshops, trainings and a whole slew of activities.This meeting was a bit different compared to my previous experiences in attending such event. I tried to contribute myself to the fullest by becoming a part of the Session’s Team and also becoming the TNT Trainer for the pre-APRM which held right before the main event. I, Ashandi Triyoga, represented University of Jember together with the other 19 delegates from both CIMSA and ISMKI, we started the meeting with an opening ceremony wrapped up in modern Korean pop culture performances and opening speech by some Korean health professionals as well as IFMSA representatives at a different venue from the main one which is located in Southeast of the city center, Seoul Olympic Parktel. Each day, we started our day with a morning agenda on Standing Committee sessions in which each standing committee offers various kind of sessions based on its field of work and regional priorities. In addition, some of our delegates also appointed as the Session Team member to help the Regional Assistants on maintaining the session including myself. I got the opportunity to assist Alex Shang (RA SCOPH Asia-Pacific – FMS Taiwan) particularly in delivering the NCDs session in SCOPH. Not to mention a special session for the NMO Presidents where they discuss organizational matters including the first Asia-Pacific Regional Strategy and Regional IOGs. Other than that, some other agendas like Joint Event, Training sessions, Theme Event and Activities Fair also took place in each different day.
With a large group energised and filled with excitement, all the 20 Indonesian delegates showed our remarkable presences throughout the event. One of the highlights was our tremendous participation in Activities Fair in which 4 of our local activities were chosen out of 22 other NMO’s in total. The presented activities were PREDICTION (MSCIA UB), SWAN (CIMSA UNS), EINSTEIN and BRAKERS (CIMSA BEM KM FK UNAND). Even though we did not win any of the official awards, the judges and many participants were interested and praised our projects in a great manner. On the following night, we proudly showed our local and authentic traditional foods and drinks with sambal and bajigur as the superstars in our booth at the National Food and Drinking Party. Besides the food and drinks, we also dressed in a traditional Javanese outfits to perform our special cultural performance afterwards. Balinese pendet and kecak became our opening kickoff followed by other dances including maumere and oplosan as an entertaining closing.
This meeting would not complete without the existence of the theme event itself. Mental health has been a widely discussed issue recently, especially with regards to suicide prevention these days. Thus, the two chosen topics were Gender Violence and Suicide. Some external speakers were invited to discuss those two pertinent topics, they are Hyoung-Yoon Chang, MD, PhD, MPH from Department of Psychiatry, Ajou University School of Medicine Sunflower Center of Southern Gyeonggi for Women and Children Victims of Violence and Hanson Park, M.D and Jong-Woo Paik M.D., PhD. as General Secretary of Korea Association for Suicide Prevention(KASP).
In closing, APRM was one of the warmest and best meeting where we not only gain experiences but also a family in guarantee. So, let’s feel the vibe and join the event yourself next year in Hong Kong! Gamsa Hamnida ☺