Main Theme: Building Resilience as Social Responsibility of Medical Academia
Key Topic - 1: Challenges in a Rapidly Aging Society
As a consequence of the growing proportion of elderly in the population, many countries face transitions to an aging society. With this demographic change, healthcare systems clearly require reforms that move away from the current hospital-centered paradigm of medicine – which focuses on advanced medical treatment and care – to community-centered preventative medicine. We will discuss, in the framework of the trans-disciplinary WHS network, the role of the medical academic community in these healthcare reforms, as well as how it can help predict people’s needs in rapidly aging societies.
Key Topic - 2: Preparedness for & Resilience after Disasters
Disasters and environmental hazards often have major impacts on the lifelong health of the citizens they affect. The most important responsibilities of academic medicine include the accurate prediction of and strategic preparations for health impairments caused by such events. In this second Key Topic, we will discuss roles in specific events that have affected people in Asia during the past several years: the 2013 Typhoon Yolanda, the 2011 earthquake off the Pacific coast of Tohoku, and the rise in PM2.5 air pollution.
In addressing two of the topics above, we will discuss our specific experiences in Japan. The Japanese academic community’s efforts to develop unified approaches through tripartite collaborations with ministries and industry will be presented as “the Japan model.”
Key Topic – 3: Fostering New Leadership
One of academic medicine’s most important missions is to groom the next generation of leaders to play a role in the continuous promotion of global health. We plan to make training program comparisons among M8 Alliance members, and to reexamine the aims and future directions of our medical education systems.
Having the longest life expectancy in the world and a burgeoning elderly population, Japan has transitioned to an aging society well before most other countries. Soon enough, it is likely that other industrialized as well as developing countries will face similar demographic changes. Thus it is our responsibility to summarize, at this WHS Regional Meeting, our efforts directed toward geriatric care in Japan and toward the further re-structuring of healthcare systems in preparation for a rapidly aging society.
Another important issue to focus on at this meeting is the health risks associated with disasters and environmental hazards. Recent devastating natural disasters in Asia (e.g., Typhoon Yolanda in 2013 and the devastating earthquake off the Pacific coast of Tohoku in 2011) are still fresh in our memory and left terrible scars on affected citizens. Environmental hazards such as the increase in air pollution by PM2.5 particulates in newly industrializing countries are threatening public health on the local, national, and global fronts. As members of the M8 Alliance we are committed to take a leading role at the WHS Regional Meeting in developing a unified approach to minimize the physical and mental health consequences of these disasters and hazards.
It is a tremendous privilege to organize the WHS Regional Meeting Asia, Kyoto 2015 in Japan. At this landmark conference we look forward to sharing our thoughts in the hope of promoting rewarding discussions among leaders in their respective fields of expertise.
With warmest regards,
Vice-President, Kyoto University
School of Public Health
The Graduate School of Medicine at Kyoto University was set up in 1899, just two years after the facility was founded, and has made many great contributions to society over the years with its advanced education departments and top-notch research teams. It has produced numerous scholars and medical researchers of the first rank who have in turn churned out a continuous stream of highly original medical treatment and research findings.
The Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine has over 1,300 undergraduate students, 1,000 graduate students, around 440 faculty members and 120 administration staff.
Fukushima Medical University was founded to nurture young medical professionals who will contribute to the future promotion of health, medical care and welfare of the citizens of Fukushima Prefecture. It is also a research institute that seeks to contribute to communities and human welfare by making advances in medicine, nursing and related areas.
Since the 2011 earthquake off the Pacific coast of Tohoku and the subsequent Fukushima power plant disaster, Fukushima Medical University has maintained a close relationship with Kyoto University, and is now also a significant participant in the WHS.
More about Fukushima Medical University