Updated: May 16, 2019
Dear Friends and Colleagues,
Together with my colleagues at the Asia Pacific Association of Allergy Asthma and Clinical Immunology (APAAACI), I wish you have been having a happy, healthy early months of 2019.
I am humbled, honored and privileged to assume the role of President of APAAACI and deeply grateful to my predecessors, Frank Thien and Hee Bom Moon for their leadership and outstanding contributions to the organization during their presidencies, as well as to the members of the Executive Committee and Board. I am inspired by their commitment and all of their achievements including the highly successful APAAACI journal led by Editor-in-Chief, Yoon Seok Chang and the Congress APAAACI 2018 held under the Presidency of Frank Thien jointly with APAPARI and hosted by the AAIAT. We are deeply indebted to the LOC headed by Kiat Ruxrungtham, Wasu Kamchaisatian and the local SPC led by Pakit Vichyanond for their devotion and dedication along with the APAAACI and APAPARI teams that led to a scientifically, culturally and socially an outstanding congress of the highest scientific standards in the most collegial ambience.
Allergic diseases are rising at a rapid pace to epidemic proportions globally. Asia is the largest continent in the global landscape. With a rapidly urbanizing, industrializing and economically growing region propelled with the changing environment and life styles and increased air pollution, our region bears the biggest burden of allergic diseases.
As the regional organization for adult and pediatric allergies, APAAACI has a huge role to play in addressing this issue by increasing the knowledge base, providing the evidence of disease burden, characterizing and mapping triggering allergens and factors, disease phenotypes, thus forming the base for the region specific consensus and guidelines.
In this endeavor, I am joined by my colleagues on the Executive Committee and Board including President-Elect Jiu Yao Wang, Past President Frank Thien, 1st Vice President Takao Fujisawa, 2nd Vice President Amir HA Latiff, Secretary General Yoon-Seok Chang, Treasurer Luo Zhang; our members at large including Bernard Thong, Ho Joo Yoon, Iris Rengannis, TF Leung, Wasu Kamchaisatian; and the many committees that will propel in raising the scientific and clinical practice standards base for the region towards our goals. With their continued support and that of our National Member Societies, I am confident that we will be steadfast in addressing the pressing challenges, and we will be able to accomplish the many goals set out within the the larger allergy, asthma and clinical immunology community.
In order to address this escalating major health challenge that threatens health and economies alike, it is important to have an action plan, and one that include partnerships involving different stakeholders from countries at all economic levels. We are active in supporting areas with limited resources and addressing this issue
Key elements that will drive our efforts
1. Regionalization within the global platform and Integrating with the development of an Allergy Action Plan.
2. Collaborating, communicating and being inclusive: Multi-disciplinary teams involving multi specialty interactions, policymakers, other global organizations, advocacy groups, medical professionals of other disciplines, academia, primary care physicians, patients and industry.
3. Prioritizing: Focus on key areas of education and training, undergraduate and post-graduate training, and dissemination of evidence-based information on critical topics including drug allergy, severe asthma, occupational allergy, severe allergies, chronic rhino sinusitis, and others.
4. Harmonization and Interaction with global bodies like the WHO and UN and regulatory bodies to raise the standards of practice and provide a common base and standardized platform across the countries in the region.
5. Investing and Empowering the future: We will invest in developing the future for allergy through empowering our junior members.
6. Remembering our History and Moving towards the future: This year 2019, is very special in that it marks the 30th anniversary of APAAACI since its establishment in 1989. We are proud to celebrate the 30th Anniversary from Sept 5-7 in Beijing jointly with the Chinese Society of Allergy (apaaaci2019.csallergy.org ). This will also be the moment to recognize our predecessors and their contributions and we will launch the APAAACI History Book edited by Frank Thien and Hee Bom Moon
Ruby Pawankar, MD, Ph.D,