__MAIN_TEXT__

Page 1

UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES MEDICAL ALUMNI SOCIETY

VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020

THE GOLDEN JUBILARIANS ON STRADDLING TWO WORLDS

TOUCH--MOVES AND TOUCHED LIVES

Doctors and Artists:

By Jorge L. Padilla, Class 1996

Dr. Arthur Alban Dr. Jay Estoya Dr. Pinky Genuino

GRATITUDE

upmas board upmas awardees 2020

UPCM Class of 1995: 25 Years of Leadership and Excellence


VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

here were 74 of us. All bright-eyed, zealous, and eager to learn more. All wanting to start our post-graduation grand adventure in the big world. It was 1970—the last part of the Vietnam War—and the United States of America was still looking for English-speaking doctors to fill the still-gaping hole left by the medics who had signed up for the war. And so, most of us ended up in the US to pursue our specialty training. Many of us finished our training after eight years. Some remained single and focused on their careers while others had met the loves of their lives, started families, and went on to the next chapter. My next chapter was to be experienced back in my homeland, the Visayas, where there was only one hematologist (my subspecialty) and no plastic reconstructive surgeon (my husband’s subspecialty). We had one son, aged one year. It was 1978. But there was a little bump on the road. Two years later, I was diagnosed with Gestational Trophoblastic Disease (Invasive Hydatidiform Mole). I underwent total hysterectomy, received chemotherapy, lost all my hair, and survived! No one can say if it was that experience, but certain things began to surface in my soul. “Life is short. Life is unpredictable. Help people find life.” At age 36, I was given “strange” happenings which I could only interpret this way: I was being “nudged” to change my career path. It was a “gentle push” to consider a shift from medicine—where I brought “outer change” to patients—to something that would allow me to instead help people find “inner change and outer purpose”. I had no idea what that meant. Putting it succinctly, I found myself training for the ministry and being taught and mentored by learned, yet inspiring and uplifting persons whom I thought of as “spiritual giants.”

PAGE 1

DECEMBER 2020

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

Fast forward. At age 46, I left my medical practice and my position in the College of Medicine. If my memory serves me right, that position was Assistant Professor of Medicine (Hematology). I then became part of the shepherding team of a church, where I have been for the past 28 years. I’m often asked: Do I have any regrets that I left medicine? And my answer is no. I think my having been a doctor was part of the training that I had to go through to understand people and their needs. I liken it to Moses having had to grow up in the palace in Egypt as the adopted son of Pharaoh’s daughter, so he would know how to deal with Pharaoh and speak the language when the time came. But his final call from God was to bring the Hebrew people out of Egypt. So I feel medicine was not a “wrong path”; in fact, it was the “right path” for the first 30 years. Medicine was where I learned to value demanding and in-depth study, to go beyond the body’s need for sleep, to rise above obstacles and encumbrances, and to ground myself in keeping one’s focus until the goal is reached. Medicine was also where I understood the only visible component of the human being—the body. That way, I could coordinate it better with the rest of the unseen parts that make up a person and link them up with their roles: the heart, soul, and mind. As Jesus once said, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength [physical body].” And most importantly, medicine was where I discovered that I had been given the gift of teaching.


VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

While we were there, one of the places we visited was a small quaint tea shop on a narrow side road behind Raffles Hotel. It was a “Hey, this looks like an interesting place—let’s go in and take a look?”-type of decision. When we entered, as expected we saw tea sets and different types of teas from different continents. And at the end of our short visit, one of us bought a small can of tea leaves. The Singaporean store owner took our item, went to the backroom to look for a box, came back to her table, placed our can of tea leaves in the box, wrapped the box in thin black Japanese paper, and then she wrapped it again using wrapping paper with a beautiful ethnic design. Lastly, Lastl she placed a ribbon. store? In all honesty, we felt annoyed at the lengthy wait. Ten long minutes just to wrap one small item! We thought of shops in Cebu or Manila, where a saleslady would have simply snappily shoved it into a plastic bag, stapled the receipt on, and accomplished the whole process in five seconds! On the other hand, however, we were intrigued! Why so much ceremony for such a small can of tea leaves? And so much added expense on the part of the And so we asked: “Excuse me, why did you take so much trouble to wrap it twice and then tie it with a ribbon?” And this is what she said: “You honored us by spending your hard-earned money to buy something from our store, and so the least we could do is to honor you back by wrapping your item with care.” Long silence. From us. She was Asian. We were Asian, too, but we came to realize that in our understanding of honor, we were no longer Asian. We had become Western. And we realized that we no longer knew how to recognize that we were being honored—even if it was happening in our midst. John Ortberg once said, “The ability to assign value is one of the rarest and most precious gifts in the world.” And we realized we had lost that ability. We also recognized that sometimes, the way we think about the practice of medicine is no longer Eastern. We think practicing medicine is simply providing a commodity purchased in exchange for money.

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

In 1991, William Hurt played the role of Dr. Joseph McKee, a successful cardiothoracic surgeon, in a movie entitled “The Doctor.” In one scene, a middle-aged female patient comes into the surgeon’s clinic for a post-operative check-up. She has a fresh scar on her chest. Dr. McKee looks at the scar, and in the presence of the clinic nurse, the conversation goes this way:

DECEMBER 2020

FEMALE PATIENT: “ Doctor, my husband… he’s a good man, and he—I think he’s a little nervous. My scar… will it always be so…?” DR. MCKEE: “Tell your husband, you look like a Playboy centerfold. You have the staple marks to prove it! Ha-ha-ha.” Why does the doctor say things that simply succeed in entertaining those within earshot (his clinic nurse) but bring no comfort whatsoever to the patient? Did he forget that the patient honored him by choosing him to take care of her and by entrusting her life to him? And that he owes it to her to honor her back by giving her the dignity she deserves as a human being? Sometimes, we are asked: What was the highlight of your years at the UP College of Medicine? For me, it was that day we labeled our graduation day. For many of us, that was the day when our ideals reached their humanitarian peak, their altruistic pinnacle. We had dreams of serving others, of alleviating pain; for some of us, of helping the poor. And we remember that moment when we recited the Hippocratic oath, summarized and abbreviated into six simple words: Cure sometimes. Heal often. Comfort always. And starting that day, added in front of our baptismal name was a new name. That name was “Doctor.” That name was to accompany our given name for the rest of our life. And that name came with a promise. A promise to be: noble in that we would aspire to be noble, someone whose life reflects lofty principles and an elegant spirit; meticulous in that we would be meticulous, thorough, and pay attention to detail because we know that it is essential and necessary for one to be able to give life to one’s patient; and caring and approachable, in that we would be compassionate, so that our patients could speak to us about their concerns and their worries without feeling intimidated by our title or our position in society.

PAGE 2


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

DECEMBER 2020

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

Artwork by Dr. Arthur Alban

Artwork by Dr. Jay Estoya

Artwork by Dr. Jay Estoya

Artwork by Dr. Arthur Alban PAGE 3


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020

Artwork by Dr. Arthur Alban

UPCM Class 1996 ay finished his training in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the Philippine General Hospital. He is now a faculty member at the University of St. La Salle-College of Medicine in Bacolod City and a consultant at the CLMM Regional Hospital in Negros Occidental. Presently, Dr. Estoya is a Board Member-examiner of the Philippine Board of Plastic Surgery (PBPS). Jay paints in his spare time. In Jay’s words, “Without exception, this pandemic has brought the doctors to the frontline in the battle against COVID-19.

Not just preventing and treating the virus, but doctors took the role in educating the public about the science of the disease, often struggling to rectify fake news and conspiracy theories. However, it reckons the fact that the good physician needs to survive the threat to his/her own health and also to survive the preoccupation to surmount the reality of a failing economy. Three paintings during the time of the lockdown exemplifies the physician as a health worker, a concerned citizen, and a provider to his/her family.”

PAGE 4


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

UPCM Class 2006, UP PGH Department of Pediatrics

I have always had an affinity for art since I was young. I would attribute this affinity likely to my fascination with animation, which was popular in my generation. There has been a desire to use color in a blank piece of paper to recreate images I see on screen. I would buy Funny comics sold back in the ’80s and I would usually end up copying or tracing illustrations from there. During high school, joining poster-making contests and winning from time to time made me consider that perhaps I do have some talent for the visual arts. When the time for applying for a college degree drew near, fine arts came across as an alternative path in choosing a profession, but circumstances in my life eventually led to the path towards pursuing medicine. Since then, I did not think of art as something that I would be doing for a living. As for when I realized that I had that artistic flair, there would be a few factors such as those I shared earlier. But I would say that I truly embraced the idea that I am an artist a few years after my first child was born, and I had been relatively active in sharing my works on social media. Looking back at the pieces that I made, all of them would date back to early 2013. So perhaps something changed in my brain chemistry after becoming a father. Also, social media democratized one’s ability to exhibit works that an artist creates. Thus, knowing that a number of people appreciate my work fueled that desire to create further. It was indeed encouraging. In my mind, I know that I have this talent, but the validation that I got from my family and friends motivated me to do more. So now, I am consistently putting my work out there in my social media space. I guess these things made me realize my “when.”

PAGE 5

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

DECEMBER 2020

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

Multimedia piece, Clown 2

PAGE 6


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

DECEMBER 2020

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

What inspires you?

Dr. Johanna Adevoso Canal PRESIDENT, Class 1995 I don’t know how to say no... which means that I am over-scheduled and overworked much of the time... but the thought of being able to make a difference is so appealing to me that I can’t resist. I must be sick in the head.

Dr. Aldwin Alfonso Yaneza Class 1991 As a practitioner, I always seek an opportunity to be a blessing to my patients, more so to those who have less in life. I work in a government medical facility where I perform surgery on indigent patients. I draw inspiration when patients are on their last hospital day prior to discharge after a successful outcome and so eager to return home. Let this be a reminder to me that there is an art to medicine as well as science and that warmth, sympathy, and understanding may outweigh the surgeon's knife.

Dr. Melendre Araos Class 1969 Where I am now, at 76, a senior citizen, a retiree, a widow, a former political detainee during the Marcos regime, a mother to six, a grandmother ten times over, a golden jubilarian as of 2019, I'm being asked what inspires me? What could inspire me during a pandemic? What could inspire me with all the calamities around? What could inspire me to promise a better place to live in? In this pandemic, life almost came to a halt. As we faced challenges from day to day, our reactions varied from fear to panic, anger, frustration, and feelings of uncertainty. The effects are so devastating as to paralyze our dreams and those of our children and grandchildren. The pandemic has brought out the worst in some people who took advantage of

PAGE 7

Dr. Gladz Facun Class 2011 I am inspired by people who think out of the box, those who are not afraid to speak out their minds. I am inspired by people who genuinely listen and open opportunities for their colleagues, both young and old. I am inspired by people who acknowledge that by doing so, there can be continued growth and improvement.

the situation. On the other hand, it has brought out the best in others. And this is what inspires me. The young batch of medical interns volunteered to help the frontliners even if they were allowed to leave for their safety. Our young doctors and nurses bravely and selflessly cared for our COVID patients knowing the dangers of doing so. Our faculty are working doubly hard to face the current challenges of medical education. I was overwhelmed with pride and joy to see my own daughter organize her staff, friends, and family to get donors and volunteers to provide meals for frontliners. The spontaneous outpouring of help, big or small, was awe-inspiring. Life, after all, did not come to a halt, and we can dream again. These images send a signal that there is hope for a better tomorrow, and our younger generation has shown that they can do it! And even better than I could have ever imagined.


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020

What inspires you? Dr. Pipo Ronque Class 2000 I am inspired by people who are genuinely caring and courageous, who help others cope and succeed.

What is a memorable moment from your UPCM days?

Dr. Eric Amante Class 1996 I am inspired by magnanimous people who are full of empathy, faith, hope, and love.

Dr. Ina Pelaez-Crisologo Class 1997 One of our first clinical rotations in third year was surgery. Eager beaver ICCs pa kami. While interviewing a patient to obtain her history, I noted that she didn’t have any more teeth. My blockmates and I couldn’t figure out what the proper term was. And so in my notes (that later went into her chart), I wrote in tiny letters, “(+) bungal.” The next day, while doing rounds with our residents, I was called out by Dr. JV Prodigalidad (Hi, Sir!), “You did mean ‘edentulous,’ right? (sabay tawa)” Ayun, ‘yun na nga. Wala pa naman kasing Google ‘nun.

Dr. Lali Alentajan-Aleta Class 1996 As a first-year medical student, having to do a complete neurologic exam on ten patients because I failed the practical exam. Twice. (Many thanks to Dr. Ramiro for being so kind and for passing me)

PAGE 8


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

Dr. Johanna Patricia Canal ’95 – President Dr. Nemencio Nicodemus ‘95 – Vice President Dr. Lilibeth Genuino ’87 - Executive Director Dr. Lara Alentajan-Aleta ‘96 -Secretary Dr. Eric Amante ‘96 – Treasurer Dr. Ina Crisologo ’97 – PRO Dr. Elizabeth Arcellana-Nuqui ‘70 Dr. Melen Araos ‘69 Dr. Aldwin Yaneza ‘81 Dr. Maxie Escano ‘97 Dr. Deborah David-Ona ‘98 Dr. Gladdy Facun ‘11 Dr. Jean Toral ’94 – Immediate Past President

PAGE 9

DECEMBER 2020


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020

PAGE 10


used to play chess in grade school. I was unbeatable amongst my siblings

PAGE 11


The UPMAS Record VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020

BY JOHANNA PATRICIA A. CAÑAL, MD, MHA, MSC, UPCM CLASS OF 1995 fter internship, the members of the class had a love-hate relationship with UPCM and PGH. The twin institutions represented sleepless nights, the most stressful days, and what we thought was the best of our youth spent in the service of others. Some of us swore never to go back. We suspect it is or was the same for many graduates. Trauma? Fatigue? Whatever reason people had, UP and PGH do not normally incite warm fuzzy feelings— until time intervenes. Time heals all wounds, they say. Bad memories fade and the human brain insists on holding on to the most positive memories.

With the best memories comes gratitude, the overwhelming mood of UPCM 1995 in this their 25th year out of medical school. With gratitude comes the dedication of 3 orchid species to humankind. Last January, Aerides turma and Aerides turma anniversarius were introduced to the world. Discovered in the forests of northern Mindanao, the first was dedicated to UPCM Class 1995 while the second was in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the graduation of the class. Last December 8, a third discovered species was introduced to the world

PAGE 12


UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES MEDICAL ALUMNI SOCIETY

VOLUME 30 ISSUE 2

INSPIRE MAGAZINE

DECEMBER 2020

UPCM CLASS 1970 CELEBRATES ITS GOLDEN ANNIVERSARY

Profile for INSPIRE UPCM

UPCM InSPIRE Volume 30 Issue 2 - The UPMAS Record  

This is a special pull-out issue of the University of the Philippines Medical Alumni Society's publication - The UPMAS Record.

UPCM InSPIRE Volume 30 Issue 2 - The UPMAS Record  

This is a special pull-out issue of the University of the Philippines Medical Alumni Society's publication - The UPMAS Record.

Advertisement