Tuesday, May 30, 2023

[Public Lecture] The 59th Dr. Jose P. Rizal Memorial Lecture - Philippine Medical Association

On May 18, 2023, I delivered the 59th Dr. Jose P. Rizal Memorial Lecture of the Philippine Medical Association, in a ceremony held in Manila Hotel. My lecture was titled "Rizal’s Enduring Relevance for Medicine in the Philippines: Nature, Culture, Innovation, and Empowerment" and reflected on lessons from the Rizal's medical practice and way of life that resonate with the experiences and challenges faced by medical practitioners today. The abstract of the talk is as follows: 

Jose Rizal (1861-1896) was an ophthalmologist and general practitioner who, by virtue of his exemplary medical career, is often invoked as one of the pioneers of health care in the country. Less examined, however, is the relevance of the Philippine national hero’s broader ideas for medicine and public health. In this lecture, I survey the life and works of Rizal to identify four major themes - nature, culture, innovation, and empowerment - in which his philosophy and practice hold resonances and valuable insights for the country’s heath care system. Taken together, Rizal’s vida y obra gestured towards a holistic, ecological, culturally-sensitive, and modern approach to medicine: one that viewed patients not as passive recipients of charity but as agents of their health and well-being. 

The lecture was attended by PMA officials and recipients and nominees of the Dr. Jose P. Rizal Memorial Awards including DOH OIC Maria Rosario Vergeire and PMA President Maria Minerva Calimag. Previous Dr. Jose P. Rizal Memorial Orators including Ambeth Ocampo, Michael Tan, Antonio Oposa, Howie Severino, Xiao Chia, among others. 

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