It is a privilege and an honour to be given the responsibility of leading the Academy of Health Professions Educators as its President for 2022. I have been lucky to be associated with this organization since it was a fledgling idea, and have seen it grow from a concept to a functional body. In the process, I have had the opportunity to be mentored by several giants in medical education.
We are at crossroads. Since competency-based medical education has been introduced in a nation-wide process, teachers and institutions have had to adapt quickly and on many fronts. The process includes concepts which the faculty themselves have not experienced as students. So, understandably the journey is expected to be a bumpy ride. Since 2019, a lot of med-ed jargon such as, early clinical exposure, self-directed learning, clerkship, integration, flipped classrooms, simulation-based learning, workplace-based assessment, etc. have been making the rounds. As an Academy we have had the expertise and the opportunity to provide the scaffolding and make these concepts easy to implement. This has been done through regular webinars through the AHPE forum. These webinars are freely accessible through our website. Furthermore, our members have been conducting faculty development programmes both offline and online.
In the last decade, the National Conferences in Health Professions Education (NCHPE) have become a common meeting ground where faculty of all specialities have had the opportunity to air their concerns and get solutions. Each year they are based on a relevant theme, and it is heartening to see the quality of educational research presentations improve. Building this community of practice is an important achievement, for it is through informal interactions that ideas and networks proliferate.
At the AHPE, our endeavour will be to empower our faculty to grow together. There have been attempts to give representation to faculty of all health professions, from different parts of India, and to learn from each other. Newer ideas will always be welcome and we will always look out for enthusiastic faculty to take this journey forward. We intend to work with the regulatory bodies, and represent diverse points of view, because the answers are never in black and white. Academic debates and discussions are a sign of a healthy, growing and aware society.
There are several areas which need our attention. And the quality of medical schools is foremost on our minds. As the numbers of colleges increase, we need to keep tabs on the quality of teaching-learning and assessment. Quality cannot be achieved with minimum faculty, neither can there be shortcuts in this journey. The quest for excellence demands adequate manpower, transparency, delegation of work, accountability, supervision, monitoring and integrity.
I am lucky to have stood on the shoulders of my distinguished predecessors and seen their vision for this Academy. With their guidance and with the support of my accomplished team members, I wish to take small steps towards this dream. We might not be able to achieve it all immediately, but every step in this journey will make a small difference. And therefore each little contribution from the AHPE members matters. Please feel free to reach out to us with fresh ideas and suggestions.
With warm regards,
President, AHPE, 2022