Importance of research in dentistry highlighted

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International conference at UHS

Importance of research in
dentistry highlighted

LAHORE: The Oral Biology Department of University of Health Sciences (UHS), Lahore, organized a 2-day international conference in collaboration with Pakistan Association of Orthodontists, Pakistan Dental Association and COMSATS on October 25-26. The theme of the conference was “Translating Research Evidence into Dental Practice”. Over 500 scholars, researchers and dentists from UK, Saudi Arabia and Pakistan participated in the conference.

International Association of Dental Research (IADR) is a leading international organization providing platform to dental researchers all over the world since 1920. The objectives of PADR are to promote research culture among dental community in Pakistan, to promote ethics, art and science of dentistry, to provide platform to exchange cutting-edge research ideas and support members to provide high quality professional oral care. Currently, active clinicians and researchers including Dr. Imran Rahbar (Fatima Memorial Hospital, Lahore), Dr. Arshad Hasan (Dow Dental College, Karachi), Dr. Farhan Raza (Aga Khan University), Dr. Muhammad Amber Fareed (Fatima Memorial Hospital, Lahore), Dr. Sarah Ghafoor (University of Health Sciences, Lahore), Dr. Adeela Rafique (Fatima Memorial Hospital, Lahore), and Dr. Abdul Samad Khan (COMSATS IIT, Lahore) are members of its executive body.

The guest speakers at the conference included Dr Syed Ali Khurrum, a clinician based at University of Sheffield, UK, Dr. Kashif Hafeez from Royal Society of Edinburgh, Dr. Sobia Bilal from International Medical University, Malaysia, Dr. RabiaTassaduq of New York  University, USA, and  Dr. Amjad Wyne from King Saud University Saudi Arabia. Beside 11 sessions, the conference featured pre-conference and post-conference workshops, 70 oral presentations, 45 poster presentations and an exhibition of various technical, clinical and research based-items.

In addition to the general session, there were Basic Sciences and Clinical Hands-on Pre-Conference and Post conference workshops. The two Pre-conference workshops were held in UHS on 24th October. These included one on “Advanced Biostatistics, Questionnaire validation, Project and Scientific writing skills” in which the participants learned study design, article writing skills, and statistical parameter evaluation. 

The other Pre-conference workshop was on diagnostic treatment planning in Orthodontic and different wire–bending techniques The post-conference workshop included diagnostic interpretation of the head and neck cancer pathology, microscopic sessions and discussion and was facilitated by Dr. Richard Allibone and Prof. Mohammad Ilyas from University of Nottingham UK.

Addressing at the inaugural ceremony of the conference, the VC Punjab University, Prof Mujahid Kamran said that investing on research and creation of new knowledge was the need of the hour.“We, the Pakistanis, have become an excellent ‘resource wasting machine’.There is no dearth of money. The only issue is that we haven’t been able to set our priorities so far”, The country needed ‘visionary and wise’ leadership, he remarked.

He further said that the United States with a GDP around 16 trillion dollars, allocated 5-7 per cent of its budget for education whereas that spending in Pakistan was only 2 per cent of the GDP. Pakistan only spent 0.1 per cent of its budget on research and development and was amongst the last four countries of the world as far as spending on health was concerned.

UHS Vice Chancellor, Maj Gen (Retd) Prof Muhammad Aslam said the globalization of knowledge was no longer a trend but a priority for institutions and research centers, allowing knowledge to be shared by all and making technology available to all professionals. He was of the view  that oral health was an integral part of general health and wellbeing and a basic human right.  Many oral diseases were preventable and considerable improvements could be made if appropriate public health programmes were established.

“Because the oral environment is part of the human biologic system that changes every day, clinicians must understand the biology of the individual as they apply any kind of diagnostic for treatments or preventatives.(PR)