ILDS Summit Bursary Spotlight

6 August 2018

The ILDS has a global reach and is committed to encouraging the participation of Members from all world regions. The ILDS Summit Bursary Programme supported Member representatives who would otherwise not be able to attend the Summit.
Here, Dr Shristi Shrestha from the Society of Dermatologists, Venereologists & Leprologists of Nepal shares her experience of the World Skin Summit in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.

Shristi Shrestha
Dr Shristi Shrestha

When I first read the mail regarding 2nd ILDS Summit I was in a big confusion whether to attend it or not. The thought that it was being held in an Asian country not too far away and the fact that at the next summit I would not be holding this position of President of our national society made me think twice before I rejected. Besides, my colleagues who had attended the 1st ILDS Summit in Berlin had shared wonderful experiences. So, I thought I should attend the summit with the aim of meeting and interacting with dermatologists from developed countries, learning from their experiences and looking for opportunities to collaborate, especially in research. Getting the bursary made my planning easier and when I was asked to give a presentation on the title “Access to Dermatological care in Nepal” I thought my visit is a must. I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to present the real scenario of dermatology care in an underdeveloped country like ours.

There was a feeling of nervousness when I entered the hall the first evening. But I was overwhelmed by the friendly environment present there. Interacting with the distinguished dermatologists from around the world was the greatest achievement. They were so humble and congenial. We talked about the challenges we are facing and the chances of collaboration. In the workshop titled “Removing barriers and increasing access to dermatological care” I listened to the presentations made by representatives from other societies and I realized that the scenario of dermatology care even in developed countries is somewhat similar to ours; like the concentration of dermatologists in the urban areas and the attraction of the younger dermatologists to cosmetology.

For our society, this summit has been a great achievement. We have started a collaboration with one of the societies in research. The other accomplishment of this summit is that after our interaction there we are soon to start a fellowship in collaboration with one of the societies for our young dermatologist.

Unlike the regular conferences and congress we attend, there was not much of presentations on dermatology diseases in this summit but it was a great forum to learn about the other aspect of dermatology. It was a great opportunity to know what ILDS is doing for the upliftment of dermatology in the world. So, it gave me a feeling that our society as part of ILDS must give its best to fulfil the aim of improving skin health globally.

Lastly my sincere gratitude to ILDS for providing me this bursary to attend this memorable event.