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Year : 2002  |  Volume : 36  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 62-64
Presidential Address

Nagpur, India

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How to cite this article:
Babhulkar S S. Presidential Address. Indian J Orthop 2002;36:62-4

How to cite this URL:
Babhulkar S S. Presidential Address. Indian J Orthop [serial online] 2002 [cited 2019 Dec 7];36:62-4. Available from:
Respected Chief Guest, Dignitaries on the dais, and guests from abroad, delegates, and members of media, ladies and gentleman.

My dear colleagues, I am fully aware, that I am humbly standing before you as the President of this august body, only due to love, affection and grand confidence reposed in me by you all. Like my predecessors I too dawned the crown of president ship with "Dreams Unlimited" in the eyes, challenge of the daunting task in the mind, and throbbing enthusiasm in my heart. How far I have succeeded in my goal is to be evaluated by you.

The world hates changes but believe me, change is the spice of life, and it is the only thing that brings progress. In tune with this saying, in last eleven months I have humbly tried my best to insinuate the change in the academic and working scenario of our organisation. We need various committees for functioning of the organization. It is not the quantity, but quality, which is important. Early diagnosis and prompt treatment is the quaintness of success, which would guarantee good quality of life to the patient. Hence this years IOA slogan " Not Life, but quality of Life" is in tune with the above idea. I have tried to streamline the activities of various committees. A dedicated sense of commitment is vital.

Academic Activities

Today the knowledge in the field of orthopaedics, like all branches of Medicine is growing fast. It can be compared to the mythical " Hydra - - monster", which grew two fearsome heads for every one cut off. This fast accelerating knowledge explains the era of superspecialists to ultra-specialist. Hence various teaching programmes, updates, and workshops are necessary. Though I have tried to modulate these activities, I strongly feel the need for a direct, central control of IOA, over these so­called "Academic Bonanzas". Moreover, all these activities should get proper accreditation by MCI, to promote more participation and certification.

Orthopaedic Training & Education

The orthopaedic surgeon takes care of nearly all parts of the body that are concerned with voluntary movements. The field is very wide one. Injuries and diseases of bones, joints and muscles require orthopaedic attention. Hence today's education must be broad based which should include basic sciences, internal medicine, surgery & biomechanics, apart from orthopaedics. Orthopaedic surgeon need first to be physician, secondly surgeon and finally orthopaedic surgeon.
"Paucity in the land of plenty", this axiom aptly describes our specialty. Our hospitals are overburdened with patients while there is proportional scarcity of resident doctors, with resultant lacunae in quality care. Residents are providing more care while having less time for education. Unfortunately, to increase number of residents is in the hands of Government & hospital authority. We are currently in a crisis over the dual role of residents, providing orthopaedic care and orthopaedic education.

Residents are more treated as trainees or employees for patients care. Education costs money and is not profitable. The difference between training and education is fundamental when dealing with issues of quality. Though training is equally important, what is more important is education. Howard Hatcher used to stay "You train dogs and educate men". W.F. Enneking quotes "the concept of training is one of repetitive practice until a skill is mastered, while an educational experience embraces the observational outcome of applying rational principles based on scientific concepts." Our residents have become surgical assistants. They are perfect technocrats, but they are deficient in applying judgment and rational principles based on scientific knowledge. Education is the mission of educational institutes and organizations like ours. Providing care is the mission of hospitals. We the leaders of our specialty and educational organization must stop this seemingly irreversible erosion of educational mission.

The most important competencies of orthopaedic surgeons are in patient care, surgical skills, medical knowledge, communication skills, ethics, and professionalism. Making of perfect orthopaedic surgeon must have combinations of above-mentioned points, and then only he can be called as orthopaedic consultant. For patient consultant needs to be safe, sound and reliable so that patients can place their full trust in him. To gain the status of a consultant, it is not degrees or diplomas that really count, it is the perfect education and extensive training which makes the orthopaedic surgeon.


During my tenure, various newer fellowships have been introduced, which will infuse greater academic interest in the young Orthopedist, as well as senior members towards self-progression and a direct resultant benefit to the organization. We have added 5-6 fellowships this year. We started four fellowships called- WOC - Sulzer - IOA fellowship and one Inland traveling fellowship called " Sudhir Babhulkar-IOA traveling fellowship" by my personal contribution of Rs.2.00 lakhs. This year we have also introduced new fellowship for Basic Research in Orthopaedics, called IOA- Panacea Biotec Research Fellowship with the support and donation from of Panacea Biotec Pharmaceuticals. This year Dr. Mittal - - SICOT - IOA fellowship will start which has been in the process last 3-4 years.

Giant Killer Earthquake - Jan. 2001

Giant killer earthquake, measuring 7.9 on the Richter scale rocked the state of Gujarat on the morning of 26 th January 2001. It left behind in one sweep few deaths & lot of destruction with plenty of physically & mentally traumatized population. On personal assessment and feedback from Dr HKT Raza, who did extraordinary job by setting Emergency Hospital at Gandhidham during this tragedy, the total mortality might be over a lac, but with large population of morbid patients. All Orthopaedic Surgeons from Gujarat and all over the country contributed their skill and time to look after the health of these injured patients. IOA submitted the plan to Mr.Kesubhai Patel, then Chief Minister of Gujarat for " Total Care and Medical Rehabilitation of Victims of earthquake" on 16 th February 2001.

Rationalisation Of Trauma Services

Its time for us to come together and rationalise our care of trauma victims. Its necessary to streamline the management we offer to accidents patients, which most of us are catering in General & teaching hospitals. Rather than opening different Trauma centers, existing departments with support from ancillary specialty should manage Trauma & Polytrauma patients. This will cut short the need for buildings, expenditure for the services of different staff members and even on equipments. You only need to upgrade the departments and purchase additional instruments & equipments. Major financial contribution can be avoided. Our Trauma committee is expected to submit the report on rationalisation of the services for the management of trauma victims.

BJD - INDIA : NAN Activities

Bone and joint decade 2000-2010 is an umbrella organization supported by World health organization. In BJD-Indian national action network has been formed. Newly formed BJD-INDIA: NAN is supported and endorsed by Ministry of Health & Family welfare, Govt. of India and we had 3­4 meetings last year at Pune, Chennai & Delhi. The organization is very active under the Chairmanship of one of our past President, Dr.T.K.Shanmugasundaram. This society is duly registered and is expected to perform excellent job for the decade.

IOA House & IOA Activities

Now our head office-IOA HOUSE at Delhi is fully equipped and properly functioning. It is fully equipped and is ready for nation wide information. Even IOA guesthouse is open to our members for the first time since July 2001. Part of the building still requires furnishing, especially basement & ground floor which can be used for workshops, meetings etc. For proper functioning we have streamlined the functioning of IOA, protocols for IOACONS, IOAICL and various scientific activities, its various committees, finance and other academic activities. If all activities are centered in this house, by central and direct control of IOA, it will achieve its important goal. However we need to appoint Administrative or Executive officer for looking after the function.

Finance & Income-Tax

Healthy 'mite' is the might of organization. Hence to improve the pecuniary state of our organization, the inflow and outflow of money has to be regulated by direct control of the executive body of IOA, over the various monetary transactions. It would bring transparency in the working and awareness of past mistakes. After all, experience is the name we give to our mistakes.

Like disease, Income tax also does not spare any body. The centralized control would definitely help towards better channeling of Income tax problems. IOA has been summoned by Director of Income tax and our organization is under scrutiny under section U/S 131 of the Income tax act 1961. Our organization had to face lot of difficulties following IOACON at Bangalore year 1994 (letter No. DC (INV)/2(1)/BA-170/133(6)/99-2000 dated 13.3.2000), Jabalpur 1998, and Jaipur 2000. In spite of writing and instructing the Organizing secretaries, we are still facing the problems, since many of the Chapters are not registered bodies and they do not have Income tax or PAN. To rescue IOA we had to call Emergency Executive meeting and resolve the issue at least temporarily. However if the problem is not solved very soon Income tax authority will open up the cases of last ten years and may be we will have to sell IOA House & building to pay off the debts. The centralized control would definitely help towards better channeling of Income tax problems and solve the issue once forever.


Though constitution of any organization is vital, it should not be treated as " Sacrosanct" with typical hegemonic attitude. Due to changing environments and unforeseen problem, it needs to be amended from time to time. Hence we need to take immediate step to amend the rules and regulations of IOA.

Thus dear friends, I had taken over the Presidentship of our prestigious organization, like a " Splendid Torch" which I had to hold for last eleven months, and tried to burn it as brightly as possible, with a fond hope of handing it on to a future successor of mine. Kindly judge my performance, by the area of brightness covered, rather than the remaining darkness.
"The charm of life is dreaming for a bright future,

Let us make this dream come true"

Long live IOA.

Correspondence Address:
S S Babhulkar
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

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