Rheumatology on the street, the great bet of PANLAR 2024

By :
    Estefanía Fajardo
    Periodista científica de Global Rheumatology by PANLAR.

06 April, 2024
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E- ISSN: 2709-5533
Vol 5 / Ene - Jun [2024]


Rheumatology on the street, the great bet of PANLAR 2024

Autor: Estefanía Fajardo: Science journalist for Global Rheumatology by PANLAR, estefaniafajardod@gmail.com

DOI: https://doi.org/10.46856/grp.233.et187

Cite: Fajardo E. Rheumatology on the street, the great bet of PANLAR 2024 | Global Rheumatology.  Vol 5/ Ene - Jun [2024] Available from: https://doi.org/10.46856/grp.233.et187

Received date:  March 27th / 2024
Accepted date: March 26th / 2024
Published Date: April 5th / 2024

With Dr. Miguel Albanese, president of PANLAR, we explore what Barranquilla has to surprise us. Rheumatology on the streets is the legacy that we seek to leave as an example of integration with the population.

With the objective of having “a PANLAR for everyone”, as referred to by Dr. Miguel Albanese, president of PANLAR (Pan-American League of Associations for Rheumatology) and as a prelude to what will be the 2024 Congress, to be held in Barranquilla, and For the period 2024-2030, the academic programming will have points that will allow addressing both science and participation with citizens directly.

With a focus on integration with the community and improving medical care in rheumatology, this year Rheumatology will be on the streets in Barranquilla. A differential and outstanding element that is part of a key initiative to connect with the population and raise awareness about rheumatic diseases. It seeks to carry out educational and screening activities in public places to identify patients and provide early care.

Additionally, there is the Universalization of PANLAR. The goal is to expand PANLAR's influence beyond medical professionals to include patients and the broader community, in order to improve the understanding and treatment of rheumatic diseases.

Dr. Albanese also mentions the Strategic Plan 2024-2030. A structure that has been worked on and will be consolidated under the focus of generating knowledge in rheumatology, awareness, innovation and education. The importance of maintaining sustainability and maximizing the use of limited resources is highlighted. “What is PANLAR? A place for generating knowledge,” summarizes the president.

In line with this, the Impact on the community is also essential, and that is the great commitment of the PANLAR Barranquilla 2024 Congress. “The street is going to be our amphitheater, the open-air classes, the open-air exhibition of patients, the in some places in Barranquilla to recruit patients” he assures, adding "we intend that after the Congress there will be a peripheral patient recruitment unit in different places in Barranquilla to achieve that, the delay we have in the diagnosis". If we achieve that, we have achieved the legacy and this entire Congress is going to be really impactful, because it is going to be one of the first congresses that leaves something in the city after it.


Below is the interview

Reumatologìa a la Calle (Rheumatology to the Streets), PANLAR's Great Bet for 2024

With Dr. Miguel Albanese, president of PANLAR, we explore what Barranquilla has to surprise us. Rheumatology to the streets is the legacy sought to be left as a demonstration of integration with the population.

EF: Hello everyone and welcome to a new videoblog from Global Rheumatology, where we'll be addressing all the topics we'll be discussing at PANLAR 2024. We're with Dr. Miguel Albanese. Doctor, welcome and tell us what awaits us in Barranquilla next month.

MA: Hello everyone. It's a pleasure to be in this beautiful space that has been created in recent times. This space is also a product of the PANLAR Development Plan. I took over the presidency of PANLAR in 2022 for a short period. I inherited a post-pandemic period in PANLAR, but I inherited a PANLAR that was going through extraordinary changes, such as the Strategic Development Plan 2016-2022, which spanned several presidencies. I also arrived at a society with 80 years of trajectory, meaning we had an important legacy, which is a rheumatological community. It was a rheumatological community, I say was because it was basically focused on the doctor, on the doctor who was developing. That community is going to be transformed. So, a little of what started this year, in this Strategic Development Plan 2016-2022, in which PANLAR generated powerful leadership, generated centers of knowledge, expanded what was the unit of knowledge production, like study groups, generated innovation products, innovation awards, clinical incentive awards, generated an annual congress, each year going and presenting what is being generated in the PANLAR world, generated a platform, because it's not a magazine, Global Rheumatology is a multimedia that aims to reach the whole world. That's the first big change. It globalized rheumatology knowledge. There's a Global Rheumatology for doctors, for the young person in training, for the adjunct doctor. It's no longer just the world of rheumatologists, only PANLAR. PANLAR is a brand of rheumatology, basically in Latin America, but why not in the American continent, and we want to take that big step. So, with this introduction made, I inherited all of that. I stand as the new president and I ask, what do we have to do? Where do I stand? What I inherited is important. So I ask, what is PANLAR's wealth today? PANLAR's wealth today is knowledge, generating knowledge in rheumatology. What is PANLAR? PANLAR remains essentially a society of medical societies dedicated to the study of rheumatology. Who is PANLAR for? Of course, for doctors. Because doctors are the ones who train, who study rheumatology. Is it only for doctors? Here comes the first big change. Universalize PANLAR, PANLAR is for the patient. Ultimately, it's for the human being. The better-trained doctor will make a better diagnosis, a better treatment. A better-informed patient will be a patient who undergoes and understands the treatment. This change of universalizing PANLAR, of generating a space for the community, is the big change we want to make. I speak of community, I speak of a person who understands what rheumatology is. The queen remains rheumatology in its practitioners. In those who study, in those who practice. And the initial beneficiary is the human being, the suffering patient. That is the big change we want to achieve. And that is my role, to be a bridge between the Development Plan and the impact we want to generate in the community. That's why we're going for the impact and that's where we're going to end up. What link do I have along the way? My final work as president is the Barranquilla Congress. Barranquilla is a magical city for me. Because as Carlo Vinicio said, you fell in love with Barranquilla. Yes, I fell in love with Barranquilla. What did I fall in love with Barranquilla? Gabo, magical realism. Gabo describes the characters of Macondo, that unreal world that has made me feel since my youth, it inspires me to Panamericanism. It inspires me that the southern or Latin American cone can be happy. It inspires me that I can be a free man. That's what I see in Gabo, and that's the first tribute we pay in Barranquilla. Gabo is our literary honoree, but he's our inspiring muse for this congress in Barranquilla. Barranquilla is a city with Colombian culture. Colombia is a very important country. Mestizaje is important. Mestizaje for me is not a stain, mestizaje is the essence of Latin America. And Colombia is a standard-bearer. I respect Colombia, I admire it, and I ask that Colombia help me with its mestizo people to generate what I want to achieve, the change towards the community. Second step. Barranquilla embraces you with its warmth and caresses you with the breeze from the Magdalena, well, that's also interesting. So, this folklore and this magic that I want to give is what I expect in Barranquilla. Not forgetting the essential. We are doctors. Medical Congress. Teach my rheumatology. Generate and promote more rheumatology, but this time the message is a congress that will resonate with the people. We intend to resonate from Barranquilla to the continent. Why? Because we are going to do community consultations. Why? Because we are going to have an extended congress. Why? Because we are going to take it to the streets. Taking it to the streets means continuing to be the doctors who continue to provide medical knowledge up to date for everyone. In the congress? Or for the doctors? But on the street it's about generating the need for rheumatology in people so they consult early. It's about generating the need for rheumatology in those who manage health. It's important to have peripheral units that attend to first-level patients. It's important to select patient A, B, or C to avoid diagnostic delays. All of this is what I think will be reflected, before and after Barranquilla.

EF: You mentioned this about the community and before you described it to me as an empathetic and sensitive rheumatology towards people. So let's talk about this rheumatology on the street, about this that Barranquilla will have as a differential factor, which is being with the people.

MA: It's that I don't conceive, if I'm a doctor, it's not for me to look in the mirror and say how beautiful, how much I know. I have to learn and know to help the other. I have to be benevolent. It's not my pride. Being empathetic is understanding you, not telling you yes or no. Being empathetic is understanding your suffering. Being empathetic is knowing what you want and how I can help you. Being empathetic is where I can get something that can help the person in front of me. The patient is my real motive and doctors have to become servants of medicine. With this, we live off medicine, but we have to be servants of medicine. And I hope that PANLAR becomes an iconic brand in America that symbolizes hope in rheumatology, the hope that the whole world needs. The student wants PANLAR to be your hopeful training ground. But the patient who googles and says the PANLAR brand, these guys are serious, I'll listen to them, see what they say. The informant who has to legislate, PANLAR, these guys are serious, let's see how they can help me legislate. So, that's what this congress is going to encompass. This annual congress and Barranquilla is going to help me because it's the coastal area of a country of fifty million inhabitants, it's the Caribbean port, where I get all of Central America that we want to develop more in rheumatology, it's the area of a conflictive area between PANLAR, which was to tie at one point because evidently they had realized that the presidents went from north to south and skipped the Caribbean and Barranquilla and the entire Bolivarian area and said no, we are here, we need to be heard. Well, in Barranquilla they will have a Caribbean president who assumes, who is my friend and will continue the activity and will put his color, his stamp and his joy. That transmission, that relaxed and real thing of transmission of execution units, but maintaining the essence, united by the science of the heart, PANLAR is all of us. The street will be our amphitheater, the outdoor classes, the exhibition of patients outdoors, the areas in some places of Barranquilla, two or three, and we hope that the Mayor's Office supports us to achieve these patient recruitment units, but we hope that after the Congress stays, that there is a unit of peripheral patient recruitment in different places of Barranquilla to achieve that, the delay we have in diagnosis. If we achieve that, we have achieved the legacy and all this Congress is going to be really impactful, because it's going to be one of the first congresses that leaves something in the city after it. I don't want it to be three days of celebration and it ends. I want there to be a mark. Here PANLAR happened, Barranquilla has PANLAR standard bearers, undoubtedly, many are my friends. So, that's what I want, for people to be imbued with PANLAR, but not just as a football club fan, imbued as a service unit, imbued as a service platform. We are doctors, we are doctors who serve the community. This is our legacy, to leave the early care clinics, to leave those rheumatology images on the street, with the classes of what an osteoporotic is, a spondyloarthritic, a psoriatic, I don't know, the things that will be put together. That race along the Malecon, where we are going to show that it can be used as a training element. The legacy is to generate life and life that continues over time. If in 10 years I come back and find people running, if we find that we cut off access to diagnostic delays, we have really achieved something good. Time will tell. But today, the interesting thing is that it's a congress of excellent quality, at the international level, we prioritize the most important, the most important of the Americas with important EULAR add-ons, we have an ACR table, PANLAR, EULAR, the technical level is going to be top-notch, but also the human level has to be top-notch. And this congress, believe me, is going to generate echoes, the echo of time which is the legacy to the community.

EF: And that legacy to the community comes hand in hand with work that PANLAR has also done with patients. How has this whole process been and what does it mean to you, as a health professional, all of this?

MA: Yes, at what point did I take PANLAR? What did I have and what could I add? PANLAR generated important transformations. We inherited 80 years. I entered the PANLAR executive with strategic planning, strategic planning 2016-2022 was very important to me because it set important goals. It set knowledge, it set leadership, it set permanent committees, it set study groups, it set the JUNTOS group, which means together doctors and patients, but not intertwined. Each in their own group, but it set that the Latin American patient associations would be maintained. We maintained the JUNTOS connection. That patient knowledge program, a patient empowerment course was started. PANLAR has been supporting and holding the Patients Congress and we're going for the eighth, I believe, already. That's the magic of PANLAR and that's the amplification we're looking for. We have the Pan-American Rheumatology Day, a day when we all get involved to generate more knowledge, May 31st. We have Pan-American arthritis, we have everything. But then you inherit all that and say, what do we do? First, I have to give consistency, so the first thing I did was make a strategic plan for 2022-2026. But with a very important stamp, Barranquilla. So, the JUNTOS program has to be moved. We have to promote our patient associations and we have to do it seriously, consistently, and perpetually. That's why I started the presidency with that big goal. We have to go to Barranquilla with all our forces. That's why the great effort, that's why this big congress. And that's why the great political participation of the people of Barranquilla, they're waiting for us and we're waiting for them.

EF: We will wait for them in Barranquilla then.

MA: Of course.

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