PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE 2016/17
The year was marked with welcome news about recent developments in treatment options for haemophilia. Such a breakthrough may bring about new treatment and also the management of haemophilia. That several longer-lasting clotting factors have been developed spell hope to patients and possibly improve the quality of life for people with haemophilia.
Living in the developed world today, people with haemophilia can expect a near-normal lifespan with better living conditions and improved healthcare. As with the normal aging population, older haemophilia patients may face other chronic illnesses in addition to problems associated with haemophilia. Regular medical check-ups, moderate exercise where possible and eating “right” are essential for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
For our younger members, they are fortunate that prophylaxis is available and with prophylaxis coverage, they are able to lead a more active life with minimal disruption caused by bleeds.
The Society’s mission is to ensure that its members can lead productive lives in society. In these thirty two years since its inception, the Society was always mindful of its members’ needs and how best to make treatment more affordable. In helping to subsidize members’ treatment costs, the Society would have to raise the required funds annually. Expenditure on treatment subsidies had increased substantially over the past year, from $170,142 in the year 2015/2016 to $212,454 for 2016/2017. As the Society is manned only by a team of volunteers, with no paid staff, donations raised are expended mainly on treatment subsidies of members.
With a slower economy, fund raising would be affected. As a small charity, raising the much needed funds to meet members’ treatment costs would be a challenge. The Society would have to look for new sources of donations and organise more fund raising events in order to meet the increase in expenditure.
Together, with help from our donors, sponsors and “caring partners”, the Society raised $247,930 for 2016/2017. We would like to thank everyone – the students, the golfing fraternity, the community groups, the individuals and companies for supporting our cause in more ways than one. May we continue to receive your support in the coming years for the haemophilic community.
From an encounter with the Korea Haemophilia Association, we learnt of the active support that the Association receives from their members. I share with my predecessor, Dr Tan Hooi Hwa, who had on several occasions in the past years, asked our members to be more proactive in supporting the Society and to be more actively involved in the work of the Society. The current team helming the Society would have to pass the baton to the next generation. Can you be counted upon to step forward?
Lastly, I wish to thank the healthcare professionals at the Singapore General Hospital, KK Children’s Hospital and National University Hospital for their dedication and care of the patients with haemophilia. Also my thanks to the Executive Committee for their passion, hard work and commitment to the haemophilia cause.
Dr Gan Kim Loon