President Speech 2014
I would like to thank all members, colleagues and friends for giving me a chance to serve you in the coming year. I would also like to show my appreciation to Prof CS Lau, Prof Edmund Li, our advisors; and Dr LS Tam our immediate past president. With their dedicated commitment, the Society has accomplished a number of milestones in the last couple of years.

Hong Kong Society of Rheumatology Education and Research Foundation was formed under the leadership of Dr LS Tam, Dr CC Mok and dedicated council members from various hospitals in early 2012. The Clinical Rheumatology Systematic Treat-to-target in Asia Leadership (CRYSTAL) Project was kicked off in the subsequent year. This is an initiative to establish a Hong Kong Early RA Registry. The long-term goal of the project is to enhance disease management and outcome of our RA patients. Society will continue supporting the Foundation in this area with ultimate aim of improving the quality of treatment of our rheumatic diseases.

A number of new drugs for our rheumatic disease patients are coming, concerns about the use and safety of these new drugs, issues affecting our practices and quality patient care are imminent . The future challenges for us are to influence policy to the benefit of our patients especially in terms of financial assistance in expensive drugs; to the benefit of our profession in career prospects and manpower. With aging population in coming years together with a relative low rheumatologist to population ratio, this certainly poses an austere condition to our specialty.

Clinical imaging including ultrasound and MRI has been gaining its popularity and acceptance in rheumatology field in last decade. Society will continue supporting development in this direction by actively organizing scientifically endorsed ultrasound courses and sponsoring our members to advance their skills in this area.

Society will continue to build partnership relationship with APLAR and member societies especially in regions near us.

Together we make a happy specialty.

Dr. Carmen HO

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