The first day of July every year is significant for any doctor in India, as they (especially clinicians) receive loads of wishes from their patients and the public on account of National Doctor’s Day, celebrated in memory of Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy. Even though I happened to become a Pharmacovigilance Physician pretty much in the early days of my medical career, the observance has continued to remain important to me. Much more than ever before, 1st July 2021 meant a lot to me, for it marked the silver jubilee of my entry into the field of Medicine. In this context, I am overjoyed to share my feelings with you through this July 2021 edition of Oviya MedSafe‘s newsletter (the 106th in the series since April 2012)!
It was on this day in 1996, I joined the MBBS course at Coimbatore Medical College, not once foreseeing anything beyond a conventional clinical career then, being a son of a typical doctor couple in India. When I sat to recall my professional journey of the past 25 years, I realized that my life has had in store for me key turning points almost once in every 5 years. Each block of 5 years propelled me into a unique phase and made me don a different role, powered partly by serendipity and mainly by my keenness to relentlessly try the road not taken. It was heartening for me to recollect that during the Doctor’s Day season in 2016 (the end of my 4th block of 5 years), I was recognized as a Leader in Pharmacovigilance by the Coimbatore Branch of the Indian Medical Association (IMA, the largest representative voluntary organization of Doctors of Modern Scientific System of Medicine) and on the same occasion in 2021 (the end of my 5th block of 5 years) now, I hold office as the Chairman of the IMA Headquarters Standing Committee for Pharmacovigilance, for which growth I remain thankful to everyone and everything that I encountered throughout my journey.
As much as I would like to document all these experiences, I did make out that it could warrant a lengthy book. Particularly, my learnings in founding Oviya MedSafe as a Pharmacovigilance-focused organization in 2012 and steering it into its 10th year will need several chapters. Hence, I thought of narrating how my uncompromising efforts in challenging my comfort zones throughout accompanied by my strong adherence to certain core values at every point in life contributed to my professional growth, as a video post. Titled “25 years in Medicine: What made me what I am today“, this extemporaneous and obviously unedited video runs for just about 12 minutes. I believe this brief reflection of the path I traversed so far may enable younger generations to feel more encouraged about and confidently pursue their dreams for which they have been made for.
The fundamental point I wanted to highlight was: “Do not compare yourselves with others, for everyone’s journey is different“. Please click here to watch the video. Comments are welcome, as always!
Let me move on to the next subject of this issue: a guest column titled “Pharmacovigilance as an Indispensable Ingredient for India’s Pharma Growth Formula” which I was invited to author for the 19th anniversary edition of Pharma Bio World (PBW), a leading pharmaceutical industry magazine based in India! I wanted to write on this topic because I have always felt that Pharmacovigilance is an enabler for the growth of the pharmaceutical industry, in spite of it not being a view that many share. In fact, I have made the following claim in the article, which I am not sure if anyone else already has:
“Although the pharma industry has been known to exist for centuries, it would not be an exaggeration to state that the emergence of Pharmacovigilance as a Science and consequently as a Regulation particularly in the past 60 years has made medicinal products much safer and more effective for the patients, thereby enhancing public confidence on the accountability of the industry.”
I hope this snippet induces you to read the paper in full. Please click here to view/download the article. To read this guest column in the July 2021 issue of Pharma Bio World in their original flipbook format, please visit this URL. My article in the flipbook runs from page 46 to page 49. I am keen to hear any opinions you may have on the perspectives that I have put forth in this publication.
Eager to re-connect with you through our August 2021 newsletter,
With thanks & regards,
Dr J Vijay Venkatraman
MBBS, F. Diab., MBA, FPIPA (UK)
Managing Director & CEO,
Oviya MedSafe Pvt Ltd,
Oviya MedSafe UK Ltd,