(Vol.8 No.2 --- April 2003)
The recent outbreak of Severe Acute Repiratory Syndrome (SARS) is putting the whole medical system of Hong Kong to test. The challenges have been on the whole chain of health care delivery mechanism ranging from basic researches (on identifying the new pathogen, on diagnostic methods) to clinical management of individual case. The health care administration works hard to confine the spread of the disease while effort has to be spent to tackle unnecessary harsh non-scientific and often politically motivated criticism from various people. What you have been eye witnessing probably differs very little from what we know about when people of our previous generations were encountering dreadful and yet unknown diseases like the plaque. As health care professionals, for the time being, we are the pillar of the society. We have to be professional, stay calm and offer our help whenever necessary. Meanwhile, I would still like to on behalf of the HKMD thank all those who are fighting hard in this battle. The special article in this issue is the latest edition of the "HA Guideline on the Management of SARS" before our editorial deadline.
Life, on the other hand, has to go on. Dr. Chau Ka Foon, Dr. Li Chun Sang and their colleagues have spent much effort to prepare this issue's medical section on end stage renal disease. They want to stress the importance of team work which may be hard for those of us who regard ourselves as the center of the universe. As an urologist myself, although I would like to see article on the surgeon's contribution, I am still impressed by what the QEH colleagues are offering to the renal patients.