Monday, January 08, 2018

Review of 2017 - Part I

First week of the new year 2018 comes to an end soon, and only until now I find good time to summarise my year 2017.
2017 was quite a productive but very busy-action-packed year for myself. Looking back now, I feel contented and delighted at what I had achieved. Moving back from Penang to the Klang Valley might be the turning point of career development as a health policy researcher, turns out to be one of crucial life decisions that I’ve got it right. (However, given that the top management of my institute had changed rather significantly months later, who knows it could also go well for me if I had stayed? But it doesn’t matter now… I am happy for my research colleagues in Penang too)
In terms of work output, since I am part of the KL office team, I can’t believe myself that I had :
- attended 32 events (including workshops, conferences, forums and talks);
- contributed 7 The Malaysia Insight (TMI) articles, 5 Oriental Daily articles, 1 Contemporary Review article;
- published 1 research report on the Housemanship issue in Malaysia;
- co-author & research on the Market review of the Malaysia’s pharmaceutical sector;
- helped organise (with major intellectual inputs) the inaugural Penang Medical Expo and Conference 2017;
- made appearance on 3 presentations in public (one in Penang, one in Seoul, South Korea, and another one recorded live in the press conference for the launch of my Housemanship issue report), and quite a number of presentations in close-door workshops and meetings.
2018 would be equally if not more challenging for myself. I still have 3 outstanding major research projects to complete/clear (all almost there) and a few new ones about to start. It was obvious to me that the decision at that time to relocate back to KL would help me concentrating on policy research on health(care), and it did work out very well. I do have my general manager YB Dr Ong Kian Ming to thank, for the trust and confidence he has in my works. I am glad that he sees values in health policy research, at the same time gives me freedom to explore the topics beyond health.
I would like to thank my dear beloved colleagues in KL and Penang. Esther, she is the dai ga jie in the KL office, deserves her credits for her incredibly organised administrative work. I am happy that she built up her researcher profile too, and has improved tremendously in her skills and knowledge (and most importantly, her confidence and motivation). Su Lin is our office unofficial MO1 (Media Officer 1), for her excellent English proficiency and brilliant copyediting works (service only available for us, ok?!). Her recently upgraded car (we dubbed it as the “PI-van”) is always very useful and meaningful to us. We often love to make her our leader so that we could ‘follow’ her car (to lunch place, function, or to LRT station).
I also enjoyed working briefly with Dr Lyana Khairuddin as she worked as our visiting fellow, surely we had good time together (besides some intensive discussion and arguments). Of course, I didn't forget my wonderful colleagues + friends in Penang, too many names I cannot spell out one-by-one (scare whoever got left out perasan), thank you for keeping the friendship (and comradeship) as well as keeping in touch mostly via Whatsapp , emails and sometimes in person. I feel hard to see Evelyn and Kok Hin leaving to further their study at overseas, I do wish them well and happy for them (the former will return soon). Ya, over the ‘summer’ period we have a bunch of very good and bright interns who are studying in the UK and Canada, I enjoyed their company too.

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