Sada-e-Watan Sydney ™

At the Sydney Harbour Family Cruise of APMA, Transcript Speech of the President Australia Pakistan Medical Association Dr. Sayeed Khan

Good afternoon and Assalam-Alaikum,

I would like to first acknowledge the Gadigal people who are the traditional owners of these waters on which we are meeting and pay my respects to their Elders, past and present.

Dear Australia Pakistan Medical Association members, their families, my respected colleagues and all other distinguished guests-- EID MUBARAK.
On behalf of APMA, I welcome you all to our EID MILAN SYDNEY HARBOUR CRUISE on this beautiful afternoon, on one of the most iconic and stunning harbours in the world.

I would like to acknowledge Trustees and Advisory council members of APMA present here;
- Dr Amanullah Khan,
- Dr Farooq Wasti,
- Dr Ghulam Akbar Khan,
- Dr Shabbir Haider,
- Dr Shaukat Javed and
- Dr Rabab Rizvi
-Incoming Consul General of Pakistan-- Abdul Majid Yousafani.
-Former Consul General of Pakistan---Abdul Aziz Uqaili.
-Hamid Khan from Edhi Foundation. and
-Zafar Hussain from Sada-e-Watan.

I would also like to thank all our generous sponsors, without them we couldn’t have enjoyed this wonderful event.

APMA is extremely proud in bringing Pakistani medical professionals in NSW together on one platform, for one voice, to provide leadership, support and guidance to our members to achieve professional goals and service to our communities. APMA aims to involve Pakistani medical community and their families in social cohesion, cultural activities and community work.
Today's event is a manifestation of this purpose, and I feel a sense of pride and accomplishment in having reached this goal, and I want to thank all members, stretching from Sydney, Newcastle, Wollongong, Canberra and many rural country areas of NSW for supporting APMA to achieve this goal successfully.

I would like to take this opportunity to elaborate on some pertinent health issues that our communities are currently facing. The first issue I want to discuss is about Medicare. I don’t want to politicize but I feel that this is an opportune time to touch on this burning issue which influences the entire medical landscape.
Medicare is one of the great Australian success stories. It may not be perfect but for 40 years it has delivered healthcare fairly and efficiently. Everyone gets access to high quality health care, regardless of their finance.

However recent budget constraints and cuts to healthcare including freeze to Medicare rebates, Gap payments for radiology and pathology, and an overall movement towards a US styled privatized health system. This has implications, which will negate the core Australian values of equity, fairness and opportunity.

I feel that the overwhelming majority of Australians would like to see Medicare strengthened rather than dismantled. Which is quite evident with last weeks election results.
On behalf of APMA, I would like to urge the future government to make Medicare more effective and efficient so that ALL Australians continue to benefit from one of the best healthcare systems of the world.

CG Abdul Majid Yousafani, President APMA Dr. Sayeed Khan and S. Zafar Hussain

The second issue I would like to discuss relates directly to the health of the Migrant communities including Pakistanis in Australia.Generally health of new Pakistani immigrants is quite good. Due to changes in diet, socio-cultural factors, economic and employment pressures we become more at risk of developing Diabetes, IHD, other Chronic illnesses and Cancers.
There is a need for lifestyle changes within the Pakistani community, namely diet, exercise and leisure activities. We need to educate and encourage our community to embrace primary prevention of chronic illnesses and preventable cancers. We must use all means to bring positive changes in the community so that people embrace healthy lifestyles.
I am sure that all APMA members share my sentiments and as community leaders and guardians, we can bring positive change.

Lastly I would like thank the APMA executive committee, especially, Imran, Irfan, Nadeem, Sadia, Ghazala, Samreen, Arooge and Madiha for their hard work in putting together this Event.
Although my wife, Ghazala tried to remove this part of my speech, I want to give a special thanks to her. Ghazala’s dedication and hard work over the last five years has made APMA into the successful organisation it is today.

With all this said, I think we have had enough formalities, and I am in between you and a delicious lunch which has been provided by Himalaya restaurant.

So once again, I thank you all for coming today as without you, we would not be able to enjoy this wonderful afternoon.
Thank you.

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