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West Indian Medical Journal

Print version ISSN 0043-3144

West Indian med. j. vol.61 no.4 Mona July 2012




Chairman's Message



Samuel S Ramsewak

Chairman Editorial Board

Correspondence to



It is with a tremendous sense of pride and accomplishment that we, at the West Indian Medical Journal, celebrate with the peoples of Jamaica and of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, in this the 50th year of their independence from Great Britain. It is also 50 years since the University of the West Indies became a full degree granting institution by royal charter, evolving from being a College of the University of London.

Indeed, the bonds with first, the British Empire and then the Commonwealth have been and continue to be very strong and the Journal has been privileged to have played a sterling role in the process of healthcare development in these nations.

Since the Journal's founding in 1951, there has been a virtual revolution in the science and practice of medicine, and it is pertinent to note the transition in the cadre of professionals and academics in the West Indies. At that time, virtually all such persons were trained and performed research abroad (mainly in Great Britain) but the region can now boast that the vast majority of academics and professionals are indigenous and trained here. Furthermore, the Journal has witnessed their contributions to high quality and relevant research in health. This is nothing short of remarkable. Of interest is that all Deans of the Medical Schools in the University of the West Indies (UWI) are graduates of the UWI and have all contributed in a meaningful way to the academe which has been duly recorded in the Journal.

In my mind, this speaks to the formidable pool of talent existing in the Caribbean and to the determination and commitment of the peoples of the West Indies to forge their own destiny and to serve their peoples.

The West Indian Medical Journal is proud that it has been a catalyst of such a remarkable series of achievements. This Special Issue serves to highlight the valuable contributions which have come through its pages in the past fifty years and in particular to show how high quality and relevant research has impacted on a number of endemic disease states and to show the conversion from treatment to prevention.

On behalf of the Board of the Journal, its Editor-in-Chief, Professor Everard Barton and all the staff of the Journal, I wish to extend congratulations to the peoples of Jamaica and of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago on this auspicious event with wishes for continued growth, prosperity and good health.



West Indian Medical Journal
Professor and Dean
Faculty of Medical Sciences
The University of the West Indies
St Augustine
Trinidad and Tobago