Today (24 January 2007) Mr. Kitti Wasinondh, Director-General, Department of Information, in the capacity of Chairman of the Sub-committee on Public Relations, Prince Mahidol Award Foundation, and Clinical Prof. Dr. Supat Vanichakarn, Secretary-General, Prince Mahidol Award Foundation, hold a press conference on the Prince Mahidol Award 2006 Ceremony. They announced that on 1 November 2006, the Board of Trustees of the Prince Mahidol Award chaired by Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn considered the total of 59 candidates from 29 countries and decided to confer the Prince Mahidol Award 2006 in the field of medicine to Professor Dr. Stanley G. Schultz, USA and the Prince Mahidol Award 2006 in the field of public health to Dr. David R. Nalin, USA, Dr. Richard A. Cash, USA, and Dr. Dilip Mahalanabis, India. During the 1960s and the 1970s, this group of medical professionals had dedicated their lives to the discovery, the introduction, and the widespread use of “Oral Rehydration Solultion (ORS) or Oral Rehydration Therapy (ORT).” This simple, inexpensive, but effective treatment of severe diarrhea has saved more than 3 million lives each year.
On this occasion, His Majesty the King has graciously consented to confer the Prince Mahidol Award 2006 upon the Awardees on Wednesday, 31 January 2007 at 17.30 hrs at the Chakri Throne Hall and designated Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn to host dinner in honour of the Awardees at Boromrajasathitmaholarn Hall on the same evening at 19.00 hrs. Her Royal Highness Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn has also consented to preside over the Opening Ceremony of the Prince Mahidol Award Conference 2007 at the Imperial Queen’s Park on 1 February 2007 at 9.00 hrs and to host dinner in honour of the conference participants at 19.00 hrs.
Then, Dr. Mongkol na Songkhla, Minister of Public Health, Professor Dr. Vicharn Panich, Chairman of the Conference Organizing Committee, and Dr. P. T. Jayawickramarajah, WHO Representative to Thailand, hold a press conference on the Prince Mahidol Award Conference 2007. In their words, the Board of Trustees of the Foundation in cooperation with the Royal Thai Government, through Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mahidol University, Faculty of Medicine Siriraj Hospital, World Health Organization and a number of international organizations co-host the Prince Mahidol Award Conference to commemorate the 115th Birth Anniversary of H.R.H. Prince Mahidol of Songkla and the 15th Anniversary of the Prince Mahidol Award. The Conference will be held on 1-2 February 2007 at the Imperial Queen’s Park Hotel and the theme of the Conference is “Improving Access to Essential Health Technologies: Focusing on Neglected Diseases, Reaching Neglected Populations.” This year’s Conference comprises approximately three hundred participants from Thailand and other countries. Internationally-acclaimed individuals who have agreed to join the event include Dr. Margaret Chan, Director-General of WHO, Dr. Howard Zucker, Deputy Director-General of WHO, Dr. Shigeru Omi, Director, WHO Regional Office, Western Pacific, and Dr. Samlee Plianbangchang, Director, WHO Regional Office, Southeast Asia.
The Prince Mahidol Award Conference does not focus on academic topics on which most conferences are, but rather aims to be an international arena where policy makers come together to discuss, exchange, and agree upon the key global health issues.