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The Hong Kong Down Syndrome Association 30th Anniversary Symposium - Innovation, Insights & Intervention

To celebrate the 30th Anniversary of the Hong Kong Down Syndrome Association (HKDSA), a symposium with the theme “Innovation, Insights & Intervention” was organized at Kai Chong Tong, Postgraduate Education Centre, The Chinese University of Hong Kong,  Prince of Wales Hospital, on June 24, 2017. Mr. Edward Yau Tang-wah, GBS, JP,  Director of the Chief Executive Office of the HKSAR, Professor Francis Chan, JP, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, CUHK and Mr. Leung Kin-man Michael, MH, Chairperson of The Hong Kong Down Syndrome Association, were invited to be the officiating guests for the Symposium.

The Symposium was jointly supported by the Faculty of Medicine of CUHK,  Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences of CUHK, and The Hong Kong Research Grant Council Theme-based Research Scheme Project (T12-403/15N), to explore the Down Syndrome from the perspectives of medical research, public health services, early educations and daily life experiences, such as the most updated discoveries on genetic aspects of Down Syndrome, current trend of prenatal testing developments, and the attentions to be paid on the growths and assistances for children with special needs.

In his opening speech, Mr. Edward Yau, GBS, JP, gave words of encouragements to all the parents who had been taking great care of their children with Down Syndrome, and he emphasized on HKDSA’s contributions in raising public awareness and understandings of Down Syndrome over the years.

On the scientific front, Professor Francis Chan, JP, mentioned how the technological advancements in medical field had helped improving the diagnosis, treatments and even preventative measures of various health problems. He believed that clinical experiences and research works should be compliment of each other in medical educations, so as to maximize the efforts in improving the quality of life for all patients. 

Mr. Michael Leung, MH, on behalf of HKDSA, expressed his sincere gratitude to all the supporting organizations for making this symposium a successful one. Hoping that through this symposium, the public would grasp deeper understandings not only in the daily life, but also the scientific and academic basis of Down Syndrome, as well as to show supports to all the families which had been working hard together with their children for a wonderful life.

Professionals from the medical and education fields were invited to speak at the symposium. Professor Dennis Lo, SBS, Director of the Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences, CUHK, explained how he and his research team had worked to make the remarkable discoveries on non-invasive prenatal testing for Down Syndrome.

Dr. Brian Chung, Clinical Associate Professor from the Department of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, The University of Hong Kong, shared with us how his encounters with Down Syndrome patients sheds lights on his career path as a paediatrician and a clinical geneticist.

As for the daily life of patients with Down Syndrome, Professor Kenneth Sin, Director of Centre for Special Educational Needs and Inclusive Education at The Education University of Hong Kong, analyzed and discussed about the effectiveness of inclusive education in Hong Kong, and the suggestions for improving the current system. 

Ms. Maggie Yeung Y.M.,  Chairperson of Parent committee of HKDSA, shared with us her own experiences in raising her child with Down syndrome and how she helps her son in overcoming everyday challenges. 

A question and answer session was scheduled before closure of the Symposium with all 4 speakers joined on stage as a panel to discuss the questions raised by the audiences. The discussions were fruitful and insightful. The Symposium was finished with great success before noon time of the day.

Group photo took before the Symposium, from the left: Mr. Edward Yau, GBS, JP, Dr. Brian Chung, Prof. Dennis Lo, SBS, Mr. Michael Leung, MH, Ms. Maggie Yeung Y.M., Ms. Maggie Yeung P.M.

Group photo took during the opening ceremony of the Symposium, from the left: Mr. Edward Yau, GBS, JP, Prof. Dennis Lo, SBS, Prof. Francis Chan, JP,

Prof. Dennis Lo, SBS, signed on the guest signing board before the Symposium. 

Participants joined the Symposium at Kai Chong Tong, Postgraduate Education Centre, Prince of Wales Hospital. 

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