Join Forces to create the future Putting TMDU's philosophy into action to confront the COVID-19 crisis
Let me introduce myself. My name is Yujiro Tanaka and I took office as president of Tokyo Medical and Dental University on April 1, 2020.
The spread of COVID-19 poses a grave challenge to the world. This pandemic, the like of which has not been seen since the Spanish flu infected a quarter of the world’s population and took the lives of some 50 million people, is expected to bring about far-reaching changes globally.
In this crisis, TMDU cancelled the graduation and entrance ceremonies and is on the verge of closing the campus.
Based on TMDU’s vision—“Cultivating Professionals with Knowledge and Humanity, thereby Contributing to People’s Well-being.”—our current mission, as befits a national medical university in Tokyo, is to confront this crisis.
Prioritize overcoming COVID-19
Initiatives to overcome COVID-19 are our top priority. Although there is a view that university hospitals should prioritize advanced medical treatment, such an attitude would not be in the best interests of society in the event of an explosive surge in infections. So, our university has started tackling with COVID-19 in no time.
The Medical Hospital will be at the forefront of treatment. I have instructed all our staff to do their utmost to save the lives of patients in Tokyo. I have requested all the staff in other departments to support the Medical Hospital in terms of manpower and physical assets. It is vitally important to protect medical professionals directly engaged in patient care from infection. For this purpose, we need to procure protective gear and increase our PCR testing capacity in house. Basic research laboratories have also been requested to extend cooperation.
Furthermore, mindful that contributing to society from research perspectives is a defining characteristic of TMDU, we will sharpen our focus on research to combat the novel coronavirus and other threats to humankind, disseminating new findings that could potentially benefit people’s health.
In a timely development, the M&D Data Science Center has set to work with a group of specialists in big data analytics. Their research will embrace the perspectives of not only public health but also bioscience.
In readiness for post-COVID-19 society
Another important consideration is to ensure that TMDU is prepared for post-COVID-19 society.
The prevailing systems, mores, values and attitudes will be changed by this crisis, and these changes will persist long after the crisis is overcome, creating a new social reality. To address this new reality, we would like to offer TMDU’s new concept of comprehensive healthcare to society.
The concept will embrace a wide range of clinical medicine covering everything from preventive medicine to thanatology, not just comprehensive physical examination of patients. Moreover, the adoption of a bioscience perspective will be essential. Even in the midst of this crisis, TMDU must prepare for subsequent developments.
Together, inspired by a common vision, in pursuit of shared goals
Lastly, I believe our rallying cry should be “Join forces to create the future.” In other words, my goal is to make TMDU an open, optimistic university characterized by autonomy and cooperation encompassing all the talented people constituting TMDU.
In this challenging situation, I am resolved to do my utmost as TMDU president to ensure the safety of our faculty and students so that we can advance together, inspired by a common vision, in pursuits of shared goals.
In this regard, TMDU’s basic policy will be determined through ongoing face-to-face discussion among the president, executive directors, and the director general. Under the basic policy, I would like each division to display its respective characteristics and maximize its contribution to society.
Lastly, I like to send you an invaluable phrase. “Jeopardy is opportunity”. Let's overcome this crisis together.
President Tokyo Medical and Dental UniversityYujiro Tanaka