Research publication achievement and award

Celebrating an achievement in research publication, The Asia Pacific Family Medicine Journal raised the profile of regional research at the recent Asia Pacific WONCA conference.

The Asia Pacific Family Medicine Journal was born out of a need to provide a voice for regional research in the Asia Pacific region. In spite of the fact that over 100,000 journals were in print at the time, family medicine researchers from many countries in the region still struggled to achieve publication for their work.

After nearly 10 years of publication, the journal continues to offer regional family physicians an opportunity to share their findings with an international audience. Although the journal began life in a print format, it is now Open Access ( making it easier for general practitioners from anywhere in the world to retrieve regional articles relevant to their own work. Mindful of the fact that the 16 member countries who comprise this region have a very mixed socioeconomic profile, Biomedcentral provides submitting authors the opportunity to apply for a waiver of the publishing fees if their country is listed by the World Bank as either low or lower-middle income economies, as of July 2009.

Award winner: Dr Bakare

At the recent 18th Asia Pacific WONCA conference in Cebu, Philippines over 2000 delegates witnessed the presentation of the Lyn Clearihan Award for the best research paper published in the journal in the preceding twelve months. This is the second time this award has been offered by WONCA’s Asia Pacific Council and Dr Tony Bakare was present to accept his award of US $1000. The article, The usefulness of a clinical 'scorecard' in managing patients with sore throat in general practice, addresses a common complaint often seen in general practice. In the article, Tony and his co-author Associate Professor Peter Schattner outline the use of the scorecard to assist in the clinical decision-making of when to prescribe antibiotics for patients with a sore throat. The need for judicious use of antibiotics has never been greater as resistant organisms continue to develop across the globe, making the development of any tool to assist clinical judgment timely.

As an international medical graduate currently practicing in a solo practice in a small town in Australia, Dr Bakare undertook his research while working in his practice full time. In his acceptance speech he encouraged others in the audience to participate in research and reinforced the personal rewards, as well as the contribution to practice, policy and service delivery that it can make. Dr Bakare’s work on the Scorecard contributed to his being award his Master in Family Medicine from Monash University. Having got a ‘taste’ of research and discovered what can be achieved he now intends to pursue a PhD.

2011–12 award entries 

So, who will be our worthy winner of the third Lyn Clearihan award, due to be presented at Jeju, South Korea, during the 19th Asia Pacific WONCA conference? The WONCA council has again pledged to support regional research through this US $1000 award. All research papers published by the journal between now and then are eligible for inclusion. We look forward to seeing you in Jeju. 


A/ Prof Lyn Clearihan
Prof Zorayda Leopando
Prof Tai Pong Lam
Prof Richard Hays