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Third edition of 'SLMA Guidelines on Vaccines' launched

An updated edition of the Sri Lanka Medical Association's (SLMA's) 'Guidelines and Information on Vaccines' has been published and launched in Colombo and is to be distributed to medical practitioners across the country.

The 30 chapters of the book are written by 17 specialists from the private sector, universities and the Government sector including six from the Epidemiology Unit of the Ministry of Health.

Speaking at the launch, Dr. Lucian Jayasuriya, Joint Editor and Coordinator of the book said: "The SLMA took an important step in the year 2000 in publishing the 'SLMA Guidelines on non-EPI vaccines.' It filled a gap, as there was no reference book on non-EPI vaccines for the Sri Lankan healthcare provider. It became a popular book among doctors and medical students."

The chief guest at the launch was Dr. Dula de Silva, Deputy Director General Public Health Services, Ministry of Healthcare and Nutrition. Among the distinguished speakers at the event were Professor Lalitha Mendis, President of the SLMA who made a presentation on 'Global polio control,' and Dr. Omala Wimalaratne, Joint Editor, Consultant Virologist and Vaccinologist and Head of Department of Rabies and Vaccines at the Medical Research Institute (MRI) who spoke on 'Human rabies in Sri Lanka: achievements and challenges.'

Dr. Iyanthi Abeyewickreme, Chair of the SLMA Committee on Communicable Diseases presented first copies of the book to Dr. Dula de Silva and Professor Lalitha Mendis. Professor Anura Weerasinghe, Joint Editor thanked the authors of the chapters, the core review group and GlaxoSmithKline for publication of the book.

The 17 specialists who contributed to the book's content are Prof. Anura Weerasinghe, Dr. Risintha Premaratne, Dr. Ananda Amarasinghe, Dr. Ranjith Batuwanthudawe, Prof. Jennifer Perera, Dr. Kanishka Karunaratne, Dr. Nihal Abeysinghe, Dr. Omala Wimalaratne, Dr. Paba Palihawadana, Dr. Prasanna Siriwardena, Dr. Sarath de Silva, Dr. Desmond Fernando, Prof. Srimali Fernando, Dr. Iyanthi Abeyewickreme, Dr. Sudath Peiris, Prof. Rohini Fernandopulle and Dr. Shalini Sri Ranganathan.

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