Mr. Kenneth Aristotle Punzalan of the Research Institute for Tropical Medicine (RITM) National Reference Laboratory for Transfusion Transmissible Infections (TTI-NRL) was recognized as one of the 50 movers in the field of Medical Technology in the Philippines during the gala and awards night of the 50th MedTech Week celebration organized by the Philippine Association of Medical Technologists, Inc. (PAMET) held last September 24, 2022 at the Crowne Plaza Galleria Manila.
“The award serves as an inspiration to further strengthen blood safety in the country. Much work has been done over the last twenty-eight years since the National Blood Services Act was enacted in 1994, and a lot more needs to be realized with the risk of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases that put the blood supply at risk. I realize that despite the challenges, there are a lot of fine and smart people with whom I have had the opportunity to have productive interactions and prolific exchange of ideas, and these will help advance the medical technology profession and improve public health in the country,” said Mr. Punzalan about his latest accolade.
The event which served as the culminating activity of the 50th MedTech Week, honored members and other partners of PAMET who are serving the organization, local professional associations, and other government agencies.
“This night is for the recognition of these active members who are considered as prime movers in advancing the Medical Technology profession for continuous growth and development of all the PAMET members,” said PAMET National Treasurer and Awards Committee Chairperson, Evangeline R. Castillo.
Mr. Punzalan currently serves as Medical Technologist III for RITM TTI-NRL, and assumes the roles of data manager and officer for communications, external quality assurance services (EQAS), and research.
He continues to play a crucial role in the COVID-19 response of the Institute as Assistant Team Lead of the RITM COVID-19 Laboratory Operations. As Assistant Team Lead, Mr. Punzalan, provides support to the kit evaluation processes of RITM, particularly in the evaluation of SARS-CoV-2 antibody assays equipment.
As a researcher, Mr. Punzalan specializes in the advancement of blood safety in the Philippines. In 2017, he co-authored a study on validation of non-reactive blood units in the Philippines, which was published in the Philippine Journal of Pathology. He and his team also presented their research poster on the study in the 2016 International Society for Blood Transfusion International Congress held in Dubai.
To add to his significant roles in the field of Medical Technology in the country, Mr. Punzalan is also the incumbent Secretary of the Philippine Blood Coordinating Council (PBCC) – a national organization dedicated to the advancement of blood service facilities in the country through provision of continuous capacity-building activities and technical assistance to healthcare providers and policymakers.
Aside from Mr. Punzalan, officers of various national Medical Technology organizations were also recognized as movers of the field. This includes Mr. Punzalan’s colleagues from PBCC and awardees from the following organizations:
- Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) Board of Medical Technology
- Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Technical Committee for Medical Technology Education (TCMTE)
- Philippine Association of Schools of Medical Technology and Public Health (PASMETH)
- Biorisk Association of the Philippines (BRAP)
- Philippine Council for Quality Assurance in Clinical Laboratories (PCQACL)
- Philippine Society of Histopathology (PSH)
Awardees also include Non-PAMET members who are key players in PAMET’s partner organizations, PAMET national officers, and the members of the organizing committee of the 50th MedTech Week. Posthumous recognition was also given to PAMET members who have actively served the organization during their untimely demise.
by Anel Azel Dimaano