“THE LEGACY should be passed on to the next generation of clinical scientists,” said Mrs. Leticia de Ocampo Elegado, daughter of National Scientist Geminiano T. de Ocampo during her speech in the launch of the Department of Science and Technology’s medical research award last November 8, 2012 at the Hyatt Hotel and Casino Manila.
The legacy of her dad, known as the Father of Philippine Ophthalmology, is being a visionary in his field, particularly of realizing the future of medicine in the country through his pioneering practices in the research field.
And through the awards fittingly named for Dr. de Ocampo, DOST and its advisory body the National Academy of Science and Technology aim to pass on the legacy of de Ocampo by recognizing clinician researchers who made innovative visions for medical research in the country.These innovative visions are seen in their outstanding medical researches that pioneered the trail for clinical research and development.
Ocampo Elegado said that the de Ocampo family is overwhelmed on the visionary award named for her father. She then encouraged young medical scientists to continue dedicating their work for the Filipino masses.
“My father used to always say that a medical researcher must have scientific spirit, not scientific profit,” she ended.
A man of many firsts, De Ocampo excelled in his chosen field of medicine, Ophthalmology.
In 1952, De Ocampo established De Ocampo Eye Hospital, the first eye hospital in the Philippines. He was the first Filipino to perform corneal transplant successfully. He is also one of the founders of Philippine Eye Research Institute, the first research institution for basic ophthalmology in 1956.
He was bestowed the rank of National Scientist in the field of Ophthalmology by the late President Ferdinand Marcos in 1982 and was acknowledged as the Father of Modern Philippine Ophthalmology.
The Germiniano T. De Ocampo Visionary Award will be conferred via DOST-NAST on Sept. 16, birthday of De Ocampo, every other year.
Nominees for the said award should be a graduate of medicine from an accredited school or college of medicine and should have remarkable track record as a clinician practicing in the Philippines.
The recipient of the award will receive a gold medal, a plaque of recognition, and a cash prize of Php 100,000. Nomination forms will be available at the NAST website www.nast.com.ph
- S&T Post, 4th Quarter, 2012
Interviewed by: Allan Ace W. Aclan, S&T Media Service, DOST-STII