Dear colleagues and members of FDI,
It is now three months since our meeting in Mexico and the occasion when I took over the FDI presidency. During the intervening period, I have, along with members of the Council and Executive Committee as well as the Executive Director, put my best efforts into ensuring FDI is perceived as a reliable, trustworthy and venerable institution by our members, stakeholders and corporate partners.
I have had the good fortune to visit a number of countries as the federation’s representative, among them India, Uruguay, Brazil, Argentina and the United States (Las Vegas and New York), an also a few FDI institutional high level stakeholders, such as WHO and IFPMA. Everywhere, I was impressed by the tremendous prestige that FDI enjoys, the goodwill it inspires and the high honour in which it is held.
I also had opportunity to share our vision with ministers, officials and the leadership and members of our national dental associations; and heighten their awareness of the latest international trends and best practice with regard to access to oral health, which today increasingly involves all medical professions within a context of holistic care.
It is heartening to see that, in the field of dental medicine, FDI is able to maintain its high profile among government officials, external stakeholders, corporations, foundations and other NGO’s. It is this high profile that contributes to the federation’s added value during this period of global economic crisis.
As an institution with worldwide outreach, FDI is in a unique position to make things happen. Its initial impact may appear slight but, just like a stone falling on the surface of a lake, the long-term effect of FDI actions ripple out to all parts of the globe
Whether in the field of Noncommunicable Diseases, the Global Caries Initiative, international policy on amalgam/mercury within UNEP, Continuing Education, the Annual Congress and Vision 2020, a recent project mapping oral health for the next nine years, we can be sure that FDI will, with the support of its members and partners, continue to have an impact and continue to make a difference.
Next year, 2012, will be crucial, not only because we will be holding our 100th Annual World Dental Congress in Hong Kong, SAR China, but also because we will be taking major steps towards achieving our aims within the context of the overarching FDI vision of ‘Leading the World to Optimal Oral Health’.
During this special festive season, let me, on behalf of the Council, Committees and Staff, take this opportunity to wish you good luck and happiness and reiterate our firm commitment to fulfilling the high expectations of our members, our partners and, most of all, people around the world for whom we are determined to make FDI’s vision of “optimal oral health” a reality.
Orlando Monteiro da Silva