News Learning from low income countries

From looking at cells to looking at systems

BMJ 2004; 329 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.329.7475.1128 (Published 11 November 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;329:1128
  1. David Weatherall
  1. Oxford

    Prawase Wasi started his career as a clinical scientist and rose to become one of the great reformers of the Thai healthcare system. David Weatherall describes his journey

    I first met Prawase Wasi in 1966 on a visit to Thailand on behalf of the World Health Organization to assess the extent of the problem of thalassaemia and related diseases. Prawase was one of a group of extremely lively young clinical scientists in the haematology department at Siriraj Hospital, Bangkok. He had been trained in medicine and haematology at Mahidol University and had spent a further period with Matthew Bloch in Colorado and with Lionel Penrose at the Galton Laboratory in London, learning haematology and genetics. Our meeting was the beginning of a longstanding friendship and scientific collaboration.

    On my many subsequent visits to Bangkok Prawase always organised a round table discussion about our joint research and about the clinical problems of his patients with thalassaemia. By then it was clear to me that as well as his deep devotion to his patients with thalassaemia his medical interests were becoming much broader and oriented to …

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