Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya becomes the UNESCO Bio-ethics Unit and Nodal Centre for Sri Lanka



The UNESCO Chair in Bio-ethics has established UNESCO bio-ethics unit and the nodal centre for Sri Lankan programme at Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya. The Writ of establishment was awarded to the University by Professor Russel D’Souza, Head, Asia Pacific Division, UNESCO Chair in Bioethics Haifa in a ceremony held at Faculty of Medicine, Ragama on 2nd April 2018. It was accepted by Dean, Faculty of Medicine, Prof Nilanthi de Silva, on behalf of the Vice Chancellor, University of Kelaniya. With the establishment of this Unit, Sri Lanka joins the global network of UNESCO Chair Bio-ethics to promote bio-ethics teaching and research.
Writs were also awarded to Dr Harischandra Gambheera, as the Head of Sri Lankan Programme, Prof Nilanthi de Silva as the Patron, Prof Madawa Chandratilake as the Head, Dr Pavithra Godamunne as the Secretary of Bio-ethics Unit and Nodal Centre in Sri Lanka, and to the steering committee members. The steering committee is represented by different medical faculties in Sri Lanka.
The ceremony was followed by an experience-sharing symposium on teaching bio-ethics to undergraduate medical students, which was represented by eight medical schools in Sri Lanka. The discussions will be taken to the next level by surveying the coverage of universal bio-ethics components in undergraduate curricula in Sri Lankan medical schools and proposings the way and means of teaching those areas more effectively. The UNESCO bio-ethics nodal centre at Faculty of Medicine, University of Kelaniya will coordinate the future activities. Many members if the academic staff of the Faculty of Medicine participated in the ceremony and the symposium.