Branding Allied Health Sciences

The term allied health embraces a great many professions, but there is little agreement as to the exact numbers. Equally unclear is the proportion of the overall health workforce represented by allied health professionals. The inability to portray a clear sense of the identity of allied health results in the following kinds of shortcomings:

Understanding and support are difcult to generate because the term allied health is not clear in the minds of the general public, and the prospective students are unaware of the many attractive career possibilities in allied health discipline.

Some disciplines may be perceived as being part of the allied health realm, but this is not recognized at the level of their respective professional associations. Adequate inuence is difcult to bear upon elected ofcials who are required to provide funding to address the workforce problems because of the fractured nature of the allied health discipline. Many students enrolled in allied health institutions nish their education without being aware of the fact that they are allied health professionals.

Unlike other kinds of health professions where the names of institution contain words such as nursing and medicine, only 25 of the 113 institutions in Pakistan offering such courses, have the word allied health in their names. In some cases, the omission is justied because the institution includes other kinds of programs such as nursing and pharmacy as well. In other instances, however, there is a greater

preference for the title to be health sciences or health professions. The lack of a specic identier in the name of the academic institution is not a strong inducement for students or faculty to consider themselves as part of allied health, institution. The Faculty of Allied Health Sciences at the University of Lahore being the largest faculty of this subject in the country, with 11 departments offering undergraduate to Doctoral degree programs has taken the lead in allied health education and research in the region.

The Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences is a step forward to make this faculty as centre of excellence in Allied Health Sciences. I can foresee that many journals will emerge from this Journal in near future and will create a wave of motivation in the allied health professionals to start publishing their clinical as well as research work.

Recognizing the consequences that stem from the aforementioned deciencies, the Faculty of Allied Health Sciences at the University of Lahore, which was established in Feb, 2012 has formed a Branding Task Force. Members of the Task force met in Lahore on July 18, 2016 with representatives of a company that specializes in branding. The purpose of branding is to identify and disseminate information about the “One Thing” that distinguishes allied health from everything else in the health eld. Achieving that aim will help the audience remember the name of allied health, know what it represents, and perceive the value that allied health offers.

Prof. Dr. Syed Amir Gilani َََِِِ

Chief Editor
Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences


Promotion of Extensive Higher Education in The Field of Allied Health Sciences in Pakistan

It is the prime time to analyze and implement the goals of extensive higher education in Allied Health Sciences (AHS) through profound planning for the future of Pakistan. These objectives are supposed to require comprehensive attention by competent authorities regarding the accreditation, extensive health education, promotion, applied research and outstanding publications.

The Punjab Government in collaboration with University of Health Sciences (UHS) had launched 17 new BSc (Hons) courses besides two five-year programmes including Doctor of Pharmacy (Pharm. D) and Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT).

The initiative was taken keeping in view the global importance of AHS and to replace the paramedics by the qualified allied health ‘scientists’. The scheme was also meant to accommodate those students who failed to get admission in MBBS in government and private colleges due to difference of meager ratio of aggregate scores.

In 2012, the Visionary Chairman BOG of University of Lahore established tha FAHS at University of Lahore. This decision brought hope for thousands of disappointed Pre-Medical students who failed to get admission in MBBS/BDS in Medical Colleges. During these four years, the faculty of Allied Health Sciences at University of Lahore became the largest faculty offering 24 AHS programs from Undergraduate to Ph.D through its eight departments.

It was not an easy task as there were challenges from same mindsets of senior people from medical and dental colleges inside the university as well as from outside. First ever Ph.D Program in Physical therapy and medical diagnostic ultrasound were offered along with Ph.D in

Diet & Nutrition, Virology, Immunology Public Health, Radiological Sciences and Medical Imaging . Till Spring 2015, this faculty had 3400 students in eight departments. After this success story of FAHS in University of Lahore, many other universities from public and private sector started offering these programs, thus, students and their parents started having great deal of awareness about these courses and career prospects in Pakistan and abroad.

Now, the FAHS with 11 departments and one research unit is publishing its own four journals for different disciplines. It has emerged as leading faculty in Pakistan with more than 300 published articles in 2017. This faculty is strengthened with 23 Ph.D teachers and first ever Ph.D Physical Therapy in Pakistan is graduating soon.

It is suggested to have framework and service structure for these graduates in the country. We can foresee the bright carrier of these graduates nationally as well as internationally.

Prof. Dr. Syed Amir Gilani

Editor in Chief
Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences


Guidelines for Research

World has become a global village and the scientific community is working by keeping pace with each other to build a common edifice of knowledge and awareness. The purpose is to find solutions to the challenging problems the world is facing these days in every sector whether its health, allied health, pharmaceutical industry, physical sciences or engineering etc. Developing countries including Pakistan are also trying hard to be a part of international research community. Government of Pakistan including Higher Education Commission of Pakistan, are putting a lot of efforts to promote science and research in Pakistani Institutions.

A new researcher or student has several questions in mind about starting of a project. Depending upon the type of study; whether basic or applied, a researcher should first develop a research question or hypothesis in his mind. Research question should be addressing the most recent challenge faced by the society. It should be having a wide scope, benefitting a diversity of strata and their problems.

Data mining and survey of literature should be done afterwards to see the types of researches done previously on the same area. It will help the researcher in identification of the magnitude of the problem, current situation of the problem area, existing knowledge and helps determining the direction of further action. A well maintained record should be kept during all the research process and all sources of information should be noted.

As it is useless to reinvent the wheel, so a researcher takes up the task from the same point (done by some other researchers) and contributes in his own way. Utility, scope, implementation and applications of the project should be assessed in order to provide more benefit to the society. Smart selection of methodology approaches should be adopted according to the international standards to prove the same phenomenon or question. The criteria of the most appropriate method is that it should be cost effective, provides evident outcomes and should be reproducible in any types of circumstances or environments across the globe.

Last step after completion of the research is to present the data in the form of an article. This is most important part and good presentation is necessary. The other serious issues to be considered are plagiarism, copyright, conflict of interest information and acknowledgement of all funding sources. References should be properly cited. These are the basic guidelines for motivated, keen and passionate students to conduct a valid and successful research. Wishing all the best to the upcoming young researchers!

Prof. Dr. Syed Amir Gilani

Editor in Chief
Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences


Role of Editor and His Team

Publication of a journal or a book is a team work involving multidisciplinary fields, expertise and cooperative members. The members may include an Editor in chief, Editor/s, reviewers, statistician/s, proof reading/English grammar experts, designers, IT experts, co-ordinator/s, field of specialization experts etc.

An editor is basically the leader of the team who is supervising the whole work to make it coherent and presentable. He should be well aware of the publication rules and ethics. He should always be co operative with the team members and guide them accordingly. As this is a very tedious job, the editor has to remain always cool headed. Editor should have the quality of converting the ordinarily presented work into a masterpiece according to the national as well as international standards.

A study can be an original article, review article, systematic meta-analysis, case report etc. An editor also invites articles from the professional experts/ scientists in that particular field. As, editor is the captain of the ship, he designs the main theme and outlook of the journal and adds the required ingredients accordingly.

Author/s has to write, compile and present the data in a publishable and presentable manner. Experiments should be conducted in a scientific manner and with honesty. There should be no plagiarism and the study should be properly conducted and cited. Gift authorships should be highly discouraged. Field experts/reviewers/specialists are the ones who have to evaluate the scientific standard of the work. If the study is in accordance with the proper guidelines, contributes to the already existing knowledge and upto date. Statistician analyzes the data and tables and checks the significance.

Technical experts assess the format, technical aspects, check if all the requirements are met for an accepted article or not. Co-ordinators are the laison person who communicates regularly with all the authors, reviewers, members on regular basis and send reminders in case of any delay in response from them. We can’t ignore the role of any member of the team in the publication process. Everyone has his/her own expertise and contribution towards the final shape of the article and hence, the journal. Final copy of the journal is evaluated by all the team members and published after their approval.

Prof. Dr. Syed Amir Gilani

Editor in Chief
Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences


Emerging trends in Allied Health Sciences

We are living in the era of information technology and the span between the thought process and execution of an idea is ever squeezing, making the workplace of today immensely competitive. The somewhat audacious yet ambitious research endeavors of today are encouraging the researcher to logically step over the boundaries from one paradigm to another – may that be any eld of sciences. The hospital are studying the effects of organizational culture on the performance of their medical staff while the marketers are engaging in neurosciences to map out the purchase decision and thought process of the consumers. The responsibility to prepare the young minds for such diverse and challenging workplace in Allied Health settings, solely lies on the shoulders of academicians.

Like other science disciplines, there is an ocean of information and knowledge in Allied Health Sciences; both theoretical and empirical, readily available just a few clicks away. The trick to profoundly utilize that information for a quality research project, lies in the meticulous approach towards identifying a problem and then setting things in motion.

Given its tilt toward natural science and the generic trend in its research projects, Allied Health Sciences mostly engages in quantitative approach, we should also encourage our faculty members as well as students to take a qualitative approach (interpretivist paradigm or theory building or induction)or mix method approach (pragmatism). Although the quantitative approach imparts a sense of calculated measures, settings and interpretation of results in the minds of the students; it might deprive them of knowledge of underlying emotional and social dilemmas of the patients they are working on. This gap can be scientically lled through qualitative approach where the researcher is axiological (ethically) bound to immerse in the context or problem at hand, be a part of it and study it from the inside. Only then he or she would be able to understand the subjective experience of the patients and draw realistic results that would not only address the problem at hand but also be a rigorous contribution to the body of literature. We must teach, encourage and support our students to be brave, to take a novel approach towards contemporary problem in Allied Health Sciences. Only then we would be able to shift from trend of study repetition to ambidextrous development of new knowledge and its application through state of the art materials.

Prof. Dr. Syed Amir Gilani

Editor in Chief
Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences


Public Health and Human Behavior

When the term “Pubic Health” is put forward, it not only prompts the scientic school of thought but also the artistic one. This discipline; public health, is an interdisciplinary in nature and plays its part on a multifaceted approach to the overall wellbeing of the humans – including prevention of diseases and increasing life span by the way of organized efforts and well dened options for people, organizations, institutes, nations and continents. . “Health” encompasses the deeper meaning of physical, mental as well as social well-being. Generally speaking it branches out to the following areas; Environmental health, community health, behavioral health, health economics, public policy, mental health and occupational safety, gender issues in health, sexual and reproductive health are other important subelds. Since it all converges at one single point of human wellbeing, it also arrives at the inherent and paradoxical nature of human choices – there it is more of an art than science that brings out the true color or solution to a problematic situation. For example how to educate people and promote awareness, how to get people (remote rural areas) who are living decades behind the civilized world to take a certain pill or boil water or properly manage human waste. A researcher in the eld of public health must equip him/herself with such tools that can turn an unfavorable situation in to favorable one so that ground realities could be unearthed. This requires a profound understanding of human behavior, and when we are required to understand the lived experience, cultural and social meanings and thick description & analysis of a case or phenomena – we need qualitative research. Qualitative research demand the researcher to immerse in the phenomena of interest and study

it as a vigilant participant. Take notes through keen observations, details structured and semistructured interviews, explore documents for textual support – all these approaches will help the researcher to come up with detailed and thick description and enable him/her to draw realistic and trustworthy conclusions. And truly understanding the problem is a part of the solution, after all.

Prof. Dr. Syed Amir Gilani

Editor in Chief
Asian Journal of Allied Health Sciences