Clinicians versus robots?

Colin Kerr

Posted: Friday, October 9, 2020

Dr Jennifer Kim

The winner of this year’s John Henahan Prize is Dr Jennifer Kim, a Specialist Registrar at the Manchester Royal Eye Hospital, UK.

The topic for this year’s essay was Will Clinicians Be Replaced By A Robot To Perform Cataract Surgery?Emanuel Rosen, chief medical editor of EuroTimes and chairman of the judging panel, congratulated Dr Kim on winning the prize and said that all the submissions were of the highest quality.

“All of the entries were very well written even if I did not always agree with the content. In summary, no writer believes that robots in anterior segment ophthalmic surgery will be anything but a companion device for anterior segment ophthalmic surgery.”

Dr Rosen was joined on the judging panel by Thomas Kohnen, chairman of the ESCRS Publications Committee; José Güell, former president of the ESCRS; Oliver Findl, chairman of the ESCRS Young Ophthalmologists Committee; Sean Henahan, editor of EuroTimes; Paul McGinn, editor of EuroTimes, Robert Henahan, contributing editor EuroTimes and Sorcha Ní Dhubhghaill, a member of the EuroTimes International Editorial Board and winner of the Henahan prize in 2012.

Dr Kim studied medicine at Manchester Medical School, United Kingdom. She has recently completed her training at Manchester Royal Eye Hospital and is due to start her Corneal Fellowship at Birmingham and Midland Eye Centre. She has a special interest in Cornea and ocular surface diseases and after her fellowship, she hopes to pursue a career in this field.

“Winning this prize has allowed me to connect with colleagues and the ophthalmic community worldwide during this difficult time,” said Dr Kim.

“Writing is an integral part of medical training and an opportunity to reflect and express yourself. In some ways, writing parallels with operating – it takes time to cultivate and no matter how proficient you are, it is always challenging and you learn something new each time. When working in a clinical environment we have to keep a poker face whilst carrying a huge amount of emotion, and this can be difficult to balance as a trainee. Many of us are feeling additional stress from change in, or lack of, routine and overall uncertainty around COVID-19. Jotting down my thoughts regularly during this time has helped me to clear my mind and stay grounded. I would like to thank all the frontline healthcare workers in every corner of the world and also the ESCRS for giving me this prestigious award,” she said.

The Henahan prize is named in honour of John Henahan, who edited EuroTimes from 1996 to 2001. “John’s work has inspired a generation of young doctors and journalists, many of whom continue to work for EuroTimes. The prize will not only bring satisfaction to the winner and credit to all the contributors, but may enhance all their prospects of pursuing a medical writing aspect to their future careers. We look forward to their further contributions to EuroTimes and the Journal of Cataract & Refractive Surgery,” said Dr Rosen. Details of next year’s competition will be announced in the coming months.