About Me

"I am a family physician and public health specialist, and have lived and worked in Africa, Asia and North America. I am passionate about health-care development and am a co-founder and director of Healtheon Asia.

This is a collection of my thoughts, travels and things I can't otherwise classify."
- Dr Armid Azadeh

Monday, 23 March 2009

We need someone to give a Sex Ed lecture... Hey! Where did everyone go?

Many of the initial posts on this blog will be referring to incidents or projects in the preceding 3 years, and won't be in chronological order. I've only just now become blog-literate and as such it may take quite a number of posts to get everything up to real time.

As you may have gathered already from the title of this post, I was asked to speak to the International School here in Jakarta. Twice a year, an International SOS doctor would visit the grade 9 and 10 (I think is the equivalent) to give lectures on Sexually Transmitted Disease and Contraception. As you can imagine, these aren't topics that doctors would be jumping at the opportunity of delivering. Nevertheless I accepted the "assignment" as it would get me out of the office, but immediately regretted my situation once I reviewed the material that had been traditionally used.

It was pretty bland, and used a scare/gross-you-out sort of tactic that strongly reminded me of what I didn't miss about purely clinical medicine. They grossed me out too!

Anyway, I set about completely redesigning the presentations and figured the only way I'd be able to present these topics to these kids, who probably knew a helluva lot anyhow, was to incorporate humour, graphics and diagrams where needed. Previous presentations were either too graphic, in response to requests from the school to "scare" the students, or too text-based and boring, in response to criticisms of the graphic nature of the presentations. You can never please everyone!

As it turned out, the presentations went really well, and the students were that much more comfortable to be able to ask questions in an open discussion afterwards. I've been back 3 times since to that school and have actually enjoyed giving these lectures; the questions these teenagers come up with never ceases to surprise me.

The Contraception presentation can be found here while the STD presentation may be found here.


  1. Good work dude. Am so proud of all of the amazing things that you are doing!

    Doing UCT very proud.

  2. Thanks Rob... I know you are doing awesome things too, I have no doubt!