Prevention of Common Cold!

Cold and flu season is upon us. It’s always better to take small easy steps of prevention than actually going through the sickness and  pain. Here are a few tips that will help you and people around you from getting cold and flu

Wash Your Hands

You’ve heard it many times before, but washing your hands is the single most important way to stop the spread of colds. According to the CDC, about 80% of infectious diseases are spread by touch — the cold germs get on the hands and from there into the eyes and mouth. Look at it this way: you can’t keep cold germs out of your house. But if you keep everybody’s hands clean, they’ll be much less likely to get sick.

Don’t Smoke

Cigarette smoke can irritate the airways and increase susceptibility to colds and other infections. Even exposure to passive smoke can make you (or your children) more vulnerable to colds.

Use disposable items

Use disposable items if someone in your family is infected. Disposable cups can be thrown away after each use and prevent accidental spread of the virus from sharing of cups or glasses. This is particularly important if you have young children who may try to drink from others’ cups.

Keep household surfaces clean

Door knobs, drawer pulls, keyboards, light switches, telephones, remote controls, countertops, and sinks can all harbor viruses for hours after their use by an infected person. Wipe these surfaces frequently with soap and water or a disinfectant solution.

Maintain a healthy lifestyle

While there isn’t direct evidence to show that eating well or exercising can prevent colds, maintenance of a healthy lifestyle, with adequate sleep, good nutrition and physical exercise can help ensure that your immune system is in good condition and ready to fight infection if it occurs.

Control stress

Studies have shown that people experiencing emotional stress have weakened immune systems and are more likely to catch a cold than their calmer counterparts.

Prevent the Spread of the Flu by Avoiding Germ-Infested Spaces

Another way to decrease the amount of germs you are sharing with your surroundings is to go outside. Make your surroundings bigger and give your germs and other people’s germs some space. When you are in a tight, closed space, germs are just hanging around. Avoid spending a lot of time in cramped areas.


Additional Tips

  • Use paper towels in the kitchen and bathroom for hand washing. Germs can live for several hours on cloth towels. Alternatively, have separate towels for each family member and provide a clean one for guests.
  • Throw tissues away after use. Used tissues are sources of virus that can contaminate any surface where they are left.
  • Avoid touching your face, especially the nose, mouth, and eye areas, if you are around someone with a cold or have been touching surfaces in a public area.
  • When you can’t immediately get to a washroom hand sanitizers are a great substitute to keep on hand.
  • Stay at home while you are sick
  • Avoid close contact with others, such as hugging, kissing, or shaking hands
  • Move away from people before coughing or sneezing

We Hope and wish that you don’t catch cold this season and you can help others by sharing this so that others don’t get sick either.

Article by: Anna Imtiaz (Assistant Director and Blog Manager)

Publications Support Division, IFMSA Pakistan

Flu Poster


Call for articles: MSI-37

Dear IFMSA Pakistan family,

I am very pleased to announce that the first call for article submissions to the Medical Students International Edition 37 (MSI 37) is now open!

MSI is our biannual magazine, which focuses on global health perspectives brought by medical students worldwide. It is published both in print and online, in relation to the March and August General Assemblies, and each edition has a specific theme. Previous issues are available at:

The call will be open for all sections of the magazine:

  • March Meeting 2018 Theme “Action towards Global Epidemics & Outbreak” (max 1500 words)

  • Six Standing Committee sections (max 750 words)

    • Standing Committee on Medical Education (SCOME)

    • Standing Committee on Professional Exchange (SCOPE)

    • Standing Committee on Public Health (SCOPH)

    • Standing Committee on Sexual & Reproductive Health incl. HIV/AIDS (SCORA)

    • Standing Committee on Research Exchange (SCORE)

    • Standing Committee on human Rights & Peace (SCORP)

When submitting an article, please make sure to review the following checklist:

  • Format: Your article in Word or Google docs format. Please do not send in articles in PDF format.

  • Image Quality: Images should be of high resolution (at least 300 dpi), in JPEG or PNG formats. Please do not insert images into the article files, but attach them separately to your email

  • Data: Author’s full name and NMO.

  • Photo: Author’s head shot in high resolution (at least 300 dpi) and in JPEG or PNG formats

  • References (if applicable)


Deadline for submission: December 20th, 2017 @ 23:59 GMT.

All elements must be sent to: (Please don’t forget to add [MSI37] in the subject of the e-mail)


Submission agreements:

  • Submission does not guarantee that the articles and attached material will be accepted or published;

  • Your submission will be screened to ensure that it meets minimum inclusion criteria. If it does, it may be reviewed by editors revising content to enhance its relevance, consistency, usability or to conform with IFMSA Publications standards;

  • If your submission has more than one author, names of all co-authors will be featured in the magazine. However, only the headshots of the first two authors will be featured in the magazine due to space and layout limitations. Please take that into consideration and list authors in the order you’d like them to be featured in;

  • IFMSA will not be held liable for any breach of copyright laws and the sender will be held responsible. When you submit any text or pictures, we will assume that you are the author and sole owner of the submitted material. We will also assume that you are giving MSI and IFMSA permission to use them for the purpose of publication and representation toward external partners.


We are looking forward to receiving your contributions! Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any question.

Veterans- Learn, to love thyself!

No joke – med life is hard.
And any Muggle would be very tempted to ask “why choose it and put your life in more distress than is humanely handle-able?”

Well, for some of us, this is simply a matter of parental choice that breaks no arguments. But for those (like me) who chose the constant adrenaline rush, there’s an unimaginable thrill in saving a life.
Medicine is no easy profession, it’s the hardest of them all. But there is no holier job to do than to save a life. Each day, to let fresh breath to a man dying of suffocation, to give a heartbeat to someone who flat-lined, to hear a newborn cry in it’s mother’s arms, gives intoxicating happiness; it is our rejoice.

As a matter of fact however, I haven’t yet saved a single life. For two years, I haven’t made a House M.D. diagnosis on a proper live patient or performed some miraculous life-saving emergency Code Black procedure. Honestly, I have just memorized the courses and extents of more nerves and blood vessels than I can count and learnt hundreds of physiological and pathological phenomenon, but I haven’t yet used them anywhere- all to no avail. And I am sure it’s the same for almost all second year medical students.

So sometimes, it starts to get frustrating when it feels useless and pretty stupid to study all these books, memorize thousands of terms, spend countless hours learning the anatomy of abdomen without seeing the chance of putting a scalpel on one any time soon, to know exactly what gait a person with cerebellar ataxia would have but not having one such patient walk into my fantasy clinic.

To me, the biggest anguish of a second year medical student lies in not being given the chance to be the angel that wards off death, considered skillful enough to use the magical healing powers in his hand, and deemed competent enough to at least be allowed to call himself a doctor- the chosen one.

In these times, I ask myself, “All this for passing these never-ending exams?” And there’s this voice that resonates in the cranial cavity in response: “For more to come, for the thrill of it”. And there is no greater satisfaction than in knowing the meaning of these nine words for they hold so much depth that I can’t possible explain however-much I widen their breadth. But to give you a path to make the anguish easier on you, I shall try for your sake.

Imagine reading a fantasy novel, giving in to it, and letting it take you into a parallel universe where you are the characters of that book and you can “feel what they feel”. Very similarly, if you read a medical textbook like it’s the story of you, you will enter an alternate dimension deep within your soul. A new aura of learning surrounds you, engulfs you. Your reading of the book is no longer a daydream, it is knowledge of self.

When reading a medical textbook, you are exploring the human body – God’s most complex creation – and making friends with yourself. You make friends with new anatomies. You make friends with the beauties you see under the microscope. You know that it’s not just some patient you are going to see years later; it’s you, here and now. You can almost glimpse the soul of the person who’s body you are doing some spotting or dissection on. You familiarize yourself with your liver, you get to know what your hepatocytes look like, what they do. You learn how your body moves, how you talk, how you think all this genius stuff. And the best part is that you know that you are not just making new concepts, that its not just clustered words out of a textbook in your head, its beautiful new synaptic connections and neural pathways, its birth to new chemicals. You can see the marvel of this creation and you can see in yourself every fragment of it. And when this happens, you feel this sense of belonging, as a wave of serotonin washes over you.

Medicine is not all about curing dying people. Sometimes, it has to be about looking into a mirror and learning what no piece of glass or criticism could ever teach you. Sometimes it is a way to your salvation. Sometimes it is the beginning of a new you, the learned you who knows itself. Sometimes the prospect of doing what you are best at and excited for must wait for the sake of learning mankind’s ultimate lesson: patience. And sometimes for becoming the excellent you must first learn what is waiting out there for us all to be learnt- humility.

Written by: Khair ul Barayya

Assistant Director and Editor Publications support division director

We as medical students go through a lot, A LOT of stuff. Veterans is an initiative, taken by IFMSA Pakistan Publications support division, to make all the medical students realize that they are not alone and to share experiences that may help someone. If you think your experience can help someone, don’t wait a second, pen it down and send it to us on because every one of us is worthy of being helped and almost of all of us need it at sometime. Share before it’s too late for someone.

Veterans: PROFs will end like every other rainy season

We as medical students go through a lot, A LOT of stuff. Veterans is an initiative, taken by IFMSA Pakistan Publications support division, to make all the medical students realize that they are not alone and to share experiences that may help someone. If you think your experience can help someone, don’t wait a second, pen it down and send it to us on because every one of us is worthy of being helped and almost of all of us need it at sometime. Share before it’s too late for someone.

‘Life is beautiful!’ something which a med student never says but yeah it is. I
totally agree the never-ending stress of this field can make us indifferent to the
beautiful world around us but there’s a solution to every problem like there’s a
medicine for every ailment. I know my solution won’t help you but it might
give you some perspective. Life is a rollercoaster, it is exciting and fearful at
the same time but you would want to do it all again once the rollercoaster
Let’s talk about profs (just the thought of it gives u jitters doesn’t it!) If
someone would put prof synonymous to extreme stress in a dictionary then I
wouldn’t disagree. We might know where the two hundred and six bones in
our body are and what a neuron comprises of! but to deal with stress is
something we are not good at. My personal experience may shed some light
on this matter. My 1 st prof, I couldn’t sleep at night totally lost, consumed by stress. I coped with never ending fear of failure through the warm and mellow words of
various books and articles which I used to read. The thing I realized after
reading one was that they take you to an alternate world where you become
part of what you are reading and every other thing including stress vanishes,
which brings a change to your thoughts and all that you feel is a relaxed state
of mind. You are introduced to the new world, you get to meet other people,
you get to know them and most importantly you get to feel what they are
feeling which takes all your worries away. Reading is a metaphor for all the
things that make you smile, laugh and even cry sometimes!

I am not saying neglect your studies…Work hard; harder than you ever have but don’t lose hope. Don’t fall into the dark pit of depression. You are precious. Make sure to channelize your stress into something positive that will make you a better, stronger and more efficient person. Take a break, do something you love and chop chop, back to work again. Give yourself a little credit, you have made it this far. I just want to say don’t beat yourself up, it’s only an exam and you’ll have to face many more in the coming year, you might not succeed in all of them but that won’t define you, they never do! Just take a deep breath and for once do something that makes you happy. In the words of Bruce Wayne, “Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”.

Written by: Abdul Mateen

Assistant Director Publications Support Division



IFMSA Pakistan making its mark in the European Sting!

Read as Humna Tayyab from KEMU-LC and Ayesha Zahid from SIMS-LC pinned another laurel on the shoulder of IFMSA Pakistan. Read as both of the writers express their views about studying medicine abroad in their own unique and eloquent styles in a magazine affiliated with IFMSA “The European Sting”.

Medical students: The need for emigration by Humna Tayyab



Why do medical students need to emigrate to become doctors in 2017? by Ayesha Zahid


A big kudos to both of you for representing IFMSA Pakistan at an international level. Publications support division and IFMSA Pakistan is proud of you and is looking forward to contributions from you in the future…

MSI-36 is out and IFMSA Pakistan is Proud!

IFMSA Pakistan is  feeling proud to add another feather to its cap by announcing that not one or two, but four articles are published in the official magazine of IFMSA “Medical Students International” 36th edition.

Congratulations to Humna Tayyab, Manaqibb Zain Ali Khan, Mahnoor Mohydin and Bilal Rehman for representing IFMSA Pakistan.

Here is the list of the articles published

  • Crisis in Human Resources for Health by Hamnah Tayyab
  • Vision of Hope by Manaqibb Zain
  • Toxi-posium poison prevention campaign by Mahnoor Mohydin
  • We do not forget by Muhammad Bilal Rehman

For all the folks out there the 36th edition of MSI-Medical Students International is out. Head over to the following link to read the articles and do give us your feedback.

Call for Articles: European Sting (Gender Equality and Medicine in 21st Century) Deadline: 25th October

The European Sting is a political newspaper that aims to bring unbiased and trustworthy information to their readers not only about European Affairs, but about almost any political, economical and social topic. Furthermore, the Sting welcomes its readers to take part in this constructive and critical dialogue! As per the IFMSA’s partnership with the Sting, any medical student worldwide is able to voice their ideas, concerns, opinions and dreams in a global online magazine. During this call, we will be accepting articles on the following topic:

Gender Equality and Medicine in 21st Century

If you are interested in the topic above and you would like to share your ideas with us and the world, please send a full article to no later than by the 25th of October.

The incoming articles need to adhere to the following specifications:

a)    Clearly defined brief title
b)    Up to 500 words article body text
c)    Profile picture of the writer
d)    100 words brief resume of the writer
e)    email address of the writer
Please send us your article as an attachment to your letter, and not as the actual letter. Also bear in mind that articles must be in a format that allows for them to be edited using a word processor. Hand-written and/or scanned articles will not be accepted.


Call for Articles: The STING

As per the IFMSA’s partnership with the Sting, any medical student worldwide is able to voice their ideas, concerns, opinions and dreams in a global online magazine. During this call, we will be accepting articles on the following topic:

“Interviews with ourselves – the mental health of (future) health professionals.”

If you are interested in the topic above and you would like to share your ideas with us and the world, please send a full article to no later than by the 27th of September.

The incoming articles need to adhere to the following specifications:

a) Clearly defined brief title
b) Up to 500 words article body text
c) Profile picture of the writer
d) 100 words brief resume of the writer
e) email address of the writer

Please send us your article as an attachment to your letter, and not as the actual letter. Also bear in mind that articles must be in a format that allows for them to be edited using a word processor. Hand-written and/or scanned articles will not be accepted.

InkPill Edition: 2017 Rolling out in less than a Month!

InkPill, the official magazine of IFMSA Pakistan, Addressing some of the very basic and important aspects of community health will be rolled out soon. The magazine is a source of information that can contribute in the improvement of community health all over Pakistan. This year the theme is “Preventive Health” focusing on some of the primal diseases in Pakistan  and means of their prevention.

Here is a teaser and sneak peak on the material included in the magazine.



DOs and DON’Ts of Health: QAMC-LC

Pakistan has been ranked 149th among 188 countries in the first global assessment of countries progress towards the United Nations Health related sustainable development goals. It reflects the health status of the country and as we all know that majority of the population live in villages so this difference is created by the periphery of this country. People living in cities are comparatively knowledgeable about the health and related issues. But still it is overwhelming and people of Pakistan need full attention regarding health issues both in cities and villages. Awareness in the country is prevailing but we need to accelerate it as health hazards are also accelerating with even greater pace. People know what is good and what is bad for them and their health but health isn’t their first priority and that’s an issue. We have to change the mindset and it takes some time but as medical students and as SCOPH heroes we are not going to step back. We have to emphasize the importance of health as their first priority.
According to WHO report no nation has reached the objective to end childhood overweight or to fully eliminate infections like HIV and TB. But actually they are getting it better the situation isn’t the way it was few years ago. Today Health standards are better and people are getting awareness and that is what we have to do in our country ” Health the first priority” and demonstrating ” Do’s and Don’ts of health”. So here we are focusing on following issues and spreading the concept of health, which has been highlighted by government and other research teams, targeting the periphery.
Pakistan is facing a double burden of disease (BoD), the burden is higher in the poor, and many of these conditions can be controlled at relatively low-cost interventions and best practices through primary and secondary care levels. Communicable diseases, maternal health issues and under-nutrition dominate and constitute about half of the BoD. In young children, diarrhea and respiratory illness remain as the major killers. Maternal deaths due to preventable causes like sepsis, hemorrhage and hypertensive crises are common. Pakistan is one of the three remaining countries where Polio is still endemic.
Moreover, Pakistan has an endemicity of hepatitis B and C in the general population with 7.6% affected individuals; the 5th highest tuberculosis burden in the world, has focal geographical area of malaria endemicity, and an established HIV concentration among high risk groups. Other vaccine preventable diseases and new emerging infections call for strengthening disease surveillance and response system uniformly across the country. Pakistan has one of the highest prevalence of under-weight children in
South Asia. Similarly stunting, micro nutrient deficiencies and low birth weight babies contribute to already high level of mortality in mothers and children.
The common underlying factors for non-communicable diseases including lifestyle, nutrition and smoking have not been addressed adequately. Access to and affordability of essential medicines is low. Moreover, there are geographical disparities in
coverage between provinces, districts and rural-urban area. Evidence shows that low income groups are likely to have lower levels of health, nutrition, immunization and family planning coverage.
Pakistan has a mixed health system, which includes government infrastructure, parastatal health system, private sector, civil society and philanthropic contributors. By such awareness we can enforce public health laws promulgated, related to smoking, drug safety, organ donation and transplant, safe blood transfusion, environmental protection, food safety etc. And this can lead to healthy communities.
In our project we the SCOPH heroesScreenshot_2017-07-01-15-49-43 went to a Basti in Multan (Ganji basti) on 2nd July 2017 and spread awareness regarding health and related basic Do’s and Don’ts. The interaction was started with some simple questions
       “what is Health?”
       “Why do we need it?”
       “What are the problems related to health?”.
They gave an account of all the associated issues and highlighted the major problems.
Hepatitis is one of the problem in that community so prevention techniques for hepatitis were told.
Screenshot_2017-07-01-15-44-22•Use of clean water and its benefits.
•Avoiding the reuse of surgical instruments and infected blades.
•Importance of vaccination etc.
Hepatitis A is one of the world’s most common viral infections. Although most patients recover within two months, the disease can produce significant morbidity, which can be largely prevented with appropriate immunization strategies. They were not well aware of vaccination so the importance of vaccination was highlighted. Benefits of balanced diet was demonstrated as they didn’t have any concept of balanced diet. Juices were distributed and awareness related to healthy food was spread. Unhygienic living conditions were Screenshot_2017-07-01-15-54-03observed so importance of cleanliness was highlighted. A wide range of discussion was done on various Health topics and it included a public talk related to Do’s and Don’ts of healthy life style and knowledge of non-communicable diseases moreover it will be repeated in the same community for evaluation and betterment. The same activity will be taken out in other peripheral communities so that no one remains unaware.
This activity was fruitful as awareness was spread in that community where people were not knowledgeable. It will include a lot of students and more villages for awareness regarding “Do’s and Don’ts of health” in future. The message of SCOPH will reach to so many people who are in need and betterment will be observed in evaluation
Event Report by: Ahmad Danial Bosan (local public officer QAMC-LC)