Washington, D.C., May 20th, 2016
Dear Prof. Reiter-Theil,
Dear members of the Jury of Hans Joachim Schwager Award, Dear colleagues and friends,
I would like to thank you for this high appreciation of my work and I would like to thank you for being with me in this once-in-a-life-time moment!
I would like also to congratulate you for this initiative!
As it is stated in the award flyer: “The award aims at individuals or groups, who perform innovative or pioneer work in clinical ethics. As the implementation of a clinical ethics program often needs stamina and courage, the award is intended to encourage and support these initiatives.”
Yes, lots of stamina and courage are necessary to work in the field of clinical ethics and consultation in these highly commercial times of fragile values.
And I do feel encouraged by this reward!
I believe that all of you, practicing ethicists, felt in such or similar way when you started – hesitating, uncertain, tilting at windmills. But for me it is even more true because I am alone in the field of clinical ethics in my country and receiving this high international recognition really matters.
I came a long way to get here and I would like to express my special gratitude to Prof. Stella Reiter-Theil, my teacher and inspirer. It was in 2010 at a Conference of Public Health in my University when Prof. Reiter-Theil introduced the METAP project to the audience at the plenary and I heard of it for the first time. She invited me to join the project.
But at that time, I must admit, I did not pay due attention to the idea. Maybe I was too much focused on my pregnancy. However, the idea in filtrated into my mind and in 2013, when I listened to a presentation of some of the results of the METAP application at the Munich conference on clinical ethics and consultation, I was already determined to try to do it.
I must also admit that not many people believed that I may succeed in this in our particular health system background. I was not supported even when I decided to apply for the Award. However, I did it because it was important for me to hear the impartial opinion of the highly qualified professionals with vast experience in the field of clinical ethics and consultation.
Thank you once again for supporting me and I do hope to be able to inspire many followers in my country and not only!
Prof. Dr. Silviya Aleksandrova-Yankulovska, MD, PhD, DSc, MAS