Head & Senior Consultant
Division of Foot & Ankle Surgery
Division of Hip & Knee Surgery
University Orthopaedics, Hand & Reconstructive Microsurgery Cluster
National University Hospital
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine
National University of Singapore
Professor Shamal Das De has been a role model and mentor to the many students that he has taught at the National University of Singapore (NUS) since 1981. He has always elicited curiosity among his students through problem-based scenarios. He always strives to illustrate exemplary bedside behaviour, professionalism and medical ethics, while inculcating Orthopaedic principles. His philosophy: teaching must be fun and made lively, and not a boring didactic monologue! Comments from students included “You have been an amazing tutor and have taught us things beyond Orthopaedics” and “I’ll forever keep in mind the advice you gave us about carrying ourselves professionally as medical students. It’s been really eye-opening attending your clinics, seeing you not only demonstrating physical skills, but also interacting with patients so well. ”
In his 34 years as a teacher in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine (NUS Medicine), Prof Das De introduced and was involved in a number of teaching initiatives. He was the Undergraduate Director of the Department from 1985 to 2013. He was a member of the Curriculum Review Examination Committee (CREC) at the NUS from 1991 to 1996 and the chief co-ordinator of the Year Three to Year Five curriculum for the then Faculty of Medicine.
During this period he was also instrumental in introducing teaching initiatives in Orthopaedics, such as Problem-Based Learning (PBL), ambulatory clinic teaching, as well as redefining the Orthopaedic core curriculum and organising two seminars in Ethics and Communication during the students’ Orthopaedic postings. In addition, he held a number of teaching workshops with the Centre for Development of Teaching and Learning (CDTL) to standardise student assessments and Orthopaedic teaching techniques. He also held a secondary appointment as the Chief of the Emergency Medicine Department (EMD) at the NUH from 1991 to 1993. Together with Associate Professor Shirley Ooi, his then registrar, he introduced a teaching programme in the department.
Some of his teaching accolades include: the “Best Tutor Award” in 1998, the “Teaching Excellence Award” (NUS Medicine) in 2001, Certification of Commendation (Dean’s Office, NUS Medicine) in 2012 and 2014, and the “Role model of the Class of 2012 and 2014”.
In addition to undergraduate teaching, he has been the co-ordinator of the postgraduate Orthopaedic programme from 1985 to 1996 and Convenor of the Annual Postgraduate Orthopaedic Course from 1989 to 1997. Presently he is in the Core Faculty of the Orthopaedic Residency Programme.
He is also the chairman of the Orthopaedic Master of Medicine examination committee and examiner for undergraduate and postgraduate examinations in Singapore and Malaysia, including the FRCS Orthopaedics (Edinburgh). He was Chairman of the University Faculty Promotion and Tenure Committee (FPTC) at the NUS and was a member of the University Promotion and Tenure Committee (UPTC) till June 2012.
Prof Das De has also made numerous contributions to the field of Orthopaedic Surgery, with a special interest in hip, knee and foot and ankle surgery. He has authored over 90 scientific research articles and contributed to 18 book chapters and delivered over 290 conference papers, posters and guest lectures locally and internationally. He is on the editorial board of two journals and is a reviewer of numerous local and international prestigious journals.
Recently he was invited as the Chief Guest of the Sri Lankan Orthopaedic Annual Scientific Meeting and the Guest Lecturer at the Annual Indian Orthopaedic Meeting where he gave a number of plenary and guest lectures. He delivered the prestigious “Professor AK Saha” Memorial Lecture in India in 2011 and the Donald Gunn Lecture in Singapore in 2009.
Currently Head of the Foot and Ankle Division and Senior Consultant of the Hip and Knee Division in the Orthopaedic Department, Prof Das De also holds a number of administrative duties at the National University Hospital.
His many contributions and strong leadership in clinical education in the National University Health System and Singapore over the last 34 years make Professor Shamal Das De a truly Outstanding Mentor.