India’s most famous land mark, the Taj Mahal at sunrise located in Agra.

It’s been whirlwind start to the new year, which began with record attendance at the SCCM Critical Care Congress in Miami.  Immediately on the heels of Congress, the Society stepped up to respond to the earthquake that devastated Haiti.  With our team freshly arrived home, several others have deployed to Hyderabad, India, where we will participate in the Indian Society of Critical Care Medicine (ISCCM) annual meeting, “Criticare 2010.”

As the CEO of SCCM, it’s my honor to join the elected leadership in representing the Society at a number of important meetings such as Criticare 2010.  SCCM president Judi Jacobi, PharmD, FCCM, and immediate past-president Mitchell Levy, MD, FCCM, as well as Ken Klarich, from the SCCM FCCS staff, and I are here in Hyderabad.

The City of Hyderabad, originally named Bhagyanagar in ancient times, was renamed in 1512.  Legend has it that the Shah rode out from Golconda Fort to meet his beloved, braving the flood waters of the local river.  He re-christened her Hyder Mahal and named the city Hyderabad in her honor.  It was during this period that the area developed, becoming famous for its diamonds, steel and printed cloth drawings.

India is a country of contrasts, where you see modern development alongside ancient buildings — a contrast of wealth and poverty.  Here in Hyderabad, the convention center and meeting hotel are pristine and boast modern designs.

During our time here, we will be engaging with SCCM members in India and discussing with colleagues about how we can continue to develop and strengthen our partnership.  India already hosts many Fundamental Critical Care Support (FCCS) courses and recently added the Fundamental Disaster Management (FDM) course to their line-up of training programs.  We share articles between our news publications (Critical Connections), and we welcome representatives from ISCCM on the SCCM Critical Care Congress planning committee.  This week, we look forward to discussing new ways to work together to improve care of the critical ill and injured in India, the United States and around the world.