Established in 2012, the SASSM currently represents 132 sexual medicine specialists from India, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Iran, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. One hundred six members have opted for joint membership with the ISSM.
Earlier this year, the SASSM held its inaugural conference in Bangalore, India, which was attended by approximately 300 delegates from four countries. Sexual medicine specialists participated in workshops, symposia, and lectures. Speakers included ISSM board members and other experts from the local area.
In its affiliation request, the SASSM explained some of the sexual medicine challenges found in South Asia. Despite a great need for sexual healthcare, most doctors in the region do not have access to professional meetings, training, and literature. Dialogue between experts is lacking.
There are also sexual medicine problems unique to the area, such as the “dhat syndrome”- an anxiety over semen loss.
Many doctors are unable or unwilling to travel to international meetings. However, the SASSM believes that local meetings would be well-attended.
Its next conference will be held in Bangladesh in 2015, with biennial conferences to follow. Regional workshops and meetings for members, doctors, and counselors are also planned, with the first taking place next year in Sri Lanka.
The SASSM intends to create a “bank” of educational resources, such as videos, available for member use. A pool of experts will be available to give lectures and workshops in the region.
The SASSM is currently updating its website and plans a case discussion forum, where members may seek and provide advice on problem cases they encounter in their day-to-day work. A committee of experts will also contribute to the forum.
More information about the SASSM can be found on its website: http://www.sassm.in