19 January 2022

Kick Off Day For “Healthy Mahidol in New Normal” sets the tone for more health-conscious institutions

AUN Writer Team

By the AUN-HPN Secretariat

On December 22, 2021, at Mahidol Sitthakan Auditorium Mahidol University, Salaya Campus, Prof. Dr. Banchong Mahaisavariya, President of Mahidol University gave the opening remarks about the launch of Healthy Mahidol in New Normal: “Mahidol Health, the New Way'' event, together with Dr. Choltis Thirathiti, ASEAN University Network (AUN) Executive Director, and Dr. Wiwat Rojanapithayakon, Advisor to the Working Group Committee of Mahidol University in the ASEAN University Network on Health Promotion (AUN-HPN) as honourable guests. Professor Dr. Phudit Techattiwat, MD, Director of the ASEAN Institute for Health Development, The Secretary- General of AUN-HPN and Chair of the Working Group Committee of the AUN-HPN network made a speech on the progress of the event’s activities. initiative 
Professor Banchong Mahisavariya, President of Mahidol University, stated that Mahidol University held the development and operation of health promotion along with upgrading in policy and other practical aspects in high regards. The university prioritised the concerns over its staff and students’ ability to navigate through the current global pandemic situation. Mahidol University also focused on regional and global level ,  as presented by the development and utilization of the AUN System and Infrastructure Framework-Health University Framework. Since Covid-19 pandemic has brought changes to work and daily life patterns, leading to “New Normal” ways of life, Mahidol University recognizes the emerging concerns about technology disruption, social distancing, and work-life-balance management, etc., and have implemented several policies and measures to assist university personnels and students affected by the pandemic.
Dr. Choltis Dhirathiti, AUN Executive Director, expressed his appreciation to Mahidol University for being a good example of health promotion among higher education institutions. The university has been playing an important role in advancing health promotion policies with a focus on environment and policy developments; such are conducive to the mission to promote a healthy body of personnel and students in the university, and ensuring continuous improvement in the university’s health promotion activities.
Dr. Wiwat Rojanapithayakorn, Advisory of Executive Director of AUN-HPN stated that the event’s activities proved Mahidol University’s excellence in public health promotion at national and regional levels through its role being the host of AUN-HPN. The establishment of the University Health Promotion Framework and the development of assessment criteria for the level of health promotion in higher education institutions has reinforced the thematic network and the university’s dedication to improving the health and well-being of everyone within the educational institution as well as the general public.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Phudit Tejativaddhana, M.D., Director of ASEAN Institute for Health Development, Executive Director for AUN-HPN, Chair of Working Group Committee strengthened the purpose of the event, which was to enhance the awareness of health promotion activities among Mahidol University and other higher education institutions’ stakeholders at all levels. The initiative is scheduled to be operated from December 2021 to March 2022, consisting of 4 main activities: 1) MU- Healthy Lifestyle activities 2) “Healthy Body” activities promoting good health into a new “Normal Way” 3) Fun online teaching activities 4) Zero Tolerance Areas campaign activities among students. The participants of these activities would include universities’ administrators, Deans, staff representatives and students from all involved departments and institutions.

The success of this event was a result of the great cooperation between Mahidol University’s Working Group Committee, which comprises 6 faculties and institutes, including the Institute for Population and Social Research, Institute of Nutrition, Institute for Innovative Learning, Faculty of Medical Technology, Faculty of Veterinary, Human Resources Division and The Sub-Working group. Mahidol University’s administrators, students, student affairs division and university staff were also the important supporters of this event.