UP VOICE VOL.52 – November 2020

The Official Newsletter of the University of Puthisastra (UP)-Vol.52 November 2020 Download

UP Faculty of Dentistry publishes again in top international dental journal

Internationally universities (and UP) gain reputation primarily by two things:

1.Quality of learning and teaching producing excellent skilled graduates who get the best jobs and the highest salaries. UP has a dedicated Learning and Teaching department, its very own Learning Platform (UPOP) and E-Learning center to improve quality teaching to international level.

2.Research Quality. UP has published more than 27 international papers in 2020 – believed to be the highest in Cambodia.

The staff and lecturers in the Faculty of Dentistry at UP have been busy publishing articles during the Covid-19 pandemic. Most prolific have been Assistant Prof Adith Venugopal, Assistant Prof Anand Marya, Prof Callum Durward, and Adjunct Assistant Prof Bethy Turton. Dr Bethy has been a lecturer, thesis supervisor and a leader of our community dentistry outreach programs for the past 5 years. She and her team (including a number of UP staff and dental students) have been undertaking important research recently on silver fluoride solutions, which are able to ARREST dental caries in the primary teeth. This research has important implications for the dental health of Cambodian children who on average have 9 decayed primary teeth at age 6. By arresting the decay, the teeth can be allowed to remain in the mouth, without causing pain or infection, and fall out naturally at the normal time. The procedure is simple and inexpensive – our UP dental students use this technique routinely for children in the schools they visit, and also in our UP Dental Clinic. Most of the field research has been led by Dr Horn Rithvitou, a UP graduate and junior lecturer, who hopes in the future to study a Masters of Dental Public Health abroad. He has been in charge of the fieldwork for several studies, including two clinical trials. The latest paper which has just been accepted for publication in the journal Clinical and Experimental Dental Research reported on a 12 month clinical trial of two silver fluoride solutions. The results are reported in the Abstract below. Caries arrest and lesion appearance using two different silver fluoride therapies on primary teeth with and without Potassium Iodide: 12-month results. Clinical and Experimental Dental Research (accepted for publication November 2020). Clinical and Experimental Dental Research. Turton, Bathsheba, Horn, Rithvitou, Durward, Callum; University of Puthisastra, Cambodia


Globally, has been an increase in the use of silver fluoride products to arrest carious lesions and a variety of products are available.


To examine differences in caries arrest and lesion colour of primary tooth carious lesions.


A four-armed, parallel-design cluster-randomised controlled trial which investigated four protocols for caries arrest at 6m and 12m. Children in Group 1 and Group 2 received Rivastar Silver Diammine Fluoride (SDF), and children in Group 3 and Group 4 received an aqueous silver fluoride solution (AgF). Children in Group 2 and Group 4 received an additional application of KI immediately after the fluoride. Differences in caries arrest and lesion appearance were examined at 6m and 12m using two level logistic regression modelling. Results: The arrest rate varied by group membership; group 1 and group 3 had higher arrest rates (77.3% and 75.3% respectively) than group 2 and group 4 (65.4% and 51.2% respectively). The use of KI was also associated with lower odds of arrest (12m OR 0.25; CI 0.19, 0.34) and higher odds of avoiding black discolouration (12m OR 6.08; 2.36, 15.67).


This study demonstrated that both AgF and SDF can effectively arrest carious lesions on primary teeth. The use of KI is associated with poorer caries control but better aesthetic outcomes.

WHAT’S UP ON CAMPUS -10 NOVEMBER, Human Rights day 2020

UP becomes a CPD provider recognized by Pharmacy Council of Cambodia

CPD (Continued professional development) is a critical aspect of health education – providing professionals with up-to-date knowledge and skills in rapidly changing health fields and therefore providing the best possible outcomes for patients.

UP is one of the first universities in Cambodia to be accredited for CPD.

UP’s Faculty of Pharmacy is officially recognized as a continuing professional development provider for pharmacists in Cambodia through a Memorandum of Understanding between the University of Puthisastra and the Pharmacy Council of Cambodia. The university is officially recognized by the Royal Government of Cambodia. On May 05, 2020, the University of Puthisastra also received full accreditation in accordance with the requirements of the national standard for 5 years from 2019 to 2023 by the Accreditation Committee of Cambodia. On July 31, 2020, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports also recognized the provision of electronic education services by the University of Puthisastra.

The University of Puthisastra has human resources, professors, trainers and facilitators who are competent and qualified in accordance with the conditions and principles of continuous professional development. To date, University has been investing in sophisticated lab equipment and facilities to train pharmacy students in research in line with national and international curricula. University of Puthisastra is preparing to improve its curriculum in line with international standards, create an eLearning Center, establish a Research Hub, and create research opportunities for pharmacy students to achieve high efficiency, establish a Learning Lounge and Career Corner to motivate pharmacy students to succeed. With this new collaboration, the University of Puthisastra is ready to provide continuing professional development education to pharmacists registered in the Kingdom of Cambodia.

Blood Donation Day at UP

UPs blood donation at UP has been a tremendous success with 80 donors. Among the 80 donors, 70 of them were students, 7 were UP staff and 3 were outside donors. This is one of the best records for the donation campaign at UP.

This blood donation day at UP is to raise awareness of the need for regular blood donations to ensure the quality, safety and availability of blood and blood products for patients in need.

“Back in my home country, the Netherlands, I was a regular blood donor for a few years. I decided to start donating blood as I realized that one day I might need a transfusion and that would only be possible because of the willingness of other people to donate their blood. So I felt blood donation was my way to be able to help the people who are in dire need. After my studies I moved to the USA and for many reasons was not able to set up a regular schedule for blood donation. In the last few years I was there I actually donated a lot of blood but it was all for scientific purposes for the research group I was working for so I could not contribute to the blood bank. Now, with regular blood drives setup at UP, as well as being registered officially, I feel I have come full circle and can start donating regularly again.” Said Dr. Richard Huijbregts, Head of Health Sciences, UP.

The UP Blood Donation campaign was officially supported by the National Blood Transfusion Center Cambodia. With our blood donors, we have done a great service to the nation. UP would like to thank all blood donors as this contribution will help sustain the blood stock to keep up with the continuous demand for blood by many patients in need. UP is looking forward to making Blood Donation a regular event at UP.

Congratulations to 3 UP students winning awards from CHPAA

CHPAA (Cambodian Health Professionals Association of America) offers 6 awards to recognize students for their academic achievements, volunteerism and their commitment to serve poor people. 3 UP students won awards and we would like to congratulate them on their hard work for this great achievement. The three students are:

Pirou Lay, a fourth-year UP pharmacy student. He’s now a member of IPSF APRO Editorial & Translation Subcommittee for 2020-21. He was an alumnus of Asian Science Camp in 2019 and also leader of Pharmacy Career Club at UP and a member in Leadership Community Toastmasters. He has volunteered with different non-profit charitable organizations such as Project Lokun, Khmer Sight Foundation, and Project Sa’bai. His career goal into teaching science at medical school and become a biomedical scientist. “Teaching is sharing, for the next generation deserve more than this” said Pirou.

Solynet Sao is an 8th-year UP medical student pursuing a dual master’s program for Clinical Psychology and Counseling at Royal University of Phnom Penh. She was a former president of Edniche Toastmasters Club, a nonprofit international educational organization that teaches public speaking and leadership skills. She has volunteered with International Medical Relief for Cambodia, Project Helping Hand, SEALNet Project Vietnam and including one of CHPAA Missions. She wants to become a psychiatrist focusing on counseling and psychotherapy in addition to medical treatment.

Tara, a fourth-year UP medical student. In his medical journey as a student, he has volunteered on numerous overseas projects. He was a UPPC clinic head of project lokun. In addition, he has also volunteered in other projects such as project Sa’ bai, Goble Health Outreach (U.S), One Good Turn (U.S) medical team and including CHPAA mission. He served as a translator and assisted the volunteered doctor. His career goal is to work toward becoming a resident doctor in the U.S and Canada. Moreover, he hopes that he would bring back the experience and skill he has to improve the health care system and the patient-doctor relationship toward an advanced level.

UP is committed to improving healthcare in Cambodia and extends warmest congratulations to these UP Students for their future endeavors!


The Dental Clinic at the University of Puthisastra on Street 180 offers high quality orthodontic treatment at prices lower than most other clinics.

Our three specialist orthodontists can provide a free assessment and discuss treatment options with you before you decide.

Please call the UP Dental Clinic receptionist on 012 414 563/098 414 563 to make an appointment.

UP students prepare for Clerkship Orientation at CFF

Clerkship is an effective measure of improving the pharmacy students’ understanding of and attitudes toward pharmaceutical care. Before the start of clerkship, there is always a welcome meeting from the clerkship placement to guide the students to understand the rules and activities during the clerkship and in 2020 to understand Covid-19 pandemic effects. For 2020, UPs Faculty of Pharmacy has sent students to do clerkship in different places.

One of them is Consumer Protection Competition and Fraud Repression Directorate-General (CFF). CFF organized a welcome meeting to give a warm welcome to pharmacy students with participation from the Deputy Director General, the Director of the Laboratory Department and the trainers of the Laboratory Department. This program is very important for pharmacy students to prepare for their upcoming clerkship.


Our UP team of dental students and dentists has been working together for the past 4 years with One-2-One Cambodia, the Cambodian Dental Association and other partners (including the Oral Health Office of the MOH and School Health Department of MOEYS) in implementing the Healthy Kids Cambodia dental program in primary schools within Phnom Penh and several provinces.

The World Dental Federation (FDI) has recently recognized our work with the “FDI Smile award”. We are very honored to be part of this project and would like to acknowledge that UP staff and students have played an important role in the development and implementation of the Healthy Kids project, including conducting important research to demonstrate its success. This international award confirms that we in Cambodia are following best practice in the prevention of dental caries among the children we are working with. Dr Sourn Monika, President of Cambodian Dental Association, received the award by Video call last week.

Thank you to our past and present dental students of UP for your hard work and dedication to children’s oral health, which has made this award possible.

UP staff take part in customer service training

UP considers that students are at the heart of everything we do so on Saturday, 7th November 2020, 20 UP staff members from a variety of departments, who frequently answer questions and queries from students, parents and UP stakeholders, took part in a session of customer service training and facilitation. The training was provided by Ms. Tuy Manina and Ms. Nichola Heaton from the Department of English Excellence & Employability in association with the Human Resources (HR) Department.

The purpose of the training was for attendees from the different teams within UP to identify ways to enhance their customer skills and become even more effective across all of our customer facing departments. The attendees explored some of the following areas through discussions, as well as sharing their own personal experiences, for example, when they had received customer service that was unhelpful.

Questions and themes that were discussed and worked on, included:

  1. What makes good customer service?
  2. What barriers do we encounter when it comes to offering great customer service?
  3. What would help in terms of improving things and making these areas of the job easier?
  4. What are the consequences of bad customer service?
  5. How to work successfully with difficult or demanding customers.

An important part of the training centered on managing customer expectations, following up on queries and requests for help, and developing communication skills so that colleagues are better equipped when a customer is feeling confused, angry or upset about something. We have got some great feedback from the participants and this can really help us to improve on collaboration across departments and ensure our overall customer service skills are high quality. Manina and Nichola from the English department wish to thank all those who attended. They really appreciate colleagues taking the time to join them a Saturday afternoon. They are looking forward to providing this training and facilitation again in 2021!


UP has received a large donation of Plaque Disclosing Tablets from Dr Hak Sithan, Deputy Director of the Department of Preventive Medicine at the MOH. Dr Sithan is also one of our lecturers in Community Dentistry, and Cross Infection Control. The plaque disclosing tablets are very useful when giving dental health education to patients in the clinic, as they stain the plaque a pink or purple colour. Patients can then see the plaque clearly, and can learn how to remove it with the toothbrush. Normally these tablets are difficult to find in Cambodia, so we are very grateful to Dr Sithan for this valuable donation.

Dr Chea Sin, Dean of Pharmacy, attended the International Dean’s Course Southeast Asia Part II

A major aim of UP is to improve the skills of our leaders to an international level – providing international expertise to UP and to Cambodia. The International Dean’s Course Southeast Asia was hosted and sponsored by The German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), he German Rectors’ Conference (HRK), the Osnabrück University of Applied Sciences and the Centre for Higher Education (CHE). This intensive training course is part of the DIES programme (Dialogue on Innovative Higher Education Strategies) which is coordinated by DAAD and HRK and which aims at strengthening higher education management structures in developing countries.

This course was originally planned into three stages as follows:
Part I: ten days seminar in Osnabrück and Berlin, Germany (June 15th to 26th, 2020)
Part II: three days seminar in Hanoi, Vietnam (October 26th to 28th, 2020)
Part III: four days seminar in Yogyakarta, Indonesia (February 1st to 4th, 2021)

Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 pandemic, the course was changed to online course, in which the first part was held on June 15-26, 2020, the second part was held on October 26-30, 2020, and the third part will be held in February 2021. This part II courses equipped deans from Southeast Asia with knowledge, skills, and experiences on university governance, how university responds to pandemic,
university change management and rankings, and entrepreneurial universities.

UP Medicine Faculty presents The importance of publications in international medical journals

The Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Prof. Sandro Vento, with the assistance of the Assistant Dean for Academic Affairs, Dr. Thao Titya, in the last two weeks delivered lectures (initially both in classroom and online, subsequently online only) to all the MD year 4-8 students (involved in hospital clerkships or internships) outlining the importance of publications in international peer-reviewed medical journals with impact factor for institutions (universities and hospitals) and individuals (doctors and students).

After explaining how journals are ranked, he also illustrated an example of a published case report and explained how interesting cases can be identified and reported. The Faculty of Medicine hopes that the students, in collaboration with their mentors in the various training hospitals, will be motivated to identify interesting patient cases that can be submitted to international medical journals for possible publication. By doing so, MD students will not only contribute to raise the profile of both the University and the Hospitals but will also reflect on the diagnosis and management of difficult clinical cases.


UP is conducting a postgraduate Diploma in Dental Implantology for some of Cambodia’s top dentists, and is looking for patients who need implants. The cost of a high quality implant is up to 75% lower than in some private clinics (as little as $500).

For a free consultation, please call Dr. Pisal Khom on 089 565 664/098 956 289 for an appointment at the UP Dental Clinic, Street 180, Phnom Penh.

Dr Chea Sin, Dean of Pharmacy, Ouk Soksereivotanak, Director of Department of Laboratory Sciences, joined the 5th ASEAN Association Schools of Medical Technology (AASMT) Congress 2020

Beginning in 2013, the board of AASMT put a great deal of efforts to establish the strategic partnerships with Medical Technology schools among ASEAN countries to exchange and share ideas, experiences and best practices of the teaching and learning approaches to achieve ASEAN MT competencies. These efforts led to establishing the AASMT international conference/congress. On November 5th/6th 2020, Dr Chea Sin, Dean of Pharmacy and Ouk Soksereivotanak, Director of Department of Laboratory Sciences represented Cambodia at the 5th ASEAN Association Schools of Medical Technology (AASMT) Congress 2020, hosted by University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Vietnam. The congress focused on research network for medical technology, quality management system, and harmonized curriculum for medical technology.