Sri Lanka College of Dermatologists (SLCD) was originally started as Sri Lanka Association of Dermatologists (SLAD). It was founded in 1985 with a membership of 13. Under the stewardship of set of dedicated professionals the SLAD accelerated its forward march to achieve status of a College in 2005. From its humble beginnings it has gradually evolved to a professional body with 130 members.
Late Drs. W.D.H. Perera and D.N. Atukorale pioneered the setting up of SLAD. Its founder president Dr. Lakshman Ranasinghe is still actively engaged in the activities of the college. Vision of the founders was focused mainly on enhancing knowledge, promoting research and strengthening International links in Dermatology.
In 1995 SLAD was successful in establishing a separate Board of Study for Dermatology at The Post Graduate Institute of Medicine (PGIM), University of Colombo, Sri Lanka. This paved the way to train a sufficient number of Dermatologists to serve the country.
In addition to annual academic sessions other academic activities including lectures, workshops, updates and regional meetings organized by SLCD has contributed towards the continuous education of the membership. Sri Lanka Journal of Dermatology is the official publication of SLCD.
SLCD encourages research which is a compulsory component in the postgraduate training. Recently it acquired equipments to study skin physiology. Every year at the annual sessions of SLCD a gold medal is awarded to the best research project. International links of SLAD has started with its inaugural academic sessions in 1986.It was a joint meeting with German Dermatological Society (GDS) with Prof C. Orfanos from Germany as the chief guest. Subsequently several such meetings with delegations from Germany were held in 1998, 2002, 2005, 2012 and 2015. In 2007 a delegation from SLCD was invited to deliver lectures at the GDS sessions. Every year a consultant dermatologist from Germany comes to Sri Lanka to teach Sri Lankan postgraduate trainees. GDS has donated books and equipments that are very useful to SLCD members.
Visit of the Dowling Club of U.K. in 1996 was another landmark event that added colour to the history of SLCD.
In 2006 a joint meeting of the SLCD and the Singaporean Dermatological Society was held in Colombo. Each year two trainees from Sri Lanka receive the sponsorships to attend the annual sessions of the Singaporean Dermatological society.
SLCD is a member of International League of Dermatological Societies (ILDS). Members of the SLCD attend the meetings of World Congress of Dermatology, American Academy of Dermatology and International Society of dermatology. The SLCD has continued to have an active interaction with the above societies which paved the way for young Dermatologists to be awarded scholarships to attend the conferences organized by those societies.
SLCD is a founder member of South Asian Regional Association of Dermatologists (SARAD). Since the inception of SARAD, SLCD has played a significant role in strengthening regional links in Dermatology. South Asian Regional Conference in Dermatology (SARCD) was hosted by SLCD in 2003 and 2013. Both these events were highly successful.
Whenever SLCD hosts an international meeting a special interest is taken to include Tropical Dermatology which provides learning opportunities to all participants. Symposia on leprosy, leishmaniasis and mycoses are examples. Experts from the related fields such as Microbiology, Mycology and Parasitology also function as resource persons during these events. Most meetings are spread over a few days with one day dedicated to a clinical session where the participants are able to see a vast array of skin diseases relevant to tropics. Cultural events and programmes for accompanying persons too have become popular. Ample opportunities are provided to enjoy the scenic beauty of Sri Lanka.
With its growing membership SLCD is looking forward to achieve greater heights in Academic Dermatology. The forthcoming conference in Tropical dermatology will undoubtedly be a leap forward in this direction.