President of the Japanese Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism
Chief Professor of the Department of Upper Gastrointestinal Surgery, Kitasato University School of Medicine
Professor HIKI Naoki
My name is HIKI Naoki, and I have been appointed as the President of the Japanese Society of Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (JSPEN). I am extremely humbled to have been requested to serve in this important position and will do my utmost to fulfill my mission.
I attended the 6th Annual Meeting of Japanese Society for Research on Parenteral/Enteral Nutrition organized by Dr. OGOSHI Shohei for the first time in 1991, and was strongly impressed by the excellent discussions regarding clinical nutrition at this meeting. I was only in my residency at that time and never imagined that I would be involved in the management of this Society with its storied history and tradition.
In addition to the major social problem of the COVID-19 pandemic, another great tidal wave struck our Society last year. This was resignation for health reasons of the former President of this Society. When the Society was greatly shaken by this wave, I was reminded of the lyrics of “FUKUZAWA Yukichi is Here to Stay”. The lyrics describe how FUKUZAWA Yukichi was the only person teaching as usual at Shiba Shinsenza in the bustling city of Oedo (present day Tokyo), eight kilometers away from Ueno, when the Imperial Army started their attack in the mountains of Ueno. It is at times like this that I strongly felt the need to make this Society a place where I could calm my mind and appreciate the precious learning process that I originally felt 30 years ago at the Japanese Society for Research on Parenteral/Enteral Nutrition.
I have worked as a gastroenterological surgeon at the Cancer Institute Hospital for 15 years and have been involved in the treatment of the leading cases of cancer surgery in Japan. What I have learned during this time is that the problems we need to solve can only be discovered in a patient’s hospital room. That is to say that the solutions to clinical questions are always found at the bedside. The Japanese Society for Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism (JSPEN), which has many excellent clinicians as members, is well-equipped to solve these clinical questions. It would be a shame to let these skills disappear after just one generation, and I believe that the establishment of an educational system to nurture young clinicians with these abilities is now required by our Society.
I was involved in the incorporation of the Society in November 2013, as a director and later as an auditor, allowing me to take a step back to observe the activities of the Society from a different perspective and calmly study the situation, from which emerged my desire to reform our Society in a manner incorporating this education. We certainly have a lot of work to do. As president, I cannot use the fact that I am a beginner as an excuse not to do my job fully. I must work at full speed and energy with all the directors, auditors, delegates, and members to provide a place of learning for the more than 20,000 members of our Society. Thank you very much for your continued support and guidance.