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TalentCorp Semester Break Programme 2018 SnapShot

A snapshot of the burgeoning healthcare ecosystems in Malaysia, TalentCorp Semester Break Programme (Healthcare) 2018.
By Wai Ying Yvonne Tang, on March 2018

The opinions in the article below is the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the views of MBIOS or any of the parties mentioned. Please email MBIOS ( should any discrepancies be found.

From medical tourism, medical centre expansions to the actively growing pharmaceutical industry in Malaysia, students and graduates acquire glimpses of our healthcare related ecosystems in Malaysia, thanks to the first-of-its-kind healthcare themed TalentCorp Semester Break Programme that was organised last February at the Sunway Medical Centre, Petaling Jaya.

TalentCorp and their dynamic team have put together a very organised and well sourced day for students and graduate in healthcare related fields. Attendees came from a variety of related backgrounds including biomedical sciences, biotechnology, medical biotechnology, chemistry, medicine, chemical engineering and many more.

The insightful talks from representatives of the Medical Health Tourism Council, Sunway Medical Centre and GlaxoSmith Kline Malaysia are summarised below.

Malaysian Healthcare Travel Council (MHTC)
Speaker: Dr. Israfil Merican

In an interactive session, Dr Israfil gave a comprehensive overview of the ecosystem of healthcare in Malaysia and introduced MHTC as a formal entity within the Ministry of Health Malaysia (MOH). He then introduced us all to the many accolades of MHTC, which places Malaysia on the international stage as a preferred destination for World Class Healthcare Services. As a country director, his role includes facilitating inter- country collaborations between public and private sectors to allow Malaysia and its stakeholders (Hospitals, Medical Centre, Medical Spas, Airports, etc) to provide international travellers seeking treatments abroad with a seamless experience upon arrival, throughout the treatment procedure and until the return of the patient to their homeland.

Accordingly, he then mentioned our very own Institute Jantung Negara (IJN) that has garnered multiple awards over the years and is recognised internationally as a world- class cardiac and thoracic institute. He included several examples of pioneering biotech inventions from Malaysia that has disrupted the healthcare industries. An example of strategic partnership with MHTC is the Stethee: a world’s first AI based stethoscope that was innovated for precise monitoring and detection of lung diseases coupled to a smart device, to allow users to build a biometric signature of their heart and lung functions.

Dr Israfil ended the talk with questions from the audience. He also gently urged all Malaysians to be mini ‘ambassadors’ for Malaysia, especially to help grow our very own homegrown medical tourism specialty here.

Official website:

Sunway Medical Centre

Speakers: Dr Khoo Chow Huat, Dr. Syed Abdullah Al-Haddad, Jamuna Jairaman

Dr Khoo started by talking about the exciting expansion of Sunway Medical Centres in Malaysia. The number of patient beds has been increased and a few approved medical centres are being built throughout Malaysia that includes one at Sunway Velocity and another in Penang. He also introduced the new and exciting international biomedical collaboration between the University of Cambridge, Papworth Hospital NHS Foundation Trust and Sunway Medical Centre, which culminated in the establishment of the Clinical Research Centre at Bandar Sunway. This partnership will allow local researchers, consultants and nurses to work alongside cutting-edge researchers at Cambridge to tackle cardiothoracic diseases. ( across-borders-and-disciplinary-boundaries).

Then, Dr. Syed left a lasting impression by starting his talk with a short clip of a brain surgery. He continued his talk by sharing his experiences (failures as well as glories) of all his achievements today. Indeed it was an eye-opening session as he shared how he overcame hurdles to become a world-renowned brain surgeon. He also discussed his decision to return to Malaysia after spending over 20 years abroad.

Jamuna changed the mood of the talk by enthusiastically sharing her career path at the Sunway Medical Centre Laboratory for the past 17 years. Her talk was enlightening as it is rare to hear a biomedical science-based professional speak about her career path, especially in Malaysia. She carefully illustrated her passions, progression, expanding responsibilities and introduced us to the DOPE Bird 4 Personality types test in an engaging manner. It was indeed inspiring to hear that she was part of the team that brought quality awards to Sunway Medical Centre by sheer persistence and diligence. As a young researcher, I found resonance when she quoted Phil McGraw “Sometimes you make the right decision, sometimes you make the decision right.”


Official website:

GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) Malaysia
Speakers: Basker Maniam, Pramila Pram Kumar, Najihah and Priscilla

The last session was an interactive and enjoyable session. Basker briefed us on the visions and missions of GSK that is science-led to bring quality healthcare medicines, vaccines and products to consumers worldwide. He also introduced us all to a newly recruited personnel (Najihah) and an intern (Priscilla) from the communications department. Then he opened the floor to questions. Questions ranged from the inclusive and open work culture at GSK, the application process for the GSK Future Leaders program, internships at GSK, job application process and also mentioned the current expansion of GSK manufacturing plant at Ulu Kelang. Attendees were actively asking questions and they stayed back to interact with us all at the end. It was very informative as we all got a glimpse of the life at GSK through speaking with their personnel and also of their upcoming GSK Future Leaders Program that trains and prepares graduates to work at GSK from Day 1.


The Future Leaders Program (GSK Malaysia) is now open for applications online for these areas (Pharmaceuticals, GMS Engineering, GMS quality, consumer healthcare).

After the talks, attendees were shown around the Sunway Medical Centre. Attendees were impressed with the technologically advanced Nuclear Medicine Centre and the room suites available. All in all, it was an enjoyable yet enlightening day, organised successfully by TalentCorp. Thanks to all the speakers for taking their time to share invaluable industrial insights with attendees. We hope that such exposures will continue to benefit more bioscience and healthcare related students and graduates in the future.

Photographs (courtesy of TalentCorp) and the event was also covered here: ​ 

We would love to appraise TalentCorp once more for their efforts in bridging the gap between students and the local healthcare industry. For more Talentcorp related events, please visit:

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