From the IRA Secretary’s Desk

Vinod Ravindran MD, MRCP (UK), MSc-Rheumatology (King’s College, London, UK), CCT-Rheumatology (UK), MRCP-Rheumatology (UK), FRCP (Edin)
Director, Centre for Rheumatology, Calicut, Kerala

Dear Colleagues,

We are pleased that our members could organised several activities to celebrate and support the month of April 2024 as Rheumatology Awareness Month and made it a resounding success.  This year’s primary focus was to make all stakeholders aware of; what rheumatology is, who is a rheumatologist, what are the common rheumatic & autoimmune diseases and what are the benefits of early intervention.

The IRA strives to support rapid progress in all areas of rheumatology including clinical care and research. In the March and May 2024 meetings of the IRA Executive Committee, 26 new life memberships were approved, and we welcome these new members.

A limited number of travel grants is available for rheumatology trainees and IRA members below 40 years of age who have their abstracts accepted at conferences abroad. This FY so far, we have approved 9 travel grants; 5 in the former and 4 in the latter categories (3 for APLAR and 6 for EULAR congresses).

On May 12th, the IRA Executive Committee undertook a detailed visit to the IRA House situated in New Delhi. It was decided to undertake the necessary work to develop the house as an IRA museum with meeting and storage facilities. I shall keep you posted on further developments.

Revamping of the IRA website is nearing completion. I shall inform you once it is ready. The first of the IRA webinar series “IRA eConnect 2024-2025” held on 7th March 2024 was attended by over 500 delegates! This month on the 19th, Prof Ernest Choy discussed “Newer insights into cardiovascular risk in RA” which was followed by a lively questions and answers session.

I am pleased to inform you that I have been nominated to represent India by the IRA in the newly formed APLAR SIG on “Women’s Health & Reproductive Issues in RMDs” as its permanent member and co-convener. I request your input to help us to contribute to this assignment effectively.

IRA members can avail of a special 15% discount off registration for APLAR Congress 2024 to be held in Singapore using code IRA15.

As a member of the IRA, you can apply for funding for your research. Please visit GRANTS ( for more details and to apply. To propagate the awareness of rheumatic diseases among UGs and postgraduate trainees, IRA’s support is available for our members who wish to organize IRA UG-PG Rheumatology CME in teaching institutions.

As a stakeholder, your views are very important. Please mail me your suggestions and queries at

Best wishes  

Prof. Vinod Ravindran MD, CCT-Rheumatology (UK), FRCP
Secretary, IRA

Centre for Rheumatology
On Chevarambalam- Paropady Road
Calicut, Kerala