The Beginning: The Philippine Lipid and Atherosclerosis Society started as the Philippine Lipid Society, and was initiated by a handful of doctors after a workshop in Hongkong on Lipidology with the lipidology faculty from the University of San Francisco, California, sponsored by Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS). The Philippine Lipid Society (PLS) was formally established in 1993 for the purpose of updating everyone on the latest developments in lipidology and at the same time stimulating research in this field locally with the mission: To prevent and control lipid disorders in the Philippines. Dr. Eugenio Jose Ramos, who was then the medical director of BMS and part of the cardiology and endocrinology group who attended the HK training, assigned Ms Lourdes D. Magno, product manager of BMS, to sit in the PLS Board as corporate partner.

The PLS was founded by: Dr. Tommy Ty-Willing, Dr. Rody G. Sy, Dr. Mary Ann Lim-Abrahan, Dr. Dante D. Morales, Dr. Ruby Go, Dr. Esperanza I. Cabral, Dr Nelson S. Abelardo, Dr. Ricardo Fernando, Dr. Lina Lantion-Ang, Dr .Augusto Litonjua, and Mr. James Dio. The Society organized and held its first convention on February 3-4, 1995 at the Westin Philippine Plaza Hotel. The first annual meeting in conjunction with the Philippine Society of Hypertension (PSH) was held during in February 1996, 1998 to year 2000. Since year 2002, the joint meetings with the PSH have been the tradition.

In February 1997, the PLS hosted its first international congress together with the Asian Pacific Society of Atherosclerosis and Vascular Diseases (APSAVD) in Cebu. Together with the PSH, the PLS once again hosted the APSAVD Congress for year 2002 in Cebu and for 2018 in Iloilo.

In year 2000, the PLS supported the World Congress of Cardiac Rehabilitation by dovetailing its annual convention into it.

Trainings, Workshops and Research: During its early years, the PLS held Lipid Training Workshops in various parts of the country, partnering with Bristol Myers Squibb. The PLS also sponsored a reliability study on lipid testing in six Metro Manila Laboratories, the results of which were presented in the organization’s first convention.

In 1998-99, the PLS, PSH and Philippine Diabetes Association (PDA) collaborated with the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI) in performing the Fifth National Nutrition Survey. This was the first truly randomized national survey on cardiovascular risk factors with measurements of glucose and lipid parameters. The PLS initiated the first genetic investigation on Filipino Familial Hypercholesterolemia patients at the UP National Institute of Health (UP-NIH) Human Genetics Laboratory.

Partnering with the Corporate Industry: From the very start, the pharmaceutical industry has always been very supportive, starting out with six corporate members – Boehringer Manheim, Bristol Myers Squibb, Farmitalia Carlo Erba/Warner Lambert/Parke Davis, Inc., Laboratories Fournier, Merck Sharp & Dohme. With many mergers in the international scene and the active presence of national companies, the partnership became a collaboration, expanding to ten (10) corporate members namely Bayer, Bristol Myers Squibb, Fournier Laboratories, Merck, Merck Sharp & Dohme, Natrapharm, Novartis, Pfizer, Roche and Sanofi-Synthelabo.

Expansion and Growth Expansion and Growth In the year 2006, the Philippine Lipid Society modified its original name by including the word “ATHEROSCLEROSIS”. This terminology would also encompass risk factors for cardiovascular diseases beyond lipid disorders, such as hypertension and diabetes. As filed and approved by the Securities and Exchange Commission, the PLS officially changed its name to the Philippine Lipid and Atherosclerosis Society (PLAS). The announcement of the change in name was made during the 11th joint annual convention on February 9, 2006.

The Officers and Members of the Board of Directors are: the President, the Vice-President, the Secretary, the Treasurer and the Auditor. They are elected by the elected Board of Directors from among themselves. The Board started out with the position of a 2nd Vice-President appointed by the Board from among the corporate members of the pharmaceutical companies. In year 2008, however, the position was dissolved during the presidency of Dr. Nelson Abelardo. The term of office of the Board of Directors started with one year, and was later extended to two years.

International Participation and Network PLS now PLAS is officially recognized as a member of International Atherosclerosis Society (IAS). Members of the PLAS are invited to be members of the Asian Pacific Society of Atherosclerosis and Vascular Disease (APSAVD).

PLAS today: The Philippine Lipid and Atherosclerosis Society (PLAS) has built a culture that values life – the respect and the care for life – above all. Integrity, partnership, innovation, dedication, and service are values the society believes in and lives by, as it pursues its mission to prevent and control lipid and atherosclerosis disorders in the Philippines.