ISTH Advanced Course in Haemostasis and Thrombosis

Belgrade, Serbia, November 7-9, 2012

 

ORGANIZATION

ISTH Advanced Course in Haemostasis and Thrombosis was held in Belgrade, November 7-9, 2012.

The course was organized by the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis in collaboration with the World Federation of Hemophilia and the Serbian Society of Haemostasis and Thrombosis.

Chairs of the course: Danijela Miković, Flora Peyvandi, Frits. R. Rosendaal.

Official language of the meeting was English.

The meeting venue: Best Western Hotel M (Address: Bulevar oslobodjenja 56a, 11000 Belgrade, Serbia, Web: www.hotel-m.com). Different categories of accommodation were available. Special rates had been provided for the meeting participants.

 

AIMS

1.       To create programme focused on the most recent developments in pathophysiology, diagnosis and clinical management of platelet disorders, haemorrhagic syndromes and thrombotic disorders and their impact on individual patients

2.       To design the programme in the form of a course including: a) invited lectures given by international and local speakers and, b) interactive sessions with  presentations of case and research reports presented by young local participants followed by free discussion

3.       To organize regional meeting which would involve approximately 100 elected young participants from South-East and Central European countries

4.       To provide industry support without symposia and exhibition and also without influence on programme and choice of participants.

 

PROGRAMME

Programme was divided in three main sessions:

Session 1 – Platelets

Session 2 – Coagulation, Haemorrhage

Session 3 – Coagulation, Thrombosis.

Within each session one part was dedicated to the invited lectures given by invited speakers, followed by free discussions. Overall, 12 invited lectures were presented by: Michaeil Berndt (Dublin), Tilman Hackeng (Maastricht), Flora Peyvandi (Milan), Jeroeen Eikenboom (Leiden), Danijela Mikovic (Belgrade), Frits R. Rosendaal (Leiden), Trevor Baglin (Cambridge) and Predrag Miljic (Belgrade).

Interactive sessions were also a part of each main session: 8 case reports were given by Serbian young participants and four case reports by invited speakers. An interactive session with four research presentations given by Serbian young participants took place. All interactive sessions included free discussions. Time provided for each presentation was 30 minutes, including 10 minutes for presenters and 20 minutes for free discussion.

Participation in the ISTH Advanced Course in Haemostasis and Thrombosis has been accredited by the decree issued by the Health Council of the Republic of Serbia (А-1-2126/12): 14 credit points for speakers and 7 credit points for participants.

Social programme consisted of:

-        Opening ceremony with welcome addresses by chairs of the meeting and Prof. Radoje Colovic, President of the Serbian Medical Society, followed by welcome reception

-        Farewell dinner

-        Course Evaluation and Farewell

 

PARTICIPANTS

Total of 103 participants took part at the ISTH Advanced Course in Haemostasis and Thrombosis, Belgrade 2012.

Participants were medical professionals from South East and Central European countries as well as Russia: Serbia - 64, Russia – 9, Macedonia – 9, Romania - 6, Bosnia and Herzegovina - 5, Montenegro - 2, Slovenia - 2, Slovakia -2, Greece -1, Hungary – 1, Bulgaria - 1 and Turkey – 1.

Participants’ age range distribution was the following: 21-30 yrs (29 participants), 31-40 yrs (46 participants), 41-50 (18 participants) and 50-60 (10 participants).

Among participants there were trainees and junior specialists in: Internal Medicine - 11, Internal Medicine, Haematology - 15, Internal Medicine, Cardiology – 4, Pediatrics – 19, Transfusion Medicine - 32,  Anaestesiology – 7, Biochemistry – 10, Neurology – 2, Oncology – 1, Surgery –1, Molecular Biology – 1.

 

Colleagues up to 35 years applied with short CV and motivation letter for competitive grants to support participation at the meeting. After careful selection made by Prof. Frits R. Rosendaal, assisted by
Dr Danijela Mikovic, the choice was made and 53 participants had been awarded.

Thanks to initiative of the ISTH, registration for the Belgrade Course included complimentary 2013 Reach the World Membership in the ISTH, which implies:

-        Complimentary subscription to the online version of the Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis

-        Complimentary copies of the ISTH e-Newsletter

-        Opportunity to vote on Society matters and serve on SSC subcommittees and working groups

-        Opportunity to receive travel grants to attend ISTH Congresses and SSC Meetings

-        Access to educational materials and e-learning modules

-        Networking with colleagues around the world via the online membership directory

Following December 31, 2013 remaining a member of the ISTH for only $35 per year is optional.

 

DESCRIPTION OF THE ORGANISATIONAL ACTIVITIES

Organization ISTH Advanced Course in Haemasis and Thrombosis in Belgrade was initiated by Prof. Flora Peyvandi as a result of previous successful collaboration between Milan and Belgrade Haemostasis and Thrombosis Centres (collaboration in scientific in projects, organization of scientific meetings in Belgrade in 2007 and 2009).

The initial meeting with the participation of Prof Flora Peyvandi, Dr Danijela Mikovic and Prof. Frits R. Rosendaal was held in November 2011 in Milan. At the meeting date and place of the ISTH course, target audience and age of participant, structure and draft version the programme as well as budgeting principles were established.

With the support of Mr. Cary Clark, Program and Technology Manager of the International Society on Thrombosis and Haemostasis, contact with invited speakers was made, their participation was confirmed and presentation topics were defined.

Application to the ISTH Education Committee was submitted and our proposal together with preliminary programme and budget were approved in January 2012.

The following organizational step was to find and delegate participants who are trainees and junior specialists in Haematology, Transfusion Medicine, Vascular Medicine, Biochemistry and other medical specialties engaged in  problems of thrombosis and haemostasis and PhDs wishing to acquire biochemical and clinical knowledge in the field of haemorrhagic and thrombotic disorders. In Serbia, selection of participants was made through personal communication with the most relevant institutions, officials and colleagues involved in the field of haemostasis and thrombosis by dr Danijela Mikovic. Contacts with colleagues within the region of South East and Central Europe where achieved thanks to previous cooperation within Danibian League against Thrombosis and Haemostasis, World Federeation of Haemophilia and European Haemophilia Consortium. Once again, Mr. Cary Clark assisted considerably by distribution of information to ISTH members in the region and in Russia.

CME accreditation was obtained by official Serbian authorities. Accreditation process required submission of necessary documents:

-        Filled in CME accreditation application, signed and sealed by the CE organizer.

-        Summary of the education programme

-        Timetable, topics and list of lecturers

-        Detailed lecturers’ CVs in the official form provided by the Serbian Health Council

-        Decision made by Education Committee of the International Society of Thrombosis and Haemostas that the  Programme of the „Advanced Course in Haemostasis and Thrombosis“ Belgrade November 7-9, 2012 has been approved

-        Intelectual property certificate.

ISTH Advanced Course in Haemostasis and Thrombosis has been accredited by the decree issued by the Health Council of the Republic of Serbia (А-1-2126/12).

The meeting was announced by personal communication, electronic mailing information and through the official website of the meeting at the website of the Serbian Society of Haemostasis and Thrombosis (www.uhts.or.rs).  Meeting website consisted of following sections: About Meeting, Programme, CME Accreditation, Grants, Social Events Registration, Accommodation, Online Registration/Accommodation, General Information, Sponsoring, About Belgrade and Contact. It enabled on-line registration and continuous communication with participants via official webmail. The website communication was efficient at all times and it enabled continuous and timely follow up of registration process. All participants’ requests and questions were dealt with promptly.

According to the previous agreement financial support was to be provided by ISTH, WFH and Serbian Society of Haemostasis and Thrombosis.

Since funding for grants for participation of young doctors should have been obtained, it was necessary to provide the required means through contacts with pharmaceutical companies as potential sponsors. Previously, the decision was made to try to engage pharmaceutical companies as sponsors without symposia and exhibition during the meeting, which in itself was demanding and serious task.

The registration fee of 12 000 RSD (approximately 100 €) covered the access to scientific sessions, printed material, certificate of attendance, welcome reception, meals, refreshments during the meeting and farewell dinner.

 

PRINTED AND EDUCATIONAL MATERIAL

As a part of meeting organization the following items were printed:

-          Official posters of the meeting

-          Poster with the list of sponsors

-          Branded printed material for the meeting venue

-          Invitation for the opening ceremony

-          Registration material (badges, notebooks, farewell dinner invitations, certificates of attendance, evaluation questionnaires)

-          Programme and Abstract book

Educational material for participants consisted of:

-          Programme and Abstract book

-          With the agreement of all speakers except one invited presentations in pdf format were distributed to all interested participants.

-          As proposed by ISTH all invited lectures were videotaped and sent to ISTH in order to be presented on the official ISTH website.

 

ANALYIS OF THE EVALUATION

Detailed evaluation forms, consisted of sections related to participants characteristics (profession, age, country). Course organization and programme were distributed to all participants. Sixty-two participants filled in the forms.

Most participants were appealed by the topics and invitation to attend the meeting.

Over half of participants were informed about the meeting in direct communitarians and electronic mailing.

Overall average mark of the Course organization and programme is 4.59.

Organization and programme of the Course were highly rated from 4,48 for registration of participants to 4,79  for the quality and up to date level of the lectures, average  4,68.

All invited lectures were highly rated, with marks ranging from 4,20 to 4,82, average 4,61.

Interactive sessions were ranked with marks from 4,03 to 4,38, average 4,24.

 

PERSONAL EVALUATION

According my cochairs who expressed their impressions right after the meeting and my personal opinion we succeeded to achieve several goals we anticipated at the beginning.  

We achieved our main goal which was to gather together 103 young participants involved in haemostasis and thrombosis field from the countries of the South-East and Central European regions and Russia.

On the other hand, I am grateful for having been enabled to engage highly distinguished invited speakers who presented exceptional and valuable lectures, who transferred their knowledge and experience to younger colleagues. Some participants expressed their gratitude for having been able to attend this meeting which in their opinion was so far the best one they have ever attended.

This meeting was an excellent opportunity for young Serbian doctors to present their achievements in forms of case and research presentations. At the same time they had an extraordinary opportunity to get precious comments and recommendations for their future work from invited speakers.

Each session was followed by lively and constructive discussions which contributed to the overall atmosphere of the meeting which was at the same time highly professional and relaxed, and marked with close and spontaneous interaction between speakers and participants. Invited speakers were also active and inspiring moderators of discussions with participants during the entire course. It stimulated participants to freely communicate with the experts which encouraged very active exchange of opinions, especially following case reports presentations given by invited speakers.

However, taking into consideration somewhat lower grades of interactive sessions, we could consider either presentation of status in haemostasis field in the country which organizes the course or to try to get representative case reports from the whole region which might improve the quality of the interactive sessions.

Most suggestions from participant were that it would be useful for to get a stick or CD with presentations as a part of educational material

We succeed in providing industry support without symposia and exhibition and also without their influence on programme and choice of participants.

One of the greatest achievements of the meeting in my opinion is that a regional network of young professionals in haemostasis and thrombosis field has been established. That liaison will certainly show its effects in future through collaboration, mutual projects etc.

I would also like to point out that ISTH initiative and generous offer regarding comlimentary 2013 Reach the World Membership in the ISTH aroused great interest among participants and I am sure that it would inspire higher contribution of participants from the region to the ISTH activities.

In the end, I would like to express my most sincere gratitude to Prof. Flora Peyvandi who initiated the whole idea about the meeting and to Prof. Frits R. Rosendaal for his persistent support and valuable suggestions related to the organization of the Course. I would also like to point out important role of  Mr. Cary Clark, ISTH Program and Technology Manager, and to thank him for selfless  assistance in the course of the meeting preparations. Last but not least, I would like to stress the support and help of my local Meeting Coordinators thanks to whose enthusiasm the meeting was, step by step, finalized and held as anticipated.

 

TEACHERS SUGGESTIONS THEY MAY HAVE FOR THE FUTURE

Jeroen Eikenboom

-          The 'case reports' may even be a little bit more interactive, as I tried.

-          Maybe the Thursday, November 8 was a bit too long from 8:30 till 19:30.

-        With some courses I'm used to make some small discussion groups, let's say each teacher with 15 participants together to have some kind of master class. This could have been included for the last two hours on Thursday, November 8.