Welcome to the 25th International Conference on Prenatal Diagnosis and Therapy! This is ISPD’s first virtual conference, and we look forward to three days of education and engagement with professionals from around the world. We are proud to host so many world-renowned invited speakers as they share their knowledge with our global audience. We are also very excited to welcome over 450 attendees representing every continent except Antarctica.
It’s a great shame that we are still unable to meet face to face, but one advantage of a virtual conference is that we are able to bring it to in different time zones and so hopefully reach some of you who would not otherwise be able to attend. This year ISPD will take place over three days and be repeated in two streams each day to allow for maximum global engagement via live question and answer sessions after the presentations. The conference program also boasts two debates, always a highlight of our conferences, and over 200 posters! It will be our honour to present this year’s Pioneer Award to Ronald Wapner for his many contributions to our field. Ron will speak on Monday.
Our industry partners invite you to attend their symposia and roundtables. You are welcome to chat with exhibitors and poster presenters throughout the week, especially between the two streams each day when no sessions are being held. Of course, because we have participants from all over the world, please be patient with responses as the person you are chatting with may very well be on the other side of the globe.
Looking beyond our Conference, ISPD has a number of other exciting educational opportunities in 2021. The pandemic has changed so much about how we live and work, but one small benefit is that we have learnt the value of virtual meetings to reach across the globe. We have already participated in one virtual course held over two weekends with the Shanghai Maternity and Infant Hospital and are planning another virtual course in conjunction with the National University of Singapore. We have held two webinars this year as part of our Virtual Education Series (VES), which is supported by the ISPD Education Fund with donations from our Corporate Council members. We have plans for four additional VES sessions to be held later this year as half-day courses and webinars. Please stay tuned for more details. While we are focused on virtual education this year and it may well continue to be a feature of our educational programme, we really hope we can meet again in person next year in Montréal, 19-22 June 2022. Please save the date!
With my best wishes,
Lyn Chitty, PhD, MRCOG
ISPD President, 2020-2022