Having left the office for 5 days to go to the EMWA Spring Conference, I returned to the obligatory email avalanche. While it was mostly junk (and unfortunately still no ‘congratulations on winning the lottery’ message…), there were some messages from friends I had just seen at the conference, and this reminded me again what a special organisation EMWA really is. I have spent a long time doing ‘the conference circuit’ both as an academic and as a medical writer covering meetings and helping to create them, but I have never before come across an organisation that can offer excellent training, great networking, and the chance to meet people so open and willing to help others in their field. That all of this is done voluntarily by the workshop leaders and members of the EMWA committees is just astounding, but is testament to how much EMWA means to everyone involved. This year's Spring Conference was another record breaker – over 400 delegates attended and the theme was ‘Health Economics and Market Access’. There were some fantastic symposia throughout the week, and the opening session was a MedComms Networking event, run jointly by EMWA and Network Pharma Ltd: ‘Better communication means better patient outcomes: vision or illusion?’. This session also let us all play with some gadgetry – IML hand-held keypads that allowed delegates to interact directly with the session chair, asking questions, making comments, or answering questions set by the panel. Great fun, and obviously with a valuable application for meetings (when not in the hands of a bunch of medical writers!).
For anyone unable to get to the Spring Conference this year, this section has a brief summary of this really interesting session. I hope you find it useful, and I hope to see you in Barcelona in November!
Lisa Chamberlain James