It is time for me to give you another brief update on the activities of the EMWA Executive Committee (EC) and our plans for 2013, as well as a short preview on the spring conference in Manchester.
The autumn conference in Berlin was a great success and was attended by over 200 members. More than 100 members responded to the post-conference survey and 99% confirmed that the conference had fulfilled their objectives with regard to training, networking, lecturing, general programme content, and obtaining credits for EMWA certification. With regard to the latter, I am sure many members will be happy to hear that the EC has now decided to extend the duration of future autumn conferences so that it will be possible to attend a maximum of four workshops at these events in future.
At the EC meeting in Berlin it was also decided to introduce an EMWA student scholarship and to dedicate this to the memory of the late Geoff Hall, a former EMWA president and one of the founder members of the organisation, who himself received the first Nick Thompson Fellowship in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the development of EMWA as a fully fledged independent organisation. The Geoff Hall Scholarship will be awarded to two students each year and will include 2 years of free membership, free conference registration for the duration of the scholarship, and one free foundation course at the first conference. The scholarship will be officially launched at the spring conference in Manchester and details on how to apply for 2014 will be published on the website and in the journal.
Following the excellent responses to both the freelance survey and the salary survey at the end of last year, we hope that the feedback from the E-learning survey will help us to determine the interest of our members in online training opportunities. Although distance learning obviously cannot (and will not) replace the EMWA conferences, the EC are aware that a large proportion of members are unable to regularly attend these events. Therefore, the possibility of online training could add to the repertoire of the organisation and enable more members to profit from their EMWA membership. So please do complete the survey and let us know your needs, so that we can investigate how to best serve your requirements!
Looking forward to the Manchester conference in May, the new style programme includes a full day's symposium on Writing for Health Economics and Market Access, which includes plenary sessions led by international experts providing insights on ‘Health Economics and Medical Writing’, ‘The HTA perspective: a view from NICE’, ‘Writing for Health Technology Assessment’ and ‘Consolidated Health Economic Evaluation Reporting Standards’, as well as ‘Providing Value for Medicines in Elderly People’. There will be panel discussions and plenty of opportunity to ask questions and interact with the speakers. Of course in addition to the symposium we will be offering over 50 different workshops on a wide range of medical writing topics as well as lots of interesting and entertaining social events. We do recommend early registration for the conference, as the popular workshops tend to fill up very quickly!
So, on that note I will just add that I hope to see many of you in Manchester very soon and look forward to a lively and well-attended conference.