ROTTERDAM IS ANYWHERE FOR PAEDIATRICIANS A ‘make-it-happen’ attitude meant delegates to ESPID’s annual congress in Rotterdamgot a avour of the Dutch city from their home- oces. Holly Patrick reports...

When ESPID and Kenes Group realised Covid-restrictions were not easing, organisers made the decision to go virtual and gave themselves a three- month lead time to put together the online conference. A NUMBERS’ GAME e meeting ended up attracting more than 3,000 delegates, a record number of attendees for the society not seen since Milan hosted ESPID’s Annual Meeting in 2013. “In Rotterdam, we expected to have around 2,800 participants, so we made a jump in terms of participants, not only in terms of numbers but also in the number of participating countries with more than 114 countries participating. We normally have around 90,” Idit adds. e online nature of the meetings also allowed a record number of participants to access the same education sessions simultaneously, with one session attracting 1,700 attendees.


he 38th Annual Meeting of the European Society of

Paediatric Infectious Diseases (ESPID) was due to take place in Rotterdam, e Netherlands in May 2020 but pivoted online in October due to the Coronavirus pandemic. But Rotterdam wasn’t about to let a record 3,200 conference delegates miss out on experiencing the ‘Manhattan on the Meuse’ and for Kenes Group, the professional conference organiser (PCO) tasked with organising ESPID’s annual meeting, cancelling was never an option. “Once the pandemic started, we made a decision to postpone the meeting because we were under the assumption that in-person meetings could take place later in the year. For ESPID it’s very important to meet, it’s a community, it’s a unique and special meeting that the ESPID members return to every year and this meeting is in their diary,” Idit Reisner, director of operations and client accounts at Kenes Group explains.


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