I am honored to be appointed by our President, Dr. Nazim Cerkes, as the new Chairman for the ISAPS Educational Council (EC), and have Dr. Francisco Bravo as EC Vice Chair. However, I do wish I was writing this letter under better circumstances.
In 2020, we closed our doors to live events due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and even now, after months of quarantine, the future remains unclear. We are currently living in a world where most scientific events have become virtual. And while this new platform presents advantages, it lacks the personal touch that was present in our live meetings. Yes it is the reality of today, but we, the EC of ISAPS, are working to recreate that personal touch through our current programs. While we believe we will be unable to hold live meetings until the first half of 2021, we have a very hardworking and devoted group of plastic surgeons in the new council, who, after putting our heads together for several weeks, have come up with many ideas on how to provide quality virtual aesthetic education to our members. In this letter, I plan to go over a summary of these events.
Firstly, we are continuing our monthly ISAPS Master Webinars until the end of June, and, depending on the situation, are prepared to continue holding them until the end of the year. Additionally, we are planning multiple specialty events on a variety of subjects such as hair transplant, rhinoplasty, and regenerative medicine, and all of them will be including live surgeries. We also wish to give our members the opportunity to share their work and ideas with the rest of the world. For this purpose, we have begun organizing the first Voice of ISAPS event in February, where our members will have the opportunity to present their work and best papers which will then be included in the program of the ISAPS Biennial Meeting.
We also have begun organizing a unique event called ISAPS World, a two-day program in March where each region of the world will be putting together and presenting their own event with their own speakers. The program will start with speakers from Australia and New Zealand, following the path of the sun as it rises in Australia. And throughout the program, we will continue following the sun’s path as we present speakers from East Asia, India, the Middle East, Europe, and lastly the Americas, before repeating the process the next day. After all, ISAPS is meant to be a unique educational organization where plastic surgeons from all over the world can come together. This pandemic has created borders that have separated us, but through ISAPS World and similar events, we intend to ensure that our love for aesthetic surgery will continue to unite us.
Additionally, we are putting together an ISAPS Business School for April. We also intend to continue supporting the National Societies with virtual ISAPS Symposia being planned during their annual meetings. ISAPS FAST Program and ISAPS Visiting Professor Program will also continue, but on a virtual platform.
By the second half of 2021, we are hoping to hold hybrid events at the least as well as our Biennial Meeting in Vienna, which was postponed for September 2021. We are also looking forward to Istanbul Meeting in 2022 which we plan to be a wonderful meeting in a wonderful city. Nonetheless, whatever happens, we, the Educational Council of ISAPS, will continue with our mission to provide the best aesthetic education in the world. And I look forward to working with all of you to accomplish this.