The ESOT Congress 2021 has been held in hybrid format at the MiCo Convention Centre in Milan from 29 August to 1 September. It is one of the first international congresses with 1.200 in-person participants plus 1.400 online attendees, with an international representation from 74 countries, including, for example, China and the USA.
The biennial European Society for Organ Transplantation’s (ESOT) Congress is the largest gathering of the transplant community in Europe bringing clinicians, surgeons, physicians, nurses, scientists, researchers and patients to review the latest developments in transplantation. AIM Group International, as the appointed PCO, has supported ESOT to organise the in-person event in Milan.
The numbers involved in the congress are huge: +850 speakers for 830 presentations (425 pre-recorded, 67 virtual delivered live and 338 on site), 1.200 abstracts were submitted, 11 break-out parallels rooms, 12 industry symposia, 3 hands-on sessions with simulation and perfusion machines and an exhibition area with +30 sponsors. All the scientific sessions were recorded and streamed online. A social program was also organised involving a President’s Dinner at the Museo della Scienza e della Tecnica cloister, the largest museum of science and technology in Italy, a welcome cocktail, some networking events at MiCo and a Board Dinner.
Some of the safety measures put in place included the Green Pass checking of every attendee, separated entry and exit flows, body temperature measurement at entrances, hand sanitising stations throughout the venue, floor signage to encourage 1m social distancing, automated IT procedures for registration, advanced medical support for those in need and all rooms set up to meet social distancing requirements. Internal air recirculation was eliminated, and all catering services were redesigned in compliance with hygiene and health safety measures.
“Organising such a major, international congress during the pandemic was a big challenge, with the sanitary situation and national legislation always evolving” explained Rosangela Quieti, Managing Director Congress Dept., AIM Group International.
“ESOT registered a very high number of in-person attendees, but in particular the number of countries and regions represented, 74 in total, is impressive and surpassed expectations. It testifies the willingness for face-to-face meetings again and the value physicians put on educational events. We are really glad to be part of this challenging, but rich project, which marks a re-start for international in-person conferences”, Rosangela Quieti continued.