The International Society for STD Research (ISSTDR) was formed in 1977 to strengthen research in sexually transmitted infections. Congresses have been held regularly over the last 30 years and have become the most important forum for presentation and discussion of recent findings in this field.
ISSTDR’s 18th International Congress was held at The Queen Elizabeth II Centre (QEIICC) in London, in conjunction with the British Association of Sexual Health and HIV (BASHH), the leading organisation for professionals working in the fields of STIs and HIV in the UK. Both associations created a local organising committee to work with the appointed congress organisers, Congrex UK. Congrex UK were responsible for overseeing all the operational logistics of the congress as well as managing the registration process and full abstract programme.
This was the largest meeting ISSTDR had held to date, attracting 1,300 delegates from 31 countries worldwide. The congress objectives were to provide a forum for the presentation of high quality, original scientific research and clinical practice; to promote the exchange of clinical, practical and scientific information and ideas; to provide an educational programme appropriate for all those interested in sexually transmitted disease research and as a continuing medical education opportunity for specialists; to give delegates the opportunity to network with colleagues; to strengthen and expand the effectiveness of the society; and to allow participants to keep up-to-date with industry research and developments.
The ISSTDR used the majority of QEII Centre for this event, which allowed for an exclusive feel for the congress, including event branding and awareness throughout the Centre. A commercial exhibition of pharmaceutical and equipment suppliers was held in the Benjamin Britten and Mountbatten Lounges of the Centre, which formed the hub of the congress. This provided an excellent opportunity for delegates to interact with the commercial companies and to familiarise themselves with the latest advances in technology and therapeutics.
The delegate catering also took place within the Benjamin Britten and Mountbatten Lounges of QEII Centre. Lunch, tea and coffee was served in the exhibition halls and the congress opened with an informal Welcome Reception held in this areas, further ensuring maximum contact between exhibitors and delegates.
The congress was hailed an outstanding success, by both the organisers and delegates:
“It has been a pleasure for the Congrex team to be involved in delivering this excellent congress. Much of the success was due to the strong relationships developed with the local organising committee, QEII Centre team and the experienced other preferred suppliers involved.”
Krystina Snaith, Congrex UK Account Manager
The conference was one of the best organised I have ever attended. Things worked smoothly and apparently seamlessly, and it was clear that a huge amount of effort had gone into making the event a success. It was!” Dr Sarah Hawkes, Symposium Chair ISSTDR/BASHH 2009
“ISSTDR 2009 was the biggest and the best so far as a direct result of Congrex UK’s expert organisation – I will be certainly recommending to future ISSTDRpresidents.” Cathy Ison – President ISSTDR/BASHH 2009