Dear ICCS member
I write these lines from a city struggling with the pandemic and with a dark winter almost devoid of snow. But the vaccinations are under way and there are also other signs that we are heading towards better times.
THE ICCS “VOTE”
As you know, we could not have an ordinary General Assembly in 2020. So, after gathering the views of all members, we decided to have an electronic vote in order to fill the four upcoming vacancies in the Board. The outgoing members were Kostas Kamperis (first mandate period), Eliane Fonseca (second period), Anne Wright (second period) and Ann Raes (second period). The Board’s nominees for the vacant posts were Kostas Kamperis, Ubirajara Barroso, Yoshiyuki Ohtomo and Erik van Laecke. We received no nominations from the membership at large. Whether this was due to the members being happy with our choices or that the members had other more pressing things on their minds I do not know. We went forward with the “vote” anyway, and the results were the following: out of the 40 members voting only one “no” vote for one nominee was cast. We received several valuable comments from the membership, almost all of which were in support of our strategy. I would like to thank all voting members for caring and providing feedback – it is really appreciated. I feel that we have a Board that is endorsed by the members.
At the same time I would like to thank 1) Eliane Fonseca for bringing Latin America to the ICCS and the ICCS to Latin America, 2) Ann Raes for always providing sound advice and good judgement and representing the great research center of Ghent, 3) Anne Wright for getting us to London, for being such an excellent teacher and for being an ideal Secretary General, and 4) Kostas, for staying on Board (you will be thanked more profusely in four years’ time!) and agreeing to be our new Secretary General.
THE NEW ICCS BOARD
Our new Brazilian Board member, Ubirajara Barroso Jr, or “Bira” in short (which, by the way, is slang for beer in Swedish), is a very active and friendly pediatric urologist from Salvador. He is deeply involved in LUT research and has contributed to several ICCS courses. Yoshiyuki Ohtomo, a pediatric nephrologist from Tokyo, has also contributed much to the ICCS efforts and was one of the brains behind the ICCS Conference in Kyoto 2016. He is, I gather, a train nerd. Finally, Erik van Laecke, is a ped urologist and our new reporesentative from Ghent, Belgium. He has great expertise in the urology of children with special needs, and other fields, and likes to go for long walks in the mountains (not in Belgium, I presume).
Also, our great friend and nestor, professor Mario De Gennaro, has after many years stepped down from his position as Chairman of the Edicational Committee. He has guided our teaching efforts and started the successful e-learning project, as well as provided excellent input during all our Board meetings. He has now grown a moustache and will spend his time with children and grandchildren. We will miss you, Mario!
As new Chairman of the Educational committee we chose our friend Anne Wright. We did so because she has such an excellent track record for arranging courses, because she is very familiar with how the Board works, and since we like her so much.
THE ICCS CONFERENCE IN AARHUS
Aarhus is a lovely, friendly, vibrant city in Jutland, Denmark. It is well-connected with the rest of Europe (and the world) and has aptly been described as the world’s smallest big city. It is also home to one of the best research teams in our field, led by people like Søren Rittig and Kostas Kamperis. In August 26-28 they will host the 2021 ICCS conference, which will properly start the ICCSs post-Covid renaissance. Mark the dates and, as soon as restrictions are lifted, book your tickets!
OTHER UPCOMING EVENTS
We have, as yet, not decided where the 2022 conference will be. We have two very attractive bids and will decide shortly. I will probably be able to announce where it will be in my next members’ letter, so stay tuned!
The ICCS course in Tbilisi, Georgia, that was first planned for the spring 2020 and then scheduled for October 2020 has of course been postponed. We hope that it will take place in late May or early June 2021, but of course even these dates are preliminary. It will be the first time that the ICCS is in the Caucasus and it will be just great.
The ESPU meeting in Lisbon, Portugal, will take place in September (not April) 2021. The exact dates are not set yet, but your Society will be present and active.
THE E-LEARNING COURSE
An extra important way to spread the word in this time of cancelled courses and strangled international transport options is our e-learning course. It is readily available from the website and I promis that it won’t make you disappointed.
The standardisation document on urotherapy, made under the excellent leadership of Board member Anka Nieuwhof-Leppink is forthcoming in the J Ped Urol. It is much needed and will surpass your expectations.
The ICCS guidelines on continence problems in children with neurodevelopmental issues, by Alexander von Gontard, Anne Wright and other well-known experts, is nearing completion.
A document on the neurogenic bowel is about to be started.
Please do not hesitate to pose questions and suggestions to us in the Board or to the ICCS Regional Representative from your part of the world. It is your activity that keeps us going.
You will hear from me again later in early spring. Stay safe until then – wash your hands, stay in contact with your loved ones and listen to the experts, not the conspiratory theorists.
Tryggve Nevéus MD PhD
President, International Children’s Continence Society
Associate Professor, Consultant in Pediatric Nephrology
Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden