Riga is ready to host the participants of the Centennial congress of the ISHM Skip to main content

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Professor Alfredo Musajo-Somma was right when he wrote in the spring edition of the ISHM Newsletter: “First of all, we suggest to check your serum neutralizing antibodies for SARS-CoV-2 and / or get your vax-jab, then collect your green card (passeport d'immunité Covid-19) and book your travel ticket to Riga (Latvia) to attend the 47th ISHM Congress, 23-27 August 2021."

This is currently true, at least for the EU countries. I was convinced of this from personal experience by visiting Switzerland recently and writing these lines in Tuscany (Italy). Indeed, the key to everything is your electronic certificate with a QR code on vaccination and confirmation of your participation in the Congress by paying a participant fee.

Many of you have already decided to fly to Riga or participate in the congress online. This allowed us to draw up the preliminary scientific program of the congress. If we included all 219 applications in the program, then it would take us about 55 hours just to hear the speeches, which is unlikely in face-to-face or on-line formats. Therefore, the scientific committee of the congress decided to leave only one presentation (talk) and one poster for each author.

Abstracts, the authors of which have paid the delegate fee after 1 June, can present their theme in the form of a poster only. Anyway, all your abstracts will be published in the congress abstracts book. This allowed us to calculate the duration of each presentation (7 minutes) and discussion (3 minutes), for poster (2 minutes in the form of a short communication and 2 minutes for questions and answers), draw up a schedule for the sections, book auditoriums for sessions for participants on site and buy time to broadcast all plenaries, sessions, panels, general assembly for those who will participate in the work of the congress on-line.

Please follow updates on the congress webpage

I would like to thank my team, which has maintained its endurance over the last 4 years. I am confident that no one professional companyon organizing the big congresses like ours would have been able to cope with all the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic. My team resolved all the issues of this difficult time and is ready to welcome you. Some members of the organizing committee are already carrying out the First Summer school of the ISHM on the history of medicine. This will attract young medical historians into the ISHM.

As you can see, the longest Congress in the history of our Society, which was officially opened virtually on 25 August, 2020, worked all year in various virtual formats and is now ready to welcome delegates in Riga. Probably, such duration is the privilege of the congress, which started in the year of the centenary of the first congress on the History of Healing (Antwerp, 1920) and in the hundredth year since the founding of the ISHM (Paris, 1921).

So, let's not miss this opportunity to create the history of our Society and be participants in the congress live or online. I am waiting for you all in Riga or at the unique broadcast of the congress and its satellite conferences during the week, already from 21 August 2021.

Juris Salaks