The virtual ISMPP West 2020 meeting, October 1-2, focused on the topics-of-the-day as they relate to medical publications and communications in a COVID-19-impacted world. With 126 participants, the meeting – themed The Winds of Change: Navigating Uncharted Territory for Medical Communication Professionals – was the third ISMPP West, and its virtual attendees extended beyond West Coast participants to other parts of the US and even global attendance.

Keynote Address Discussed Communication Challenges Surrounding Infectious Diseases

Keynote Speaker Dr. Seema Yasmin took attendees through a journey of various historical and recent situations of infectious diseases, leading up to COVID-19, and shared past and especially current communication challenges. She presented on the present-day issues of misinformation, disinformation, and malinformation, and challenged attendees to form new solutions to scientific communication challenges.

Dr. Yasmin is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, epidemiologist, author, and medical doctor. She is author of four books, including the forthcoming, Viral BS: Medical Myths and Why We Fall for Them.

Plenary Sessions Covered Lessons Learned During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Three plenary sessions held on October 1 and 2, addressed the pressure to publish and the move to virtual congresses in the wake of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

  • “Pressure to Publish. Preprints, Retractions, and Peer Review in the Spotlight” explored the challenges and opportunities associated with the increase of preprints during the COVID-19 pandemic, retractions of peer-reviewed COVID-19 study articles by prestigious medical journals, and the obstacles with traditional peer review.
  • “From a Meeting Place to a Virtual Space: Adapting to Create Impactful Congress Content” shared various current realities and best practices for effectively navigating virtual congresses, including virtual scientific posters, new opportunities for scientific communications, and the need to deliver bite-sized, impactful content.
  • “From Presentations to Conversations: Creating Dialogue in Virtual Congress Settings” presented interesting tips and best practices to encourage and increase engagement with online audiences, particularly covering challenges faced with the rapid move to virtual scientific congresses.

In honor of the esteemed faculty, ISMPP has provided a charitable donation to the Thurgood Marshall College Fund‘s COVID-19 Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Emergency Fund for students.

Session recordings and slides, as well as the Keynote Address recording and slides, are available to meeting attendees on the ISMPP West meeting app through November 30, 2020. Session slides will then be available for member access in the ISMPP West Archives on the Society’s website for personal, non-commercial use.

Roundtables Offered Virtual Peer-to-Peer Interaction on Key Topics

ISMPP West attendees had a choice from eight Roundtable topics to participate in over the two meeting days, with two new topics introduced this year:

  • Early Career Questions for Manuscript PlanningNew
  • HEOR/RWE in Publication Planning and Publication DevelopmentNew
  • Debate: Publication Plain Language Summaries – Scientific Exchange or Product Promotion?
  • Digital and Enhanced Media Options
  • Metrics for Publication Impact
  • New Insights and Opportunities: Patient-Driven Content in Medical Publications
  • Optimizing Long-Term Client-Agency Partnerships
  • Scientific Platform – Challenges

Pre-Meeting Workshops Provided Timely Education Virtually

Three pre-meeting workshops were offered virtually on September 30, with pre-workshop presentations for attendees to view and collaborative learning with peers. Two of the workshops covered the hot topics Digital Advances and Publication Planning and Visual Communication. The third workshop – Publication Planning and Management at Smaller Pharmaceutical/Biotechnology Companies – was tailored to the biotech and smaller pharma community, core attendees for the ISMPP West meeting.

Thank You to Our Program Committee and Sponsors!

ISMPP expresses our great appreciation to the ISMPP West sponsors and Program Committee members. Your support of the ISMPP West 2020 meeting was extra-special given the added obstacles of planning for a virtual event. Congratulations to all for your efforts towards a successful meeting!

ISMPP’s 2021 Meetings

Looking ahead to next year, mark your calendar for these upcoming ISMPP meetings, whether virtual, online, or hybrid format!

2021 European Meeting of ISMPP – January 26-27, 2021
Plus, The Training Zone on January 29, 2021

17th Annual Meeting of ISMPP – April 19-21, 2021

ISMPP West 2021 – October 21-22, 2021

Asia Pacific Meeting of ISMPP – Dates to be announced

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