Volume 8, Issue 1 January 2011
As the New Year begins, I congratulate all of you on WAO accomplishments in 2010. There were major strides made through outreach programs in key regions where allergy/immunology training and services are needed. New educational programs, such as the WAO Asthma and Allergic Rhinitis Online Lecture Series, were made available on the WAO web site. Please access them and use them for self-education and the education of others. Key documents, including the World Allergy Organization (WAO) Diagnosis and Rationale against Cow’s Milk Allergy (DRACMA) Guidelines, were published and will serve physicians worldwide. They, too, are available in a list of WAO publications at: http://www.worldallergy.org/publications/. Relationships were strengthened or new ones built to help move the WAO initiatives forward. All of this work contributed to the field of allergy, asthma and immunology and, in the process, improved patient care.
The WAO International Scientific Conference (WISC) 2010 in Dubai, UAE was a big part of this effort. As the first of its kind, the Dubai WISC had over 1,400 attendees with 71 countries represented and 55 versatile faculty members, who collectively covered 142 sessions. This was possible because of the dedication and hard work of so many people. Both the Local Organizing and Regional Advisory Committees were critical to the success of this Conference. Ruby Pawankar, Organizing Chair; Yehia El-Gamal, Regional Advisor; Walter Canonica, Executive Chair of the Scientific Program Executive Committee, with Co-Chairs Eric Bateman, Stephen Holgate and Robert Lemanske, are to be commended for their outstanding efforts from start to finish. A full list of organizers is available at: http://www.worldallergy.org/2010dubai/conference/organizing_committees.php. I also want to acknowledge the WAO Board of Directors whose participation in all aspects of the Conference reflects WAO’s commitment to support the efforts of allergists/immunologists in all parts of the world.
Now, we look forward to the XXII World Allergy Congress in Cancún, México, December 4-8, 2011. An exciting scientific program is being developed under the competent direction of Thomas Casale and the Scientific Program Steering Committee members: Stephen Holgate, Marek Kowalski, Hae-Sim Park, Ruby Pawankar, Noel Rodríguez Perez, Lanny Rosenwasser, and Nelson Rosario. A full spectrum of sessions is planned. This will include: full and half-day “New Horizon” Symposia, Debates, Expert Interviews and Conversations, Hands-on Workshops, Meet the Expert Breakfast Sessions, Sister (Member) Society Sessions, Plenary Sessions, Q&A Panel Sessions, Satellite Symposia, University-Sponsored Symposia, Sessions with Affiliate Organizations, programming by the soon-to-be-launched WAO Junior Member Group and Video Conferences and Discussions. In addition, there will be special sessions and luncheons for Allied Health Professionals and Fellows-in-Training. Everyone is looking forward to the scientific program and WAO’s visit to Cancún, and all that it has to offer in the month of December.
I have the great pleasure of sharing with you an accomplishment recognized through one of England’s highest awards; the Queen’s New Year Honours List. Stephen Holgate, who is professor of immunopharmacology at the University of Southampton, and a member of the WAO Board of Directors, was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) for service to clinical science through leadership in allergy and asthma research. To read more about Prof. Holgate’s recognition, view the press release online at the University of Southampton: http://www.soton.ac.uk/mediacentre/news/2010/dec/10_145.shtml.
My very best wishes to all of you in 2011, and I look forward to seeing you in Cancun.
Richard F. Lockey