Volume 7, Issue 7 July 2010
Re: Brief Report on Board of Directors Retreat in London, June 2010
Based on strategic areas explored by the Executive Committee at its retreat earlier in 2010, each Board member participated in a task force leading up to a half-day retreat to identify new initiatives for WAO. A very well-prepared Board met in London for the retreat, allowing it to have focused discussions on new initiatives that reflect WAO's growing role and responsibilities. These initiatives are now being prioritized so they may be implemented in a timely fashion.
New initiatives discussed include the formation of a WAO Foundation primarily dedicated to benefit various educational and training projects. In addition, a WAO Junior Group will be formed to give individuals, 35 years or younger, better representation in WAO activities, meetings, councils, and committees. The Junior Group will also develop educational programs unique for its age group, participate in the WAO website and be represented at the World Allergy Congress meetings.
The World Allergy Organization logo is recognized throughout the world. A tag line was approved to be included under the WAO logo: "A World Federation of Allergy, Asthma and Clinical Immunology Societies". That's what WAO is — a federation of national and regional member organizations — all with interest in allergic diseases, asthma and clinical immunology. This statement will enhance WAO's ability to support a range of educational programs and research initiatives, particularly as they relate to clinical immunology and immunodeficiency.
Because WAO is a federation of national and regional member organizations, it is absolutely essential that it work with these groups in a collaborative and cooperative manner in many of its activities. It makes no sense for the WAO to prepare a position paper without involving these groups. Likewise, it makes no sense for the regional and/or member societies to publish position papers or statements which do not include WAO. WAO is working to increase collaboration and cooperation among its national and regional member organizations.
I'm pleased to report that a new collaborative effort between the American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology (AAAAI) and WAO is underway. This initiative will result in online educational programming for and by the training programs in North America. Selected topics will be presented by experts. This online programming will be available free for all trainees and allergists/immunologists throughout the world. This collaboration illustrates how WAO can partner with its regional member societies to enhance education for physicians and other healthcare professionals throughout the world.
I hope to see all of you at the upcoming WAO International Scientific Conference on "Asthma and Co-morbid Conditions", which will take place in Dubai, December 5 - 8, 2010, and the XXII World Allergy Congress 2011 to take place in Cancun, December 4 - 8, 2011. For more information log onto www.worldallergy.org.
Richard F. Lockey, MD