ISSUE 34, September 2018
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Official newsletter of the International Society of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine

President's message

Dear colleagues:

It is an honor and a privilege to become President of ISPRM. This is an organization that aims to bring together and lead medical professionals around the world dedicated to the betterment of society by enhancing the quality of life of persons with disabilities. ISPRM promotes rehabilitation and rehabilitation medicine as a philosophy of care. It is hard, if not impossible, to find a better cause. We should be proud of what we do and enthusiastic about our future and our possibilities to make a difference in a dynamic and complex world.

During this transition, it is only fair to begin this message with a thank you note to all those that have contributed during the last two years to this organization. My most sincere thanks to Prof. Jorge Lains, now immediate past-president, for an outstanding job during his tenure as president. Also, many thanks to all those who participated in the activities of ISPRM as members of the governance structure and the committees. All of your contributions to our mission, together, have made a difference.

The 12th ISPRM World Congress in Paris was an outstanding event. The national societies of France and Belgium joined efforts to put together an excellent scientific program and very special social events. To Professors Alain Yelnik, André Thevenon, Isabelle Laffont, and Thierry Lejeune we owe a very sincere congratulation for a job well done. This meeting strengthened not only ISPRM but the medical specialty of Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine. I sincerely believe that the participants in the Congress went back home feeling very good about their chosen field of practice and research. With an impressive attendance of over 4,000 enthusiastic professionals including approximately 800 trainees, many outstanding presentations and workshops to choose from, and a cutting edge exhibit we should all be extremely satisfied with the outcomes.

Now, we need to turn our attention to the 13th ISPRM World Congress to be held in Kobe, Japan, during the dates of June 9-13, 2019. It promises to be a very exciting event and I would like to encourage all members of ISPRM to attend. Our Japanese colleagues are already working hard to put together a scientific program and social events that will make the attendees very happy. Under the leadership of Professors Eiichi Saitoh and Kazuhisa Domen, our colleagues in Japan have been challenged to take us to the next level and I believe they will be successful. A combination of Japanese science, technology, and culture will provide an excellent opportunity for international visitors to share their research, expertise, and interests. More information will be available very soon!

I would like to end this brief note with a message to all members, national societies and individuals. To continue on this positive and productive trajectory we need all members to be active in ISPRM. Your participation and contributions are needed if we want to fulfill our goals. I will be looking forward to working with you in the next two years!

Very sincerely yours,
Walter R. Frontera, MD, PhD
ISPRM President

The JISPRM - First issue released during ISPRM 2018!

The inaugural issue of ISPRM's online open-access journal - The JISPRM - was released during ISPRM 2018 in Paris and contains selected abstracts from the 2018 World Congress.
The next issue, containing original scientific articles, is scheduled to be published in September.

We are inviting all ISPRM members to submit their articles to support the development of our Journal.

Access the JISPRM here >>

12th ISPRM World Congress, France 2018 - We are the champions!

By André Thevenon, Alain Yelnik - ISPRM 2018 Congress Presidents and Isabelle Laffont - ISPRM 2018 Congress Scientific Committee Chair

From the 9th to 12th July, the ISPRM annual World Congress took place in Paris. Things had started very well when the call for abstracts resulted in 2,689 abstracts submitted.

The programme followed the classical skeleton of the ISPRM World Congress, with 2 or 3 plenary keynote lectures each day and 6 parallel sessions during the remainder of the time, however some specific features were added:
  • High representation of various emerging topics in PRM, such as vocational rehabilitation, cognitive and speech disorders, cancer, biological markers of recovery, and regenerative medicine
  • The Congress Scientific Committee chose to have a high number of oral communications from the abstract proposals for oral presentations (430). This was permitted by the number of free paper sessions (21) and by the inclusion of thematic poster tours with short oral presentation.
  • In addition to the traditional Sunday workshops, 45 short workshops were successfully organized throughout the congress 
  • The innovation contest was also a premiere in an ISPRM World Congress, 55 start-up companies participated.
The large exhibition hall of the Paris congress center was completely full with 77 booths, a clear sign of the strong commitment from our industry partners.

The 4,005 registrations constitute the record for an European ISPRM World Congress, with three quarters of registrations from outside the welcoming country adding another record. Attendees came from 104 different countries, with 264 attendees from Japan, 204 from USA, 115 from Turkey, 111 from Australia, 100 from South Korea as the top participating countries after France. The African region was also very well represented with 119 attendees. One third of the attendees were under 35 years old, which shows that PRM has a promising future.

We are sure however that the next congress will be even more attractive, with the know-how of our Japanese colleagues and their large and dynamic scientific society!

Please fill out this short survey to help us to further improve future educational activities!

Please take a few minutes to complete the AAP educational needs assessment - As this will help both ISPRM and AAP to further develop future educational activities.

Complete the survey here >>

Committee update -
Disaster Rehabilitation Committee (DRC): Role and future agenda

By Fary Khan, Bhasker Amatya1,2
The Disaster Rehabilitation Committee (DRC) (previously known as the Committee on Rehabilitation Disaster Relief) is an ISPRM committee founded at the 5th ISPRM World Congress (Istanbul, Turkey, 2009), which contributes to the society’s humanitarian agenda to advocate for Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (PRM) perspective in minimizing disability, optimizing function and health-related quality of life of persons who sustain traumatic injury and those with pre-existing disability in a natural or man-made disasters. 
Consistent with ISPRM goals, the DRC goals advance the global disaster rehabilitation community of practice, which include (but not limited to): support ISPRM member National Society response to disasters; provide education and training resources on rehabilitation disaster management; host disaster rehabilitation programming at ISPRM congresses and other professional meetings; provide expert PRM consultation to WHO and other rehabilitation disaster management stakeholders; partner with WHO, other international rehabilitation professional societies, and other organizations to   advance global disaster rehabilitation policy and practice; and perform and facilitate disaster rehabilitation research.


ISPRM joins CARF's International Advisory Council

ISPRM has joined CARF’s International Advisory Council. Sam Wu, ISPRM Treasurer, will function as the liaison on the IAC. ISPRM is committed to continuously improve Physical and Rehabilitation Medicine (PRM) practice and facilitate PRM input in international health organizations with the goal to contribute to optimal functioning and quality of life of people experiencing disability, and sees the potential to contribute to CARF's role in advancing quality service through its standards and accreditation.

Read the press release >>

National Society update: Colombian Association of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (ACMFR)

The 4th International Congress on Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, the XXIX National International Congress on Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, and the 1st International Congress on Movement, Disability and Autonomy was hosted by the Colombian Association of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation (ACMFR) in Santa Marta, Colombia from August 16th-18th 2018.

The congress attracted 614 participants from 13 countries including Colombia, Argentina, Chili, Peru, Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, Cuba, Puerto Rico, United States, Spain, Portugal and Switzerland.

Over 80 lecturers, among which 15 international lecturers, from more than 10 countries shared their experience, academic and research developments, and cutting edge knowledge about Movement, Disability and Autonomy.

Read the full article here >>

ISPRM takes part in the WHO Technical Working Group to develop the Package of Priority Rehabilitation Interventions

By Nitin Jain, Abena Tannor, Nazirah Hasnan and Wouter de Groote 

From 18 to 20 April the WHO Technical Working Group met for the first time in Bangalore, India. This Technical Working Group is mandated by WHO to develop the ‘Package of Rehabilitation Interventions’, which will be used as a planning tool for service delivery by ministries of health in low- and middle-income countries. The use of the package will be the third step in the process of a country in order to integrate rehabilitation within the health care system, along the continuum of care. The eventual goal of this exercise that will last over the next 2 years is to provide a framework for health ministries in low- and middle-income countries to improve access to health services (including rehabilitation); strengthen rehabilitation, assistive technology, support services, and community-based rehabilitation; and, strengthen collection of disability data and research. Thus, the workshop represents an important step in future policy decisions about access to rehabilitation services for persons with disability in low- and middle-income countries.

During the workshop in Bangalore an alpha version of the ‘Package of Rehabilitation Interventions’ was created. The participants described rehabilitation interventions for different health conditions, and their ‘symptoms’ within the ICF domains. The International Classification of Health Interventions (ICHI) was then used to determine targets and means of the interventions, before adding other components like actors, level of specialty, and service delivery recommendations.

ISPRM nominated four of its members to be part of this endeavour: Nitin Jain, Abena Tannor,  Nazirah Hasnan  and Wouter De Groote.

Cochrane Rehabilitation Newsletter

The Newsletter contains an update on the Cochrane Rehabilitation activities, Cochrane Systematic Reviews and blogshots of rehabilitation interest.
Cochrane Newsletter - Issue 12 - September 2018 >>
Cochrane Newsletter - Issue 11 - August 2018 >>
Cochrane Newsletter - Issue 10 - July 2018 >>

Upcoming events

Stay up-to-date about PRM events throughout the year  
 ISPRM representatives will be present at the marked Congresses

The following events will take place in the coming months:
ENDORSED BY ISPRM: 3rd World Online Master Course 2018 - Principles and Practice of Scoliosis Conservative Treatment (PPSCT)
1 February - 31 October 2018, online

► AMLAR 2018
3-6 October 2018, Guayaquil, Ecuador

International Ultrasound Course
9-12 October, Ghent, Belgium

21-24 November 2018, Auckland, New Zealand

XXV Congreso Mexicano de Medicina Física y Rehabilitación
5-8 December 2018, Cancun, Mexico

If you want to have your upcoming event listed here as well, contact us through

Future ISPRM World Congresses

13th ISPRM World Congress - ISPRM 2019
9-13 June, Kobe, Japan

14th ISPRM World Congress - ISPRM 2020
4-9 March, Orlando, USA

15th ISPRM World Congress - ISPRM 2021
16-19 May, Lisbon, Portugal
Chair of the News & Views sub-committee: André Thévenon

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