Dear Colleagues and Friends,
I am very pleased to welcome you to the 45th Annual Meeting of the European Paediatric Ophthalmological Society between 30th May and 1st June 2019, which is ntitled “From common to rare diseases: Advances in Paediatric Ophthalmology”.
The meeting this year will take EPOS to the historic Baltic region and be held in the beautiful capital of Latvia, Riga. Located on the picturesque shores of the Baltic Sea with an illustrious history going back to Hanseatic and Viking times at the crossroads between West and East, Riga is the Baltic’s largest city with a historical centre that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Our local hosts this year are Dr Sandra Valeina, EPOS Board Member and Head of Paediatric Ophthalmology at Riga’s Children’s Clinical University Hospital, and her colleagues who have worked closely with the EPOS Board over the last year to prepare an excellent conference programme.
EPOS’ main scientific aim is to advance the field of Paediatric Ophthalmology by promoting scientific research and the development and adoption of the best diagnostic and therapeutic methods available for children with visual and ocular disorders and their families.
To this effect, the meeting this year will include 37 Invited Lectures, 41 Free Papers and Rapid Fire Presentations, as well as 85 Poster Presentations, covering advances in all areas of Paediatric Ophthalmology, including ROP, myopia, oculoplastics, orbit, ocular surface disease, cataracts, glaucoma, genetics, retinal disease, oncology, neuro-ophthalmology, as well as abusive head injury and ocular trauma in children.
Last year, we introduced roundtables as a new EPOS feature to discuss an important topic in paediatric ophthalmology, using a more informal and interactive format. This year, we have prepared two roundtables around Paediatric Cataracts and National Screening Programmes for Amblyopia.
In close collaboration between Riga Children’s Clinical University Hospital and EPOS, we will also run 3 additional workshops just before and after the 45th EPOS Meeting on live oculoplastic surgery, retinoblastoma and cerebral visual impairment.
With over 300 registered delegates from 33 countries, I hope that in between the scientific sessions and amongst the great beauty of our surroundings in Riga, the meeting will promote the creative exchange of new ideas and lead to new collaborations, fellowship and friendships in our field!
To encourage young ophthalmologists under 35 years, the Board has again agreed to grant multiple Travel Awards and Prizes for Best Poster, Best Rapid Fire and Best Free Paper presentations, which will be awarded at the end of the meeting.
On behalf of the EPOS Board, I would like to thank again our local organiser, Dr Sandra Valeina, and her colleagues in Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania, for their excellent work in hosting our 45th Annual Meeting of EPOS for the first time in the Baltics. I would also like to take this opportunity to warmly thank all the speakers, contributors, sponsors and delegates for coming from many parts of the world to contribute to a very fruitful and friendly EPOS meeting in Riga.
I look much forward to meeting you and wish us a very stimulating and enjoyable time in beautiful Riga!
G Darius Hildebrand
Oxfort, United Kingdom