“Less is more”. European Forum on Prevention and Primary Care 2024

EUROPREV 2024 - European Forum on Prevention and Primary Care was held in Edirne, Türkiye between 25-26 April 2024 in collaboration with TAHEK 2024 and EYFDM Edirne Exchange, covering the whole week. The main topic of the Forum was “Less is more”.

The week started with EYFDM Edirne Exchange on Monday and young Family Doctors were able to visit Family Medicine facilities in various settings in Edirne and observe the functioning of primary care in Türkiye. They were highly motivated to exchange ideas and knowledge, and eager to be a part of the EUROPREV Forum. 

EUROPREV Forum started on Thursday with an opening ceremony. Opening addresses were made by Forum Chair Serdar Öztora, EUROPREV President John. B. Brodersen, WONCA Europe President Shlomo Vinker (via video presentation) along with local authorities and contributors. A short concert by a classical trio of Trakya University State Conservatory was also given. 

After the ceremony, the sessions of the program started. There were 1 keynote, 5 panels, 2 free presentation sessions in the program. 
Serdar Öztora gave an opening speech about EUROPREV to inform the participants, who were mostly young and enthusiastic family physicians and residents, about aims and scope of the network. 

After the opening session, the first panel discussion on the benefits and harms of screening, presented by John Brodersen and Ahmeda Ali, generated a lot of interest in the topic.

Oral presentations were made in two sessions in two days in the main hall and the posters were presented in the monitors in the foyer. Free presentations included various topics - from tackling the negligence of obesity as a diagnosis, importance of OGTT in pregnant women, OTC vitamin supplementation, recognizing pre-diabetic patients, qualitative analysis of integrated prevention strategies for non-communicable diseases, to looking for reasons why women reject free mammograms.

Three innovative panel discussions with the emphasis on overdiagnosing and how to make primary healthcare more efficient and cost-effective were held by EYFDM representatives.

There were also two workshops, organized with the aim of discussing the current status of  prevention in primary care in Türkiye and creating possible suggestions to reorganize the  prevention in primary care; and elaborating research priorities in prevention.  The workshops were organized in two parts. At the end of the first day, two groups discussed  their topics in two rooms and worked on their agenda. On the second day, two groups’  conclusions were presented in the main hall and discussed with the contribution of all  participants.

EUROPREV Delegates Meeting was organized in the Congress Center with online participations  of the delegates that are unable to join the Forum.

A Gala Dinner was organized in a cosy restaurant with live music and dancing. The participants  had the chance of a short sightseeing tour on the way to the gala dinner venue with the shuttle  service.  

The second day started with the keynote of John Brodersen with the topic of overdiagnosis  and received a lot of attention from the participants with lots of discussions.

An interesting panel discussion led by the Chair of WONCA Planetary Health Working Party Özden Gökdemir from with the title of “From primary prevention to planetary prevention: a new dimension?” demonstrated the importance of “thinking globally, working locally” approach in an emerging topic of primary prevention as planetary prevention.
Prof. Zoi Tsimtsiou held a panel discussion on building confidence towards vaccination, a topic that due to the recent pandemics has been more than ever in center of public attention. 
One panel discussion that was based on a very sensitive subject on suicide prevention and assisted suicide was held by Dr. Katrin Von Der Assen. The panel raised a lot of questions, one especially standing out – how to approach our fellow colleagues when they express the idea of suicide or assistance in suicide.

EYFDM members and exchange participants from different countries in Europe discussed “Primary Healthcare in Europe and Quaternary Prevention Strategies” with the examples of different countries (Portugal, Italy, Lithuania, and Türkiye). 
The Forum has been a platform for creating common ground, exchanging ideas, and building  new relations for future collaborations. There were participants from 13 different countries  from all over Europe.  

On behalf of the Host Organizing Committee, I would like to express our gratitude and warmest regards to EUROPREV for giving us such an opportunity. We hope that EUROPREV 2024 Forum in Edirne will be remembered with warm memories in the future. 

Prof. Dr. Serdar Öztora 
    2024 Forum Chair