The 88th EGPRN meeting was held in Tampere, Finland from 9-12 May this year. The topic of the meeting was "Research on Multimorbidity in Primary Care". 319 participants from 31 countries attended the conference, which is a new participant record in EGPRN congress history. During the Tampere meeting, a national one-day congress was exceptionally combined to EGPRN congress and this turned out to be a success. 182 participants from Finland participated in the congress.
With at least one abstract coming from 28 countries, a total of 76 abstracts were selected out of 113 submissions. At least one third of the accepted papers were focused on the theme of the meeting.
EGPRN is well-known for several collaborative research groups, which engage researchers to EGPRN community. Seven EGPRN based collaborative research groups had their meetings during the congress. All groups and their studies are led by active EGPRN members and most of them receive financial support from the organisation.
The keynote speech was given by Prof. Bruce Guthrie from University of Edinburgh, Scotland on the topic “The challenges of multimorbidity for health services and researchers”. Bruce Guthrie introduced the challenges the health systems must respond when facing the growing number of multimorbid patients. Moreover, he presented the latest research on multimorbidity and pointed out the challenges regarding multimorbidity and polypharmacy interventions.
The local keynote was given by Prof. Elise Kosunen from Tampere University on the topic “Multiprofessional primary health care and challenges of multimorbidity”. Elise Kosunen presented the Finnish health care system in historical perspective and reflected the challenges of multimorbidity in multidisciplinary Finnish primary care.
The meeting was held in the traditional EGPRN format with pre-conference workshops, presentation of theme papers and freestanding papers, a parallel poster session and one slide/five minute presentations. On the Friday a Research Cafe was arranged during the lunch break, which provided an opportunity for junior researches to meet and discuss individually with a senior researcher on their own research projects and the challenges regarding them.
A unique and interactive EGPRN poster session was held, where posters were presented by another participant and authors responded to questionsi asked. 30 posters were presented in six lively sessions. The best poster prize was awarded to the poster "Violence Towards Young General Practitioners in Croatia Remain in Silence - a pilot study" by authors Iva Jurčević, Marina Oljača Pribanić, Durdica Lazic.
EGPRN is widely recognised as an organisation with a focus on research supporting young doctors to start their academic development. The EGPRN Fellowship Program is a great example of a successful and unique activity. First started in May 2017, the Program aims to provide young fellows with the knowledge and skills to carry their own research projects. During Tampere meeting the latest achievement of this program – a new research protocol - was presented in a special session.
Tampere meeting ended with a joyful social event where dance floor was crowded from the first song to the last. We hope that in the next EGPRN meeting, which will be held between the 17-20 October 2019, in Vigo, Spain, will see as many interesting studies, innovative projects and great ideas as were seen during the Tampere meeting. The theme of the Vigo meeting will be “General Practice and the Community: research on health service, quality improvement and training”.
Tuomas Koskela and all the members of the PR and Communications Committee:
Tiny van Merode
Ana Luisa Neves