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- AfricaPCR: a new Course is born in the PCR family!
AfricaPCR: a new Course is born in the PCR family!
The first session held under the auspices of AfricaPCR, the new member of the PCR family, took place during the SAHeart congress, in Sun City, South Africa, on 20th of July 2012.
After an introduction by Jean Marco, Honorary Chairman of PCR, 6 sessions organised in collaboration with SASCI allowed participants to share during one day, on the “Difficulties in treatment of STEMI patients”.
The second edition of this Course will take place on 22nd February 2013 during the world congress of Paediatric Cardiology & Cardiac Surgery. Built in collaboration with PCR, SASCI, SAHeart and PASCAR, this one-day Course will focus on Interventional Medicine for pericardial and valvular disease.
Farrel Hellig, Adriaan Snyders and Sajidah Khan, Faculty members of the First edition of AfricaPCR, kindly gave us their feedback on this meaningful day.
PCRonline: How did this first AfricaPCR in Sun City go?
Farrel Hellig, SASCI President, AfricaPCR Course Director: This day represented the realisation of a dream to expand education in interventional cardiovascular medicine in Africa using the PCR philosophy of “by and for” the community.
The subject for the 1-day symposium was “Difficulties in Treatment of STEMI Patients”. Faculty included speakers from South Africa, Kenya, Europe and the USA. The current knowledge base and guidelines were contextualised to reflect the challenges on the African continent given the local constraints and circumstances.
Some highlights of the programme included: the unique challenges in creating reperfusion strategies for Africa, appropriate use of pharmacological agents and technologies given local constraints, multivessel disease in STEMI in an African context and STEMI complications.
Presentations were case based and highlighted why Africa PCR will play an important role going forward. Audience participation was a feature of the meeting and discussion between panel members and the audience was animated. The room remained full throughout the day.
I am very pleased with the contribution of both speakers and audience in making this edition of Africa PCR a success, thereby creating great enthusiasm amongst the attendees for future editions of Africa PCR.
Adriaan Snyders, President of SA Heart: The South African Heart Association (SA Heart) is proud to have hosted the first meeting of Africa PCR during our SA Heart 2012 Congress in Sun City on 20 July 2012. This great learning and educational opportunity realized after many hours of enthusiastic discussions between SA Heart, SASCI (South African Society for Cardiovascular intervention) and PASCAR (Pan African Society of Cardiology).
The discussion on SEMI Early Reperfusion was much needed in an environment where patients often arrive too late to receive appropriate therapy. We were fortunate to have world-renowned experts available to assist our excellent local faculty to discuss this in depth. Audience participation was outstanding testifying to the passion amongst cardiologists to solve the problems.
Prof Jean Marco, the founder of PCR and Prof William Wijns, Chairman of PCR, were joined by Prof David Holmes, Past president of the ACC, Prof Bernard Gersh, Ex South African and professor at the Mayo Clinic, Dr Martin Thomas from London, Dr Legutko from Poland and Dr Otieno from Kenya to complement our local faculty in active discussion and learning. Dr Farrel Hellig, President of SASCI with Drs Tom Mabin and Graham Cassel were the driving force, with the support of SA Heart, to bring this event to reality.
All attendees agreed that this was one of the many highlights of our congress. We are looking forward to the next Africa PCR meeting which is planned in association with the 6th World Paediatric Cardiology / SA Heart 2013 Congress in Cape Town during February 2013. Thereafter the meeting might move into Africa where many of our colleagues have already made an impact on training in cardiology and would welcome this opportunity to further the skills of those practicing in the respective countries.
I congratulate Africa PCR on the quality of this launch meeting. We are eagerly awaiting the next meetings which will be focused on the needs of Africa and include participation by our cardiothoracic surgeons, paediatric cardiologists and associated professionals.
I invite our colleagues from over the world to share in this unique experience.
Sajidah Khan, Speaker during the First Course: I thought the inaugural meeting was a great start to AfricaPCR. In a region where infectious diseases place an overwhelming burden on the healthcare system, resources for the management of non-communicable diseases are limited. In my experience it was the first time that a local meeting provided a platform where the discrepancies in practice between the state and private sectors were discussed. We’ve tended to operate in isolation and this meeting created awareness for the need to support each other as well as formulate a cohesive regional and national policy for the management of STEMI. Even though it broke new ground, the meeting still catered to the usual educational needs of colleagues interested purely in the technical aspects of PCI. The “by you, for you” ethos was clearly evident with a good mix of local speakers aided by the input of international experts. There was good audience interaction throughout and feedback from colleagues was that the meeting was meaningful and relevant.
PCRonline: Why the creation of this new Course, AfricaPCR?
Farrel Hellig, SASCI President, AfricaPCR Course Director: Africa PCR 2013 will be held on 22 February 2013 in Cape Town, South Africa during the 6th World Congress of Paediatric Cardiology and Cardiac Surgery. The 2013 edition will focus on Pericardial disease, Mitral stenosis and Aortic stenosis in an African context. Principles of “by and for” the community will be expanded in 2013 to ensure a meeting we can all look forward to.
Africa is a continent with vast educational needs. Africa PCR has the potential to fill a specific hitherto unmet need in the interventional cardiovascular medicine space. Africa has many similarities to Europe but has even more differences. The educational tools developed by PCR over many decades offer the opportunity to translate current knowledge of best practice and guidelines into an African context.
A committee of Africans has compiled an African needs analysis, in order to plot our pathway to meet our educational objectives, with the view to improving the lives of African patients. In this way the PCR toolbox will be used by Africa, for Africa. Focus will be on learning techniques and practical skills and transfer of knowledge, experience and practice through case-based discussions. Additionally, Africa PCR will develop new educational tools based on our unique experience and expertise, thereby contributing to the PCR family.
While the initial editions of Africa PCR will take place in South Africa, in the future, the event will be held in other African countries, creating a meeting “by and for” the African continent.