2017 European Meeting Wrap-Up
Neurosurgeons earned a break and a return to the diurnal after the European fall meetings. In addition to being amidst the best neurosurgical practitioners in the world, necks were stiff from swiveling to see the great art and culture in every corner of Istanbul and Venice – host cities to the World Federation of Neurological Surgeons (WFNS) Congress and the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies (EANS) Congress respectively. Neurosurgery approached from all sides during the day, and art and culture from all sides in the evenings. The experiences are something to be thankful for, but home provides some much-needed respite from the grandeur.
World Federation of Neurological Surgeons (WFNS) Congress
Where Europe meets Asia, Istanbul provided a fitting location for the world of neurosurgery from August 20-25, 2017 at the WFNS Congress. Neurosurgical delegates from around the world and renowned neurosurgeons converged on this transcontinental city with the mission of building a stronger federation of neurosurgeons to benefit patients worldwide.
Istanbul was also a fitting place to see the presidential transition of power from now Past President Yong Kwang Tu, MD, PhD, from Taipei, Taiwan to Franco Servadei, MD, of Parma, Italy. It is the delegates’ decision that, although officer positions have been changed to two-year terms, that Dr. Servadei will serve back-to-back terms as WFNS president. In addition to this change in command, there is a new slate of WFNS officers, including AANS members Christopher M. Loftus, MD, FAANS, elected to first vice-president and Anil Nanda, MD, MPH, FAANS, elected to second vice-president.
The AANS is the continental society for North America and led a delegation of 16 neurosurgeons from the following societies:
- American Academy of Neurological Surgery
- American Association of Neurological Surgeons
- Canadian Neurosurgical Society
- Neurosurgical Society of America
- Society of Neurological Surgeons
- Society of University Neurosurgeons
- World Association of Lebanese Neurosurgeons
Delegates approved various other changes to the organization in addition to limiting officer terms to two years. Changes include meeting online to reduce travel costs, changing the scope of nominating committee responsibilities to guarantee democratic elections, transferring an account balance in excess of $1 million to the WFNS Foundation to strengthen support of charitable causes and various other important changes affecting the World Congress.
Many other AANS members were also elected to fill various important officer positions, including Frederick A. Boop MD, FAANS, to the Audit Committee; Jacques Morcos, MD, FAANS, to the Constitution and Bylaws Committee; Kenan Arnautovic, MD, PhD, FAANS, to the Publication and Web Committee; P. David Adelson, MD, FAANS, to Coordinator of Committee Activities; and Praveen Mummaneni, MD, FAANS, to the Nominating Committee. This gives AANS and its delegation an important role in stewarding WFNS resources and driving its influence on the world of neurosurgery.
European Association of Neurosurgical Societies (EANS) Congress
As if neurosurgery had not taken in enough beauty at the WFNS Congress in Istanbul, later from October 1-5, 2017, neurosurgeons met at the European Association of Neurosurgical Societies (EANS) Congress near Venice, on the neighboring Lido di Venezia island. The meeting took place between the historic Palazzo del Cinema, renowned for being the home of the Venice Film Festival, and the Palazzo del Casino.
This congress saw a change in leadership from J. André Grotenhuis, MD, PhD, IFAANS, previous AANS International Lifetime Recognition Award recipient, to Jesus LaFuente, MD, as president of the association. Dr. LaFuente will serve in this role from 2017 until 2019.
In attendance on behalf of the AANS, were Alex B. Valadka, MD, FAANS, AANS president and Robert F. Spetzler, MD, FAANS, AANS ambassador to the EANS. Both were active participants in the meeting and expert speakers in the plenary sessions.
Next spring, the AANS will welcome EANS as a collaborating society for the 2018 AANS Annual Scientific Meeting in New Orleans. Although not possessing the ancient grandeur of Istanbul and Venice, New Orleans will surprise with its European influence and unique culture, cuisine and, of course, round-the-clock nightlife. Thank you to EANS and WFNA for hosting and AANS looks forward to this April in the Big Easy.
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