Society for Clinical Vascular Surgery
2006 Annual Symposium: President's Message

 Message from the President,

SCVS continues to adapt to meet the changing educational needs of the vascular surgery community. For over thirty years, our annual symposium has been the centerpiece of our educational activities. The mission of the Society is to provide a forum for surgeons to update their skills in the fast-changing environment of vascular surgery, share current clinical research, and have the opportunity to learn about new techniques and technologies as presented by world-class experts and device manufacturers. This year again, under the leadership of Dr. Robert McLafferty and the Program Committee, we are preparing an excellent program incorporating suggestions made in the evaluation forms of prior meetings.

Due to the hard work and efforts of our past presidents, executive councils, and program committees, the quality of the annual symposium has been on an upward trend, to a point that it now rivals any national vascular meeting.  It is our aim in 2006 to provide programming that will meet the needs of vascular surgeons practicing in a variety of settings and range of experience.

This year we are introducing two additional presentation formats; short abstracts and video presentations, enabling a better match between content and presentation. The highly attended skills workshops will again be offered.  We are again having a well-structured poster presentation session organized by Dr. Tom Bower; last year the poster session was rated as very successful in evaluations completed by attendees.

This Society was originally organized by community vascular surgeons to meet and exchange ideas that would better vascular surgical care.  Over the years, the involvement and attendance of community vascular surgeons in the annual symposium have been diminishing.  In an attempt to reverse this trend, we are targeting the needs of those surgeons by establishing an interest group headed up by Dr. Alan Dietzek.  It is our hope that we can reenergize this sector of our membership and bring them back to participate in our meeting.  Attendees are invited to bring X-rays of your tough/unique cases for analysis and discussion by experts in the field.  Also, we are including sessions of particular interest to community vascular surgeons, organized by Dr. Keith Calligaro, namely a practical session on carotid angioplasty and stenting and another on how to incorporate venous disease management in the vascular surgeon's practice to improve the bottom line.

Dr. JoAnn Lohr will again moderate the Women's Issues interest group targeting the professional needs of women vascular surgeons.  Although over 50% of graduating medical students are women, very few are entering our field.  Why are so few women choosing vascular surgery? What changes in private practice and hospital settings could improve recruitment of new talent and improve retention of women practicing our specialty? These issues are important to program directors and surgical department chiefs as well as the women seeking to practice vascular surgery.

Realizing the importance of young vascular surgeons to the future of our specialty, we have created the Young Vascular Surgeons interest group, chaired by Dr. Anil Hingorani.  This group will explore the needs of young vascular surgeons and identify ways to improve their involvement in the functions of our society.

We will again have the Vascular Fellows' meeting preceding the main program. We will also be incorporating the fellows in the functions of the main meeting by assigning them presentations to discuss.  I ask the Fellows and their Program Directors to plan to attend this meeting; it is going be extremely valuable to the Fellows as they are planning to enter practice.

Although the program for the 2006 Annual Symposium is packed with interesting and clinically relevant topics and presentations, we are leaving enough time for attendees to enjoy Las Vegas with their families and for the golfers among us to enjoy their favorite past-time, a hallmark of our meeting since the Society's inception.  As you know, Las Vegas has become a very popular destination for conventions and meetings; it is a fun place for the whole family.  The venue, the Four Seasons' Hotel, is quite elegant; we had one of our most successful meetings when we last went there four years ago.  The Program Committee received a record 220 abstracts to choose from this year; we are predicting a program with an usually high number of outstanding presentations. This is an excellent way to start this meeting.

I encourage you to mark your calendar now for SCVS 2006, March 8-11 at the Four Seasons, Las Vegas. I look forward to seeing you there and meeting your families!

Best regards,

Anton N. Sidawy, M.D.
President, 2006

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