Dear Members & Colleagues,
Happy New Year! Thanks to our committed staff, boards and committees, our organization was able to not only survive, but thrive throughout the year. With several exciting new initiatives and milestones met, I am proud to lead World Sleep Society into another year.
In 2020, we launched two new initiatives—a virtual meeting and a public awareness magazine—both to a positive, receptive sleep community. World Sleep Virtual Meeting is an online congress with content being added from December 2020 through December 2021. As of December 11, we had 772 virtual attendees registered with the number expected to grow leading up to our next live sessions on February 18, 2021, June 24, 2021 and September 18, 2021. This virtual meeting is free to our members as both a thank you for member loyalty as well as a welcome to our new members.
We launched Healthier Sleep Magazine in Autumn 2020 to an equally responsive audience. Our first issue went to more than 17,000 individuals digitally and included 1,500 printed copies mailed. And with each issue, that number continues to grow. We are pleased to offer this bimonthly magazine as a complimentary benefit to the public and our community.
In addition to the new initiatives, the strategic reorganization of our upcoming World Sleep Congresses was unveiled. We announced that our previously-scheduled 2021 congress would be rescheduled for 2022 in Rome, Italy (March 11-16, 2022), followed by World Sleep 2023 in Rio de Janeiro in September 2023. The keynote speakers for this dynamic congress will be announced soon.
Several of our other programs provided sleep medicine and research education. After receiving applications to join the mentor/mentee training program, ISRTP, from half a dozen countries, nine applicants were selected for the new class. We also made strides in our guidelines for diagnosis and treatment in sleep medicine, including the completion and publication of three new guidelines in sleep.
With a positive new year on the horizon, please accept our thanks and appreciation for the dedication and support you share with World Sleep Society and the larger sleep medicine and research community. We look forward to a healthier, safer year ahead full of exciting opportunities.
Birgit Högl, MD
President, World Sleep Society