The 11th ICORD meeting took place in Cape Town, South Africa, on October 19-22. It was a successful event that attracted 200 attendees from 27 countries, representing all stakeholders within the rare disease field. The meeting provided time and place for open discussions, presented enhanced best practice models on rare diseases care and orphan drugs and fostered a real exchange with specialists.
IPOPI Vice Chair, Martine Pergent, was part of the Organising Committee of the 11th annual ICORD (International Conference on Rare Diseases & Orphan Drugs) meeting and represented the Primary Immunodeficiencies (PID) community.
The ICORD conference offered a wide range of sessions with exceptional speakers on diagnostics, congenital malformations, access to treatment, global Rare Diseases policies and programmes, research, quality of life and empowerment of patient support groups. Participants also had the opportunity to network in smaller discussion groups and in a posters’ session. This was the first time an African country hosted the ICORD meeting. It was a great opportunity to get the African continent involved in rare diseases care advances, providing the ideal platform for developing world engagement on the subject.
PIDs at the ICORD meeting
PIDs were part of the programme, as two prominent PID physicians from Africa were involved on behalf of IPOPI. Dr Monika Esser, Stellenbosch University, Cape Town, gave a lecture on Diagnosis for Primary Immunodeficiency by accessing available resources in South Africa. Dr Esser also chaired a session dedicated on quality of life.
Dr James Chipetta, University of Zambia school of medicine, and current chair of ASID, did a presentation on the Spectrum of congenital anomalies among newborns from selected Sub-Saharan African tertiary hospitals: focus on Zambia. He also chaired a session on Diagnosis. Many thanks to both of them for their friendly and active presence!
PINSA, IPOPI’s South African National Member Organisation (NMO) , was also in attendance with a nice and well attended exhibition booth. Joy Rosario, Annie Piennar and other volunteers distributed PINSA materials in a welcoming atmosphere making it a nice place for networking.