The 43rd European Dialysis and Transplant Nurses Association/European Renal Care Association (EDTNA/ERCA) International Conference was held in Riga, Latvia in September 2014 (see http://www.edtnaerca-conference2014.com/). This annual event brings together members of the renal healthcare team who strive to improve the care offered to people with renal disease and their carers. The conference is a place to share experiences and knowledge and is an event where rich learning occurs and collaborations are made. The EDTNA/ERCA is a multi-disciplinary organisation for those working in renal care and through the scientific programme of their annual conference offer a significant and valuable contribution to the care given to those referred to renal services.
In response to a call for abstracts to address the theme of the 2014 conference: `Patient-centred Renal Care – A Multidisciplinary Approach to Holistic Health` a significant 188 abstracts were accepted, including 116 poster presentations and 62 oral presentations. The conference agenda included 22 guest speakers invited by EDTNA/ERCA from 10 different countries worldwide. Other activities included Workshops, Masterclasses and Lunchtimes sessions. Service users participated in the conference and this year Ugnė Šakūnienė spoke on ‘The experience of patients with kidney disease in Lithuania’. Brian Gracey, Linda Gracey and Fiona Loud along with Dr Nicola Thomas ran a Masterclass titled ‘How patient involvement can improve quality of care’.
Workshops focused on topics including acute kidney injury, transplantation, dementia in kidney disease and enhancing a team’s performance through effective leadership practice. The programme also included Masterclasses concerned with user Involvement and shared decision making; the patient experience in relation to psychological care and cultural diversity; vascular access and the heart and hemodynamic and clinical relationships. Lunchtime sessions included: The Dialysis Outcomes and Practice Patterns Study (DOPPS) Programme, (see http://www.dopps.org/), Complex Case Management, Renal Education Accreditation and a National Presidents’ workshop. The conference was hugely successful and well evaluated but wouldn‘t be possible without Association volunteers, Industry partners and a skilled Secretariat. Together these partners ensured the whole event ran smoothly.
The 44th EDTNA/ERCA International Conference will take place in Dresden, Germany 26th – 29th September 2015. Quality and safety in renal care is the focus of this Conference where important exchanges of information and experience will again take place utilising the expertise of health care professionals, service leaders, academics, researchers, people with renal disease and industry partners who come together to share innovations and knowledge. Dresden is a beautiful place which has developed out of its history, tradition, art, architecture and culture . Hopefully you may want to avail yourselves of the opportunity to take in the unique atmosphere of this city whilst contributing to a forum which continually strives to improve care for those with renal disease and their carers.