Improving global prehospital and emergency health care, public health, and disaster health and preparedness

Toronto, Canada – 2017

This year’s Congress will be WADEM’s 20th biennial meeting of global experts to exchange knowledge and best practices on prehospital and in-hospital emergency medical care, disaster health and response, and emergency public health and safety. Co-hosted by the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and the CBRNE Collaborative, the Congress will take place from 25-28 April 2017 in the vibrant city of Toronto, Canada.

The WADEM Congress is one of the largest inter-professional gatherings worldwide with delegates from over 50 countries in addition to representation from organizations such as World Health Organization, International Red Cross/Crescent, Médecins Sans Frontières, and more.

Congress Program-at-a-Glance & Daily Schedule Available!

The Congress Program-at-a-Glance and daily schedules can be accessed by clicking below.

Please note that the schedule is subject to change.

View the Program-at-a-Glance

25 April 26 April 27 April 28 April

Featured Congress Sessions

The Congress will feature more than 600 abstract presentations (oral and poster) covering more than 20 thematic areas. Additionally, there are more than 40 non-abstract activities, two pre-Congress Courses (AHLS and POCUS), and one post-Congress research workshop.

Pediatric Disaster Medicine Around the World
Thursday, 27 April
Bay Room

Children are often the most visible victims of natural or manmade disasters. Despite their prominence in disaster imagery and awareness, academic work and policy often fail to address children’s vulnerabilities or unique healthcare needs.

The purpose of this moderated plenary is to see how different regions around the world care for children while preparing for, mitigating, responding to, and recovering from disasters.

This unique opportunity to hear from leading experts in the field of pediatric disaster preparedness is not to be missed!

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Confirmed Moderators:

  • Dr. Tudor Codreanu; Senior Medical Practitioner Emergency Medicine, Visiting Professor Disaster Medicine, South West Health Campus, West Australia;
  • Dr. Elene Khalil; Montreal Children’s Hospital of the McGill University Health Centre and a member of CEEP – The Centre for Excellence in Emergency Preparedness;
  • Prof. Bar-On Elhanan; Sackler Medical School – Tel Aviv University, Head of Pediatric Orthopedics in Schneider Children’s Medical Center, Israel.

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Canadian Red Cross: From Syria to Canada
Tuesday, 25 April
Metropolitan West

The physical and mental health and dignity of people affected by crises must be at the centre of global refugee response.This plenary will convene to advance learning in service coordination and delivery to populations facing forced displacement. The panel will explore the Canadian Red Cross (CRC) engagement with Syrian populations in five countries and on a Mediterranean service ship along the continuum-of-care from Syria to Canada.

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Data arising from CRC end of mission (EOM) reports (n=8) and CRC Syria Response Evaluation will be discussed, further enriched by the operational experiences of deployed technical personnel and front-line service providers in Canada.

A Syrian who journeyed from Syria to Canada will outline his/her recommendations for improving service coordination and delivery from the perspective of a service-user.

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Wisdom of the Crowd
Tuesday, 25 April
Metropolitan East

This plenary will present evidence base (by numbers) of the low efficacy in saving lives by the Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) teams. In recent large scale earthquakes, the number of survivors rescued by USAR teams was alarmingly low. The reason for this disappointing outcome is not the quality of the USAR teams. A new paradigm that may increase the rate of survival needs to be established, focusing on utilization of the “Wisdom of the Crowd.”

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The logic and potential value in training the population as immediate basic rescuers, the content of the light rescue training program, its influence on the preparedness of the population, and its potential impact on saving lives during earthquakes or other disasters will be presented.

Confirmed Moderator:

  • Professor Kobi Peleg; Head of the Israeli National Center for Trauma and Emergency Medicine Research in the Gertner Institute.

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Debate: Overcoming Hurdles to Implement an Evidence-Based Approach
12:00-13:00, Tuesday, 25 April
13:00-14:00, Wednesday & Thursday, 26 & 27 April
Metropolitan Centre

The debates will take place over three days and all will share the same Chair, Claire Allen. The debates will build on each other but also can be stand-alone. There will be a 15-minute presentation each day by a key speaker, list of speakers to be confirmed, followed by questions from the Chair to promote what is hoped will be lively audience participation debate.

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Evidence Aid will take notes in order to publish a commentary report of the event afterwards. On each day, the Chair will pose critical questions to the speaker at the end of his/her presentation to lead the audience into the debate.

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Activities of the Pharmacy Workforce in an Emergency: From Chaos to Vision
Thursday, 27 April
Queens Quay

This session will present work done thus far on the roles of pharmacy team members in response to disasters and emergency situations. Through the work done identifying these roles, it quickly became apparent that there is a lack of globally recognized training opportunities to prepare pharmacists and other pharmacy team members for disasters and emergency situations.

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This is true not only for smaller organizations that do not have the resources or expertise to provide their own training, but also for larger organizations which have to spend considerable resources to train their pharmacists. The goal of session is to begin to develop a competency framework, in collaboration with other international organizations, which will be based on the core tasks that will have been identified.

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