The International Federation for Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus (IF) together with the Associazione Spina Bifida Italia (ASBI) have the pleasure to invite you to the 26th International Conference on Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus: Equality. The conference will be held from Friday 16 October to Sunday 18 October 2015 at the Conference Center of Hotel Le Robinie in Solbiate Olona (Milan), Italy.
The conference aims to bring together people with Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, their families, healthcare professionals, service providers, researchers, policy makers and other interested parties.
The Equality conference will feature scientific lectures on Prevention and the Right to Health and includes workshops, held in parallel with the plenary sessions. Highly respected researchers and clinicians from all over the world will provide expert knowledge and share the latest developments in the areas of prevention and quality of care with regard to Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus, among them IF Global Experts Panel members Benjamin Warf, David Morrissey, Amy McPherson, Richard Finnell and Anne Molloy, as well as Adam Shumyle, Roland Devlieger, Helen Dolk, Domenica Taruscio and many others.
On Sunday, IF’s 2nd EU Workshop will take place, which will be open to all conference participants. The workshop will build on IF’s EU Workshop in Vilnius and aims to strengthen IF’s member associations through sharing successful initiatives and by interactive discussions. Participants will be given tools and information to help influence policy makers. Simultaneously ASBI offers a Workshop on Cure and Care for Italian professionals in the field of SB/H, comparing “What we wish and What we do”. The purpose of the workshop is to develop national guidelines.
About the conference
The main issue today are the huge inequalities that still exist between people without disabilities and people with disabilities in various aspects of life; between families with a child with Spina Bifida and/or Hydrocephalus (SBH) or families without a child with SBH; between for example a person with a spinal cord injury and the access they have to care and services, and a person born with SBH. Inequalities also exist between women of childbearing age in the risk of their baby developing a neural tube defect, either through lack of information, lack of access to folic acid supplements, lack of access to foods fortified with folic acid, and/or lack of access to preconception care.
It is our duty to work on reducing those inequalities. Therefore, IF has chosen Prevention, the Right to Health and Community building as its 3 strategic objectives for the next 3 years. The quality of primary prevention measures and research into the causes of SBH need to be improved. The quality of food plays in important role in general and with regard to reproductive health. Quality and standards of care and services are also crucial issues. The quality of healthcare people receive is the determining factor of their ability to enjoy all other human rights equal to others. The quality of the associations is essential for their lobbying with policy makers, their campaigning, cooperation with specialists, and the provision of information and services to their members and the general public.
Since its inaugural meeting in 1979, one of IF's milestones is its International Conference on Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus. The conference was held biennial until 1997, after which it became a yearly event. The purpose of the conference is offering everyone with an interest in Spina Bifida and Hydrocephalus the opportunity to meet each other for the exchange of knowledge and sharing of experiences.
Click here to view the Equality programme.