The 19th ECCO IBD Intensive Course for Trainees 2021 (Virtual)
Konstantinos Karmiris, EduCom Member
Owing to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 19th ECCO IBD Intensive Course for Trainees will exceptionally take place in a virtual format on Friday, July 2, 2021 (one-day duration), one week prior to the start of the main ECCO Congress. The ECCO IBD Intensive Course for Trainees has become a tradition. It is the oldest educational initiative of ECCO, dating back to 2003, before the launch of the ECCO Congress, and is the cornerstone of the Education Committee’s activities.
I remember attending the 2nd Intensive Clinical Course for Residents, Fellows and Junior Faculty as an affiliated course during the 140th Falk Symposium, held in Dubrovnik, Croatia in 2004. This was perhaps the most comprehensive IBD course that I had ever attended as a trainee, and it inspired me to continue to engage in depth with IBD.
The aim of the ECCO IBD Intensive Course for Trainees is to offer an overview of up-to-date knowledge in certain IBD core curriculum areas of interest. Participants are advanced fellows from nearly 40 countries around the globe, the majority of them from Europe. The selection process is the responsibility of the National Representatives and participation is restricted to two or three trainees per country. The faculty have been carefully chosen not just for their expertise in the areas on which they are invited to speak, but also for their ability as educators.
The course is structured in different sessions. The first and second sessions include lectures by leading IBD experts on IBD epidemiology, pathogenesis, therapeutics and medication in the pipeline. Presentations are case based in order to better reflect everyday clinical practice and to stimulate interactivity. This year, a lecture on the status of available therapeutic IBD agents has been added to the course since there are currently several options in our armamentarium and careful selection of the most suitable therapy tailored to each patient is of the utmost importance.
Another important mission of the course is to promote social interaction among the participants with the expectation of fostering networking conducive to future scientific collaborations and also (why not?) participation in ECCO Initiatives and Working Groups. Thus, the third session normally consists of round tables in a cabaret style layout where, at each table, a faculty member discusses with eight participants an interesting IBD topic from among the following: pregnancy, extraintestinal manifestations, when and how to start biologics, complications associated with anti-TNF therapy, therapeutic drug monitoring, exit strategy and therapeutic endoscopy in IBD. Rotation among the tables offers all participants the opportunity to interact with the faculty group and gain knowledge from these specific situations. The virtual nature of this year’s course will require modification of the structure of this session.
Active participation of the trainees during the sessions is integral to the success of the course and this aspect will be facilitated by the relaxed and friendly atmosphere ensured by the organisers. A certificate of participation can be obtained at the end of the course, providing CME credits. We very much look forward to interacting with you at the 19th ECCO IBD Intensive Course for Trainees and to lively discussions on all of the course topics.