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‘The early bird catches the worm’ as the saying goes, and for this Congress it meant that those who arrived early avoided travel disruption due to wintry weather. Long delays, closed airports and traffic accidents created difficulties for many attendees. However nearly everyone persevered, and on the last day the Chairman of the Scientific Committee Prof Dr Cees Neef was able to announce that over 3300 people had managed to attend, a number only slightly lower than last year's record.
The largest event for hospital pharmacists in Europe, the European Association of Hospital Pharmacists (EAHP)'s Annual Congress is now limited by its success to venues that can accommodate this popular gathering. The Palais des Congrès in Paris was one such excellent venue. In addition to the main programme and a large exhibition area, 16 industry-sponsored satellite seminars were accommodated. As the host country was France, delicious food was beautifully presented at break times.
The EAHP is as ever deeply grateful to its sponsors, Amgen, Bayer, and Pfizer and all other industry stakeholders. An educational grant from Amgen was used to hold the first Synergy satellite. ‘Biosimilars—do not look in the mirror’ was designed to deliver the highest quality of educational content. The main conclusion reached by Dr Hans Ebbers was that biosimilars have arrived! The EU biosimilarity exercise has demonstrated that products are highly similar and therapeutically equivalent. Thus far, no safety issues have arisen for biosimilars marketed in the EU; monoclonal antibodies will be the next challenge.
The excellent relations EAHP have built up with the industry mean that Association finances and the future of the Congress are secure, despite the economic slowdown. The fruits of continuing dialogue with other associations were also to be seen at this …
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