I hope that everyone has had an opportunity to enjoy the summer, and spend some time with family and friends. Your CHSS Program Committee has been working very hard these past few months, assembling an incredible meeting. We have a strong list of featured speakers, high-quality abstracts, videos, and poster presentations. The Program Committee met face to face in Chicago at the end of June, finalizing our full program which is now available on our website at www.chss.org. The abstracts can be accessed by clicking on the title of the presentation. As a reminder, this year's meeting will be held at the Loews Chicago O'Hare Hotel on October 21-22, 2018.
The meeting this year will begin at 1 pm on Sunday (new start time!), with a Basic Science/Mitral Session. This will be followed by an NPC-QIC update from Jeffrey Anderson; a Clinical Presentations Session; and then a fascinating talk by Matthew Bramlet entitled "Virtual Reality: Inspection Before the Operation (Goodbye 3D Printing!)." Sunday continues with our always-popular video session, followed by the traditional pizza dinner and poster session. We close the evening with another "My Worst Nightmare Cases" program, brought back by acclaim and popular demand after its success last year.
Monday will start with more clinical case presentations, including the John Hawkins' Top-scoring Abstract Award. The Keynote Lecture by Winfield Wells is entitled "Perspectives on Medical Liability," and is followed by our CHSS Data Center report. The morning session concludes with my Presidential Address. After lunch we begin with our CHSS Member Business Meeting, then George Sarris (President of ECHSA) presents "The European Clinical Guidelines for TGA," followed by an update on the STS Congenital Heart Surgery Database by Jeff Jacobs. We will conclude with a final clinical presentation session and our Best Resident Paper and Best Poster Awards.
We are again delighted this year to offer ancillary programming for our Coordinators; that program is currently being finalized and details will be posted on our website soon. Once again, we will also have a front-end program by the NPC-QIC Community Conference, which begins on Saturday, October 20th, also at the Loews. Their program outline is included via link on our website for your convenience.
We are now halfway into our first year of an "official journal" affiliation with the World Journal for Pediatric and Congenital Heart Surgery. I urge you and your colleagues to support this great journal by submitting your best work. Papers to be presented at the annual meeting will be given an expedited review. As a reminder, all CHSS members receive free digital access to the World Journal.
It is also not too late to make your 2018 contribution to the Kirklin-Ashburn fellowship fund. Please join your fellow CHSS members who wear the CHSS pin, which reflects a $10,000 total commitment to the fund and our Society. We will have pins onsite and anyone who has pledged or contributed this amount should pick one up at our registration desk in Chicago.
We urge you to register early for this year's meeting, and as a reminder, we have a dedicated block of rooms at the Loews. Housing, registration and program information is all available on our website.
We will have more societal information in my Fall Message – but for now, wishing you and yours the very best for the remainder of the summer.
Carl L. Backer, MD