Message from Rajiv Kalsi, ISPO Canada President
Welcome to this edition of the ISPO Canada Newsletter! As 2021 begins, many of us are looking forward to a new year and seeing an end to a year of unprecedented change as a result of the Covid 19 pandemic. The pandemic has exposed gaps in our health care system, especially for the elderly and people living with physical and mental disabilities, as well as people living in economically precarious situations. Professionally, we have all had to be more creative about how we deliver services to people who require prosthetic, orthotic, mobility and assistive technology. Like many people, I hope our society changes for the better once the pandemic has passed, and that we ensure that vulnerable people are better protected.
Looking back on 2020, ISPO Canada’s primary activity was the ISPO/OAPO AGM and education event held on October 24th. This event, in addition to The Ontario Association for Prosthetics and Orthotics (OAPO) AGM and our own AGM, included technical presentations, keynote presentations, and four student presentations. Despite an unfortunate hack into our meeting, we had 110 attendees during the educational sessions, and over 40 people who viewed the recorded presentations after the event. Feedback indicated that the presentations were well received. HirePower Inc., the company that facilitated the event on-line, spent many hours with our organizing group planning the event. HirePower had use of their Zoom business account, and despite taking security precautions advised by Zoom, the hack still occurred. HirePower has taken full responsibility for the interference, and has identified processes that will minimize the chances of a similar situation from recurring.
I would like to thank Ottobock, our Gold sponsor for the event, and Ossur, our keynote speaker sponsor. We value the continued support provided by sponsors to enable us to bring educational events to members and non-members.
As we look forward to 2021, I would remind everyone to renew their membership to ISPO. Your membership fees enable ISPO to continue its aim of improving the quality of life for persons who may benefit from prosthetic, orthotic, mobility and assistive devices, and to provide an effective platform for the exchange and communication on all aspects of the science, practice, and education associated with the provision of prosthetic and orthotic care, rehabilitation engineering, and related areas.
ISPO Canada was to be involved with ISPO Mexico and the U.S. ISPO member societies to host the 2021 World Congress in Guadalajara, Mexico. Unfortunately, due to the on-going pandemic, this in-person congress has been cancelled. In its place will be a fully virtual event. We will share information about this event as it evolves.
ISPO is committed to bringing the World Congress to Guadalajara in the future, at a time when it will be safe for everyone to travel, learn, and enjoy the unique Mexican culture. We will continue to work on this event to make it better than ever, and worth the wait. In the meantime, ISPO Mexico has developed a unique and informative webinar educational series with speakers from around the world. The webinars will be held on the last Friday of every month. Please register at the following link so you don’t miss any of these presentations.Find the link here.
Please reach out to me if you would like more information about our work, or if you wish to contribute to ISPO Canada at the board level.
President, ISPO Canada