Top cardiac electrophysiology congresses join forces

Nice, 13 June 2012: Europe's leading congresses in cardiac electrophysiology have agreed to hold a joint annual Congress during 2014-2017. The official agreement was signed by ESC-EHRA and CARDIOSTIM-REED on 13 June, during CARDIOSTIM 2012 in Nice, France, 13-16 June.

CARDIOSTIM is an international scientific congress in the field of electrophysiology and cardiac techniques. It is owned by Reed Exhibitions, subsidiary of Reed-Elsevier, and held every even numbered year in Nice since 1978.

The European Heart Rhythm Association (EHRA) is a registered branch of the (ESC). Its official meeting, EHRA EUROPACE, is an international conference on cardiac arrhythmias and takes place every odd numbered year in different member countries of the ESC.

Since 2006 EHRA and CARDIOSTIM have had an agreement to hold their respective congresses in alternating years and collaborate on the scientific programme. Under this new agreement, a joint Congress will now be held each year in June.

The of both organisations is to continue to hold a high quality scientific Congress that attracts the most eminent scientific specialists worldwide, reports on the latest news in the field, and provides top notch training to cardiology professionals.

While ESC-EHRA and CARDIOSTIM-REED will maintain their commercial and corporate independence, they have set up a joint Scientific Committee which will be responsible for establishing the scientific programme of the annual Congress. It will be led by two co-chairpersons, one from each organisation.

In 2014 and 2016 the Congress will be called CARDIOSTIM-EHRA EUROPACE. It will be organised by CARDIOSTIM-REED and the Scientific Committee will be run by the CARDIOSTIM-REED appointed Chairman.

In 2015 and 2017 the Congress will be called EHRA EUROPACE-CARDIOSTIM and will be organised by ESC-EHRA. In those years the Scientific Committee will be run by the ESC-EHRA appointed Chairman.

The Programme will be built around four main topics: electrophysiology (EP) and catheter ablation, devices, non-invasive EP and basic science. Every year the Congress abstracts will be published in EP-Europace — The European Journal of Pacing, Arrhythmias and , the official journal of EHRA, the ESC Working Group on Cardiac Cellular Electrophysiology, and the ESC Working Group on e-Cardiology.

"The scientific quality of the Congress programme is guaranteed through this contract and we avoid any conflict between the main European arrhythmias communities," says Professor Panos Vardas, ESC president elect and EHRA past president. "The industry is happy with this decision because it likes to have one well organised annual electrophysiology conference in Europe. This avoids difficult dilemmas in having to choose between CARDIOSTIM and EHRA EUROPACE."

Professor Angelo Auricchio, president of EHRA, says: "Having one will ensure the quality and also the high level of the scientific content. This is a great opportunity for the European electrophysiology community to have a large annual meeting. The will also be the annual event for the international electrophysiology community to learn about the scientific activity in Europe."

He adds: "For EHRA it's a unique opportunity to meet its own members every year and to disseminate information about the importance of diagnosing and improving treatment for patients with ."

Dr Philippe Ritter, as Cardiostim Chairman, says: "The combination of the scientific programme committees into a single entity will lead to an unrivalled educational offering. I am proud, as Chairman of Cardiostim, to have contributed to this significant understanding for which the European EP community has been waiting so long."

Michel Filzi, Reed General Manager, adds: "Our belief, as Cardiostim organiser, is that we are stronger together than apart. When shaping this agreement, we always kept in mind the interests of two stakeholders: the scientific community, who will benefit from the best of our two current congresses, and the industry which will still be assured of an efficient and adequate international meeting. As Cardiostim 2012 opens, we would like to stress, once more, the importance of sharing information and best practices on a really global scale, which is the essence of leading medical congresses."

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