It is custom for the Council of The Transplantation Society to meet in person at least once every year. One of these is always organized to coincide with the biennial congress and the other is organized as a retreat in the alternate years. This year the retreat was organized immediately prior to the 1st Regional Meeting of TTS in Istanbul on March 28-29, 2019.
A full day was reserved for the retreat, which was attended by the Society Officers, Councilors and committee Chairs. The object of the meeting was to formulate and discuss various topics of importance in the future of TTS, including solidifying and embellishing our relationship with our Sections, and expanding our reach and global responsibilities through affiliations with regional and national societies. It has also become clear over the past years that each region represented within TTS should receive equal attention from the Society and equal opportunities to organize meetings and ensure access to educational materials. Locations of past congresses had not always been selected with this in mind, which has resulted in a highly unbalanced distribution of congresses among the regions. In order to ensure equality among the regions in the future, the council agreed that a fixed rotation could be applied, with the 2024 Congress to be organized in the Middle East/Africa Region for the first time in TTS history
In line with these goals, TTS has established 3 new country/region-specific relations committees for China, India and Africa. Their mission is to create lines of communication and establish and maintain relations with the transplant communities in these countries and with their ministries of health to assist in developing transplantation where the need exists and implementing ethical transplant activities based on international guidelines.
In our efforts to support the development of ethical and legal transplant activities around the world, in December 2018 we distributed a memo entitled, “Call for an End to Unethical Transplant Practices: A Concerted Effort by the Transplant Community,” to our membership to remind them of the importance of adhering to the guidelines for ethical transplantation and to request that the transplant community to take a firm stance against unlawful and unethical activities. This was distributed in the weekly Tribune Pulse and published in the April issue of the Transplantation Journal.
Perhaps the most important issue on the agenda was the overview of the strategic plan and what the focus of TTS should be over the coming 5 years. In line with our Society’s mission and vision, we will concentrate on the following 4 areas:
It is also my great pleasure to inform you that following the deliberations of the WHO at its 144th session in January 2019, the WHO Executive Board decided to maintain The Transplantation Society in official relations with the WHO for another term, until January 2022. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have been involved in and supported our work with WHO.
In the meantime, organizations for the TTS 2020 Congress are continuing and the scientific program has begun to take shape. We look forward to welcoming all our members to Seoul for what we hope will be a highly successful congress.