More than 500 lectures represent all aspects of the veterinary profession
Animal diseases as well as their influence on human safety, pathogens that can infect animals and humans, legal requirements for the use of antibiotics to prevent resistance: The Leipzig Veterinary Congress including the vetexpo trade fair will propose from 13th to 15th January 2022 also a bridge between veterinary and human medicine. In an interview, Congress President Prof. Dr. Uwe Truyen from the Institute of Animal Hygiene and Public Veterinary Affairs of the University of Leipzig takes a look ahead at the highlights of the 11th Edition of this successful event and the special framework conditions.
Professor Truyen, the 11th Leipzig Veterinary Congress will take place as planned at the Leipzig Exhibition Center. What highlights can the industry expect?
Uwe Truyen: Above all, the Leipzig Veterinary Congress once again enables personal exchange between veterinarians, veterinary associations and also the vetexpo exhibitors. Despite rapid growth with the last 6,200 participants, this event has always retained its family character. The congress covers all aspects of the veterinary profession. Brand new is a symposium on translational animal experimentation as a link between human and veterinary medicine. The focus is also on zoonoses – i.e. infections caused by pathogens that can be transmitted to animals and humans – such as the coronavirus infection. So let’s take a look at the Sars-CoV-2 situation in humans and animals in Brazil – because viruses are rampant there, which is a hotspot for new mutations. Other topics in the program are animal diseases such as African swine fever spreading mainly in Saxony and Brandenburg, the long-running antibiotic resistance and related legal requirements, food safety and animal welfare as well as current topics and developments in clinical veterinary medicine in our pets.
Focus on digitization, soft skills and work-life balance
What is particularly moving the industry at the moment and how is this reflected in the congress program?
Truyen: Gaining an increasingly important role in everyday veterinary medicine – rightly – “soft skills” such as competent, empathetic communication with the owners of animal patients and not least the employees in the practices. In the program, this is taken into account with its own workshop and lectures in different topics. Another big topic is digitization, which is demanded by patient owners and veterinarians alike. How increasing digitization affects the veterinary profession is therefore not only the subject of the kick-off event. This problem is reflected, among other things, in the focus on “Digitization in Teaching” as well as in lecture series in the field of dogs and cats and ruminants.
What trends do you still observe in connection with the practice of your profession?
Truyen: A better work-life balance is demanded by many veterinarians. Lectures on the current situation and trends in veterinary practice as well as possibilities of implementation up to resilience training can therefore be found in several lectures and focal points, including, for example, in the Professional Policy Forum.
Application training and CAREER CORNER for young professionals
How are the special needs of students included in the congress program?
Truyen: The past events have shown that the regular lecture program is more attractive to students than formats offered specifically for them. The students are interested in many ways and are happy to accept both technical and professional policy topics. Nevertheless, some lectures such as “subject relevance and new requirements for VetMed studies” should meet with particular interest. In cooperation with Hardenberg Consulting, there is also the application training for students of veterinary medicine as well as the CAREER CORNER job fair.
More space in the congress
An expansion of space capacities was planned for the 11th Leipzig Veterinary Congress already announced. What does this mean in concrete terms?
Truyen: In 2022, we will again use the entire Congress Center Leipzig (CCL). In addition, the room capacity of the four halls integrated into exhibition halls 2 and 4 will be expanded from a total of 3,000 seats (2020) to almost 4,000 seats. Our largest lecture hall now holds 1,500 seats – instead of 1,000, as with the previous event two years ago. In parallel, the duration of the vetexpo trade fair will be extended from two to three days so far and thus to the entire congress duration. This not only expands room capacities, but also contributes to equalization of the event events in the sense of optimal hygiene management.
Keyword security: How will this congress differ from its predecessors?
Truyen: We strive to create the greatest possible secure framework conditions for the participants. Due to the current developments, which are also reflected in the new Saxon Corona Protection Ordinance, the Leipzig Veterinary Congress therefore takes place under 2G conditions. I am convinced that due to the high vaccination rate among students and veterinarians and the fact that until the start of the congress on the 13th January a complete vaccination is still possible, this rule is not considered a disproportionate restriction.
Over 500 lectures
Finally: Which sessions are you most looking forward to?
Truyen: I am always fascinated by the wide range of offers, which offers overwhelmingly many exciting topics with over 500 lectures. Due to my professional orientation, I am particularly interested in the sessions on infectious diseases and animal disease control. But I am particularly pleased that I meet young scientists who studied at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine or who were postdocs here and now work all over the world as renowned scientists as speakers.