Congress Programme Committee meets to plan exciting programme for 2019

The WCPT Congress Programme Committee has met in London to start to shape the scientific programme for Geneva.

The committee of 10 physical therapists, representing the breadth and diversity of the profession, held its first face-to-face meeting in London to reflect on the many lessons learnt from holding successful congresses and bring creative and innovative thinking to planning the next one.

Their work is based on an extensive selection of surveys, evaluations and suggestions from previous events, as well as market research and horizon scanning for the future, drawing on existing networks, experienced opinions and feedback from across the profession.

“Planning a WCPT Congress is a careful consideration of broad areas relevant to physical therapy,” says Charlotte Häger, the committee chair, who has attended every WCPT Congress since 1991.

“It also includes emerging fields, and trends in health and diseases in relation to global challenges. The discussions have been very lively and full of enthusiasm.”

As well as recognising the importance of focusing on interaction, clinical relevance and knowledge implementation to deliver value for delegates attending Congress, the committee explored options for facilitating content and networking in a range of different languages.

A record 103 focused symposium submissions have been submitted, indicating that the 2019 Congress is off to a flying start with high quality content of relevance to the whole global physical therapy community. The call for abstracts opens in May, while Congress registration opens in July.

“We already have in place a very strong and efficient congress planning effort, offering themes providing both variety and depth,” says Häger. “Many delegates also point out that we should not change anything just for the sake of it. We aim to continue to build on quality in content and delivery.”

While the scientific content is the focus for the Congress Programme Committee, they also know that the whole congress planning team will deliver an amazing experience.

“Highlights abound when reflecting on WCPT Congresses, particularly around opening ceremonies,” says committee member Shane Patman. “In Cape Town, the opening ceremony with African drums, batons and resounding ‘Yes!’ from the audience still brings a sense of joy.”

The WCPT Congress takes place in Geneva, Switzerland, 10-13 May 2019. The call for abstracts opens in May this year, and the committee welcomes suggestions and ideas emailed to

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