What’s so good about DevelopingEM? An attendee’s perspective.

Blog Post By Nat Thurtle 


What’s so good about DevelopingEM?

I have been lucky enough to attend a variety of fantastic Emergency Medicine conferences over the time I have been an EM trainee. Conferences with cutting edge research, conferences utilising and explaining the exciting frontier of social media and open access, conferences where the thought leaders of emergency medicine and critical care deliver digestible pearls, conferences with opulent social programmes, conferences where the tea breaks have amazing new airway toys to play with while you drink your latte.

So what’s so good about this one?


It’s certainly not the shiniest. No airway toys, no free pens, not even a latte (don’t worry, there is always coffee!). No cabaret-esque introduction, dancing girls or ‘90’s rave approach to lighting. There’s never to my knowledge been an ICU consultant dressed up as a uterus at DEM either, a la the wonderful SMACC 2013…!


DEM is not as punchy as other conferences. Imagine every presentation being interpreted into another language in real time! This means a slow and measured approach to speaking, not using slang etc, busier slides with 2 languages on them, making information accessible to the many delegates who don’t speak English.

For me, its 3 things that make DEM great – the ethics, the true innovation and the heart.


DEM is really not for profit.

Nobody makes any money out of DEM. There’s a small team of organisers, most of whom work full-time as EM physicians, and give their time and expertise for free. There’s a broad international array of speakers who not only give their time for free, but most of whom pay full registration fees (to support sponsorship of local delegates) and cover all their own costs. These include speakers that really don’t need the gig, people like Judith Tintinalli, Joe Lex and Jerry Hoffman.

DEM is not compromised by industry sponsorship

DEM does not accept pharmaceutical industry sponsorship. In this age of deep controversy over industry influence on practice, this is a meaningful and important stand against this that no other international EM conference has been able to take, to my knowledge. No toys at tea break is a small price to pay.

DEM happens in countries where EM is developing

DEM recognises that people are practising EM outside of the US and Australasia! We were in Cuba in 2013, and now Brazil, bringing high calibre speakers to practitioners that would not otherwise have live access to them and building connections. #FOAMed is awesome, but if you only speak Portuguese, and work in a developing context, or in Cuba where there is essentially no internet, what is available or relevant to you is limited.


DEM recognises the ‘dirty’ side of medicine

Many conferences focus on the practice of medicine in an ideal fully equipped setting with the assumption that practice is scientific. For me, recognising and understanding the political and inexact nature of health care provision – inequality of access, inequality of standard of care and the undue influence of corporate needs on research and guidelines, as well as pragmatism in the face of limited evidence, limited expertise or limited resources and our own fallibility – is a critical part of being a real physician. DEM does not ignore these factors, despite them being complex and ‘dirty’. Bringing politics to an EM conference? To me this is brave and innovative.


DEM sponsors local delegates and has local speakers

DEM fully sponsored 65 local delegates from Cuba and other Caribbean nations last year, bringing local speakers to their own peers, and to an international audience, and will be doing the same in Brazil this year.


DEM does real-time interpretation

DEM does real-time bilingual interpretation of all presentations and question and answer sessions, making information truly accessible to delegates and allowing people to converse who would otherwise not be able to.


The Heart

What happens after DEM is cool.

Matt Dawson and Mike Mallin from the Ultrasound Podcast ran an ultrasound course in Castries, St. Lucia and Ricardo Hamilton and Mary Langcake (trauma surgeon from Sydney) ran the first fully accredited ATLS course in the Bahamas in the week after DEM 2013. The first ever Paediatric Intensive Care BASICs course in St Lucia was also organized following DEM 2013, to name but few follow-ons.

Delegate registration fees contributed to computers and USB drives loaded with #FOAMed resources, and EZIO kits that were donated to Cuba, St Lucia and the region after DEM 2013.

A letter signed by conference organisers and delegates was published in the BMJ calling for an end to the US-Cuba embargo in the name of access to health care, raising awareness in the medical community on this complex topic.


The social is awesome

Never got to bed before 2 or 3 in Havana – mojitos, cuba libres, music and Caribbean heat, similar minded folks to share stories and ideas with, hoping Brazil will be the same.


Lee and Mark

These two are brilliant. They are the heart of DEM and have my total confidence and respect.

So, that’s what I think is so good about DevelopingEM. Come and see for yourselves!!


Critical Travel Tips for Brazil 2014

Ok so we know you’re deep in the preparation stages for your upcoming trip to Brazil to join us for DevelopingEM 2014.
We’d just like to remind you of a couple of critical travel tips.
Delegates coming from Australia, the USA and Canada will require a tourist visa and the turnaround time for the processing of this document is around 3 weeks. Each country has their own automated web based process for visa application.
Here is a link for those situated in NSW, NT and QLD
and an example of US link is this site in Houston
Each jurisdiction will have their own website.
Delegates coming from New Zealand, Europe and Central and Southern America do not require a tourist visa.
Please check the situation for your own country of origin.
Yellow Fever Vaccination
For a number of countries including Australia there is a requirement of re-entry that documentary evidence of yellow fever vaccination be provided.
Please also check our travel advisory page for more information


It’s a packed social program for DevelopingEM 2014

Apart from taking in the amazing atmosphere of Brazil in the middle of the World Cup, Lee, Mark and Scott Cameron managed to find two incredible venues for our social functions for DevelopingEM 2014.
Scott is an emergency physician from Whangarei in New Zealand. Scott has a major Brazilian connection spending his formative high school years in Sao Paulo.
He’s been a crucial part of our organisational team for DevelopingEM 2014. During our week in Salvador in June Scott was critical to securing two amazing venues for the DevelopingEM 2014 Social Functions.
Our welcome reception on Monday 8th of September will be held in the gorgeous Pestano Convento do Carmo. This 16th century carmelite convent is a beautiful venue in the heart of the Historic Centre of Salvador (The Pelourinho) which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
With stunning architecture combined with period furniture and works of art we’re sure you will be blown away by the beauty of the venue.
Full registration ensures your attendance at this event.
Our conference dinner will be held at quite a different but very impressive venue, the Yacht Clube da Bahia. This suave waterfront restaurant, with its own mini Elevator Lacerda, is a truly beautiful venue. Overlooking the Bay of All Saints the restaurant gives you the feeling of being aboard a luxury liner. In contrast to the 16th century Convent the environment of the yacht club follows a contemporary style and the view of the Bay is the most generous possible.
Once again full registration ensures your attendance at our conference dinner.


DevelopingEM 2014 Faculty

GDay DevelopingEMers

Well we’ve told you a little about some of the components of our program headed by an amazing dynamic group of program leads.

Now for our amazing faculty.

Over the last two years we have had some incredible presenters and this year is no exception.

We have a number of presenters rejoining us from Havana including John MacKenzie, Joe Lex, Peter Viccellio, Marianne Gausche, and Camilo Gutierrez.

Joining this incredible group will be a truly fantastic cohort including some leading lights in their fields including Billy Mallon and Mary McCaskill as well as some incredible personalities from the field of Emergency Medicine in Brazil and around the world.

Come to Salvador and get some incredible education from this amazing group at DevelopingEM 2014.

DevelopingEM 2014 Faculty
Frederico Carlos De Sousa Arnaud (BRA)
Colin Banks (AUS)
Sue Beno (USA)
Jessica Best (USA)
Luis Alexandre Borges (BRA)
Anne Creaton (AUS / FIJI)
Anthony Crocco (CAN)
Carlos Fernando Dornelles (BRA)
Steffan Eriksson (AUS)
Sanj Fernando (AUS)
Ana Paula Da Rocha Freitas (BRA)
Pablo Fuenzalida (CHILE)
Marianne Gausche (USA)
Camilo Gutierrez (USA)
Jon Kerr (USA)
Charisse Kwan (CAN)
Joe Lex (USA)
Luis Lovato (USA)
John MacKenzie (AUS)
Mary McCaskill (AUS)
Fergal McCourt (AUS)
Billy Mallon (USA)
Regan Marsh (USA / HAITI)
Khaled Menapal (HOL / AFG)
Ravi Morchi (USA)
Michael Mullins (USA)
Oscar Navea (CHILE)
Rodrigo Brandao Neto (BRA)
Marcela Preto-Zamperlini (CAN)
Aurelio Rodriguez (CUB)
Paolo Silveira (BRA)
Paolo Sampaio (BRA)
Todd Slesinger (USA)
Carlos Trotta (ARG)
Joachim Unger (GER)
Peter Viccellio (USA)
Steve Wall (USA)
Janna Welch (USA)
David Wallace (USA)
Brian Wright (USA)

Tracy Catlin (USA)
Marcos Coelho (BRA)
Matt Dawson (USA)
Camilo Gutierrez (USA)
Saundra Jackson (USA)
Charisse Kwan (CAN)
Mike Mallin (USA)
Jorge Otero (USA)
Marcela Preto Zamperlini (CAN)
Gabriela Santos (USA / VEN)

Sponsorship Options to Assist with DevelopingEM 2014

GDay DevelopingEMers

One of the core principles of DevelopingEM which was demonstrated to great effect in Havana is our commitment to assisting our colleagues in the host country of our conference.

As you know local delegates have their attendance sponsored by the attendance of international delegates.

In Cuba your registrations supported the attendance of over 70 regional delegates.

In a similar fashion Brazilian and regional delegates will have their registration costs and, where possible, their travel and accommodation expenses supported by DevelopingEM which in effect is all of you.

In addition to your registration fees being redistributed in this manner you also have the option during the registration process to choose a number of different specific sponsorship options.

As well as being able to specifically sponsor the attendance of regional delegates you are also able to donate to the cost of the provision of accommodation for sponsored delegates, as well as attendance at the social functions.

In Cuba DevelopingEM also provided a number electronic resources, including computer workstations preloaded with critical care educational material and USB data storage devices.

Given the popularity of these donations we have decided to repeat the effort in Brazil by providing 1 TB Hard drives preloaded with educational material donated by our friends at the Ultrasound Podcast, the Intensive Care Network, Joe Lex and the Emergency Care Institute’s John MacKenzie, amongst others.

These devices will be distributed to critical care facilities around the region.


In addition we will also be giving each sponsored delegate their own USB storage device.

DevelopingEM 2014 Adult EM and Critical Care program

One of our standards with DevelopingEM has been a focus on Adult Emergency Medicine and Critical Care.

Over the last two years we’ve had some amazing presentations by some incredible presenters.

Following some positive feedback from our delegates we’ve quarantined two sessions for this topic.

Our session lead Brian Wright has collected together a group of fantastic presenters to put together a program that I think is our best ever.

Brian is an attending physician at the Stony Brook University Hospital where he is also a clinical assistant professor.

He has received several teaching and educational awards and as well as delivering one of our most appreciated lecture topics, ED:ICU Bridging the Gap, he has also brought together a truly incredible group of educators for the Adult EM and Critical Care track.

A number of our previous faculty including Joe Lex, Peter Viccellio and John MacKenzie will be joined by David Wallace, Billy Mallon, Todd Slesinger, Oscar Navea, Janna Welch, Jo Unger and Jon Kerr to deliver an unsurpassed program for you.

What a way to kick off DevelopingEM 2014 Brazil!

Register now to make sure you have a front row seat. We will have more news soon on the amazing program.

Is DevelopingEM 2014 an accredited emergency medicine conference?

GDay DevelopingEMers.

Once again DevelopingEM will have accreditation with two Australasian colleges, the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM) and the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine (ACRRM).

We also have the support of the Australasian Society for Emergency Medicine (ASEM) and are endorsed by the International Federation for Emergency Medicine (IFEM).

For our delegates from the USA attendees can apply for CME points through the self accreditation processes with AAEM or ACEP. UK delegates can similarly apply to the College of Emergency Medicine for CPD points through self accreditation.

For our Canadian attendees DevelopingEM is considered a recognized physician organization and as such activities can be reported under section 1 of the MOC Program of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada.

In Europe one can apply for CME with individual national colleges after the conference with the attendance certificate and program.

We want the DevelopingEM experience to be useful at the time of the conference and afterwards and would be happy to enquire further regarding accreditation with your national college if you require that service.