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AGA expands foreign-language programming for international attendees

About 15,000 GI professionals attend DDW® each year and about half of those attendees come from outside the U.S.

With that in mind, AGA has organized several sessions for international attendees, including summary presentations from the recent United European Gastroenterology (UEG) Week, as well as sessions in Spanish and Mandarin. For the non-English language sessions, experts pore over abstracts and research presentations at DDW, and then present selected highlights to attendees in their primary language.

Xavier Llor, MD, PhD
Xavier Llor, MD, PhD

“We select the experts and let them run with what they think is going to be the most important information for the audience,” said Xavier Llor, MD, PhD, associate professor of medicine, medical director of the colorectal cancer prevention program and co-director of the cancer genetics and prevention program at Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT. “We want a focus on patient care covering the breadth of what will be covered in the entire meeting, from Barrett’s esophagus to inflammatory bowel disease to liver disease to endoscopy. We leave the topics up to the presenters.”

On Tuesday, Dr. Llor will chair one of AGA’s oldest and most popular international sessions, Lo Mejor de DDW, in Spanish. A similar Mandarin session, Best of AGA at DDW in Chinese, will be held Monday. The sessions are ideal for attendees who are more comfortable learning in Spanish or Mandarin, or simply want to network with colleagues from around the world who share the same language.

John Y. Kao, MD, AGAF
John Y. Kao, MD, AGAF

“We have a growing number of attendees from China, but many do not come to the scientific sessions,” said John Y. Kao, MD, AGAF, associate professor of medicine at the University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor, who will co-chair the Chinese session.

“The common theme we hear is that most senior clinicians from China would prefer to listen to sessions in their native language,” Dr. Kao continued. “The obvious solution is to provide content in Mandarin. We want to encourage their participation at this and future DDW meetings to improve their learning experience, thus enabling them to share current information with their colleagues back home.”

Working with the Chinese Society of Gastroenterology, Dr. Kao identified Mandarin-speaking presenters who specialize in esophageal and gastric disorders, liver, IBD and colon cancer. Each presenter will discuss the latest clinical developments in their specialty area.

“These are hot clinical topics everywhere, but interest is particularly high in China because of increased disease prevalence,” Dr. Kao said. “This session also offers an opportunity to network with U.S. colleagues in their areas of specialty.”

In another Monday session, Best of UEG Week at DDW, attendees will get a glimpse of the top presentations from UEG Week, held last October in Vienna, Austria. AGA will offer a similar Best of AGA at DDW session in October at UEG Week 2017 in Barcelona, Spain.

Sunday’s AGA/UEG Rising Scholars session, Advances in Research, a Multitopic Discussion, featured presentations by award-winning young scholars representing the two associations. The awardees included 2016 UEG Rising Star Pavel Strnad, MD, of University Hospital RWTH in Aachen, Germany; and AGA Research Scholars Christina A. Twyman-Saint Victor, MD, of the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine, Philadelphia; and Barham K. Abu Dayyeh, MD, of the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN.

Another highlight on Sunday is the AGA Committee Sponsored Symposium East-Meets-West Microbiome sponsored by the AGA International Committee and the AGA Institute Council Immunology, Microbiology and Inflammatory Bowel Diseases Section. Four expert presenters will examine the role of the gut microbiota in health and immune-mediated diseases, and evaluate Asian countries with their Western counterparts.

Please refer to the DDW Mobile App or the Program sections in the Monday and Tuesday issues of DDW Daily News for the time and location of this and other DDW events.

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