We've Launched The Science of Healthcare Congresses white paper

By Ashfield Meetings & Events

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We are pleased to announce the official launch today of our latest white paper – The Science of Healthcare Congresses.

This is a unique study of over 200 healthcare professionals (HCPs), from both Europe and the US, across a range of therapy areas. It highlights HCP preferences and shares perceptive experiences of medical congresses – from their decision-making regarding attendance, how they value this type of activity, how they apportion their time on-site and engage with the healthcare industry, concluding with their post-congress evaluation.

This is our third HCP survey in three years, and follows the well-received insights of our previous white papers, The Future of Meetings (2016) and The Science of Healthcare Professional Meetings (2018).

Explaining the background to The Science of Healthcare Congresses, Head of Compliance, Andrew Moore, says, “Our two previous white papers unequivocally identified that face-to-face meetings and events form a major part of HCPs’ continued medical education, and what was abundantly clear was that national and international congresses are of significant importance – both featuring in their top four preferred meeting types. But why is this? What is it that makes congresses such a valuable education channel to time-restricted physicians? As a business that provides congress support services for many of the world’s leading healthcare organisations, we were keen to discover how HCPs themselves would like to see congresses evolving to better-meet their needs.”

Through our work with a broad range of healthcare businesses – from start-up biotechs to large global healthcare companies – we appreciated that there are many differing congress strategies adopted by these organizations. Yet there are common industry congress considerations and discussion points, and it’s these that we set out to explore.

Our US Director of Client Services, Katie Koziol, adds, “Our research has been genuinely fascinating, and we’ve learned a huge amount about how healthcare professionals view the whole congress experience as part of their medical learning journey. For example, we established which congresses HCPs value and why, their view on virtual attendance, accessing scientific content and just how much they value the exhibit hall.”

Indeed, our white paper indicates that 91% of physicians said the exhibit hall was an important part of their congress experience, ranking it as the most effective element of a congress for networking. And, 88% of physicians advised that they would question why a leading healthcare company might not have a presence in the exhibit hall.

“These particular findings around exhibits, seem to validate that ‘fear of missing out’ reason many healthcare companies have when it comes to investing in congresses. Healthcare professionals highly value effective exhibition stands as a key part of their medical education and it was interesting to discover that they would question if a particular brand or product didn’t have a presence,” says Andrew Moore. “It’s these sort of learnings that will be invaluable for healthcare companies’ congress strategies, and our white paper really goes into the detail on all these elements.”

Katie Koziol adds, “This important research focuses on the complex wants and needs of today’s healthcare professionals. I’m sure our findings will hugely benefit not only physicians, healthcare businesses and associations, but ultimately, of course, patients themselves.”

The Science of Healthcare Congresses is now available – download the white paper using the form below.