Manitoba Annual Travel Health Conference, April 20 & 21, 2017

On April 20 & 21, 2017 at the Viscount Gort Hotel, 102  health care providers attended the Manitoba 14th Annual Travel Health Conference hosted by the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority (WRHA) Travel Health & Tropical Medicine Services, in collaboration with Manitoba Health, Seniors & Active Living.

The theme of this year’s conference was “Travel: Risky Business”, incorporating our scientific presentations with our social program, whereby on Thursday evening, Will Gadd, a prominent  Canadian Ice Climber and Paraglider Pilot, highlighted his approach to risk taking under high intensity, extreme travel situations. This session was thoroughly enjoyed by all and kept us on the edge of our seats!

Jacquie Shackel, Travel Health Coordinator for WRHA Travel Health & Tropical Medicine Services, “navigated” the two-day “in-flight” experience as the “Captain of Flight 2017”, proposing “limited turbulence and no delays”, while Dr. Pierre Plourde, Medical Director for WRHA Travel Health & Tropical Medicine Services, moderated the presentations by introducing the various speakers and managing the Q & A component, while acting as the “co-pilot” of this journey. To actively encourage delegates back to their seats following breaks, entertaining and interactive questions about “Flights and Flying” were posed to the audience this year.

Clare Hargrave, newly hired Team Manager, for the Communicable Diseases, Immunization & Travel Health Programs with the WRHA, provided opening remarks for the conference this year.

Great networking opportunities took place as 87% of the conference attendees were from within the province of Manitoba, but we also had participants from as far east as Quebec, right to the west coast of British Columbia and as far north as Nunavut. Conference participants ranged from 40% being nurses, 21% pharmacists, 16% physicians, 4% nurse practitioners and 20% being of the “other” category, which mostly consisted of sponsors or individuals with no professional classification listed.

According to our evaluation forms, delegates ranged in professional classification, mainly working in the areas of Public Health and Travel Health, but also specializing in areas such as Pharmacy, Primary care, Family Practice and Occupational Health. Based on comments from the conference evaluation forms and verbal feedback that we received, our goal of providing a forum of information exchange among health professionals in the field of Travel Health was very much a success! Participants shared both positive feedback and valuable information to better assist us with planning for next year’s conference.

A total of 65 sponsors and supporters contributed their time and resources to make this year’s conference a success. We would like to offer a very special “Thank You” to our two conference “Gold Sponsors”, Pfizer Vaccines and Valneva Canada Inc., as well as our “Silver Sponsor” Sanofi Pasteur.  Their ongoing support to the efforts of our annual conference is remarkable!  We were pleased to host 9 exhibits, which were all well attended by the delegates during the break times.

Our Exhibitors included:

  • Education, Medical Aid and Service (EMAS) Canada
  • Global Medikit Inc.
  • International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers (IAMAT)
  • Manitoba Travel Health Network
  • Merck Canada
  • Munroe Pharmacy
  • Pfizer Vaccines – Gold Sponsor
  • Sanofi Pasteur – Silver Sponsor
  • Valneva Canada Inc. – Gold Sponsor

This year we are very proud to state that we once again, met the accreditation criteria for the following: .

  • College of Pharmacists of Manitoba: This program has been accredited for a maximum of  9.0 CEU by the College of Pharmacists of Manitoba for pharmacists in Manitoba. (CPhM File No. 17010M).
  • College of Family Physicians of Canada: This Group Learning program has been certified by the College of Family Physicians of Canada and the Manitoba Chapter for up to 9 Mainpro+ credits. (ID-185907)
  • Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada: This event is an Accredited Group Learning Activity (Section 1) as defined by the Maintenance of Certification Program of  The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, and approved by the CPD Medicine Program, University of Manitoba for a maximum of 9.0 hours. Participants should only claim credit for the actual number of hours attended. The University of Manitoba CPD Medicine Program is fully accredited by the Committee on Accreditation of Continuing Medical Education (CACME).
  • Attendance by Registered Nurses and Nurse Practitioners, may contribute to fulfillment of their continuing competence program self-development plan.

If you did not receive your proper certificate of attendance, please contact our conference secretariat, Crystal Shea at 204-940-8587 to make arrangements. 

There were a wide range of topics this year, mainly focusing on pre-travel preparation, which incorporated a broad scope of the ISTM Body of Knowledge.  Speakers were of national and provincial acclaim, with representation at a national level from the Committee to Advise on Tropical Medicine & Travel (CATMAT), the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), Global Affairs Canada and the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers (IAMAT).  We also had provincial representation from Manitoba Health, Seniors and Active Living (MHSAL) as well as regional speakers representing the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority and other private agencies.

We received a 53% response rate on the evaluation forms and based on these comments, participants rated the speaker presentations on a scale of 1 to 4, with 1 being “strongly disagree” and 4 being “strongly agree” in three areas:

Presentation was consistent with the stated objectives: ranged from 3.41 to 3.94, with an average of 3.71

Information was clearly presented: ranged from 3.35 to 3.88, with an average of 3.69

Presentation was balanced and unbiased: ranged from 3.41 to 3.88, with an average of 3.70

Provided information which will influence my practice: ranged from 2.92 to 3.82, with an average of 3.42

Invited speakers and their topics were as follows:

The conference organizing committee would like to once again thank everyone who helped make this conference a success!  A very special thank you is extended to Crystal Shea, conference secretariat, for another year of her dedicated efforts in ensuring all of the fine details in the conference planning were timely and efficiently taken care of.  It has been a pleasure working with you once again!  

The Manitoba 15th Annual Conference is planned for April 26 & 27, 2018, so mark your calendars now! Refer to this website sometime in January 2018 for further details.

Jacquie Shackel RN, BN
Conference Chair
Coordinator, WRHA Travel Health & Tropical Medicine Services
490 Hargrave Street
Winnipeg, MB     R3A 0X7
Phone: (204) 940-2538
Fax: (204) 940-8409




























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