IFOMT 2008 Congress

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The International Federation Orthopaedic Manipulative Therapists (IFOMT) will be holding its 2008 Congress in Rotterdam, Netherlands from June 8 to 13, 2008 with Connecting “science” to Quality of Life as its theme.

IFOMT 2008: Connecting ‘Science’ to Quality of Life
Orthopaedic manipulative therapists are the primary healthcare workers in the field of neuro-musculoskeletal therapies and consequently have a primary role in improving their patients’ quality of life.

In Perth (2000) we looked to the “past, present and future” and constructed a solid foundation for the new millennium. We built upon this in Cape Town (2004) by summarising as much of the available scientific knowledge as possible in our chosen field of excellence.

We are familiar with how physical therapy has evolved over the last decades with dominance of one or another anatomic system over another. Now we are embracing both the bio-psychosocial treatment model as well as making sure we reason and treat in the desire of providing best practice, based on the evidence we have available.

There are three reasons we offer treatment to our patients. We believe our interventions, promote understanding, increase longevity, prevent future morbidity, or make patients feel better. But however much we may be treating signs and symptoms and trying to alleviate suffering and improve function, ultimately we are and should be aiming to improve the Quality of Life for our patients.

Quality of Life is a term we hear frequently these days. On the surface, it is simple enough to understand – when we talk about Quality of Life, we refer to how good life is. But when we delve a little deeper, we discover that it is not always a simple task to determine how ‘good’ life is. One particularly good definition is:

“An individuals sense of well-being and ability to perform various tasks”.

In recent years, many people have worked towards clarifying how we think about Quality of Life, and how we use it in our work and in our lives. Considerable progress has been made, but much work still needs to be done. Several authors have noted that Quality of Life, as a construct, is really still in its infancy.

As the conference theme for 2008 therefore we have chosen: Connecting ‘Science’ to Quality of Life.

And there are many connections to be made:

  • Connecting muscle to tendon to bone and the human being to the peripheral neuron
  • Connecting paradigms
  • Connecting the brain’s neural pathways
  • Connecting countries, cultures & hemispheres
  • Connecting people: the patient-therapist relationship
  • Connecting existing knowledge and research in Quality of Life with Manual Therapy
  • Connecting Manual Therapy to other useful treatment strategies and utilising a multi- modal approach to care
  • Connecting Evidence Based Practice with the Bio-Psychosocial Model
  • Connecting novel ideas to better practice
  • Connecting scientists to clinicians
  • Connecting different research directions for a fuller understanding of quality of life

There is considerable quality to be found both in our profession, in its practices as well as at the forthcoming congress: Quality time with colleagues and friends in the excellent surroundings of the congress venue of ‘De Doelen’ in the beautiful city of Rotterdam, quality in hotels, welcome receptions and social functions, and of course a range of high quality lectures both during the congress as well as in pre- and post conference courses.

We challenge colleagues to find as many ‘connections’ as possible and present papers to us in 2008. In this way we can extend our knowledge for the benefit of our profession and our patients in helping them to reach their true individual potential and improve their quality of life.

Erik Thoomes
Chairman, Congress Committee IFOMT 2008

Early Bird Fees end 1 March 2008. For more information on this congress, click here.

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