Dear colleagues
As we put the finishing touches to our meeting preparations for Ljubljana, finalise a great programme for our first meeting in South Asia, and confirm plans for our first Ibero-American primary care respiratory conference and 9th World Conference,  we thought we should give you a reminder of all that’s happening!  We look forward to meeting as many of you as possible over the next few months:
24 March saw the first stage in our new Global Bridges Treating Tobacco Dependence education programme, with an expert faculty teaching 5 primary care teachers from each of Bulgaria, FYR Macedonia, Romania and Kyrgyz Republic. 
2 May World Asthma Day – saw the launch of a campaign supported by the IPCRG: Unmask My City on reducing harmful exposure to outdoor air pollution in cities. Colleagues in a number of member countries have indicated an interest in joining up.
8 May 2017: IPCRG supports Portuguese Confederation of Tobacco Prevention (COPPT) and Portuguese Tobacco Control NGO Movement open letter to the Portuguese government to protect tobacco control legislation from tobacco company interference.  To read letter, go to the blog here
17 May: launch of our new Desktop Helper here, providing much-needed guidance on appropriate use of inhaled corticosteroids in COPD.
17-18 May: opening of our first collaboration with the Slovenian Family Medicine Association – and our 5th Scientific Meeting, including a chance to meet our new Chair of Research, Rachel Jordan to discuss the future of primary care respiratory research and how to build capacity to deliver high impact research.
We welcome a lot of new faces as well as experienced researchers, and will be running four sessions of abstracts, covering topics such as patient and professional beliefs and behaviours, inhaler technique, withdrawal of inappropriate inhaled corticosteroids in COPD, helping patients change devices, timely diagnosis, treating tobacco dependence, scaling up and delivering successful education programmes, self care, pulmonary rehabilitation, risk assessment, case finding for sleep apnoea and much more!
Thank you to our sponsors and exhibitors who have enabled us to keep the costs of the meeting down, and offer opportunities to give feedback on new educational products: Boehinger Ingelheim, Novartis, Medikro Oy, European COPD Coalition, MD Education and Breathe Simple.
4 June 2017: new closing date for abstracts and the Early Bird rate for our 1st South Asian meeting, Colombo Sri Lanka
28 June – 1 July 22nd WONCA Europe Conference, Prague: as the Special Interest Group (Respiratory), IPCRG will be running two symposia (COPD: what’s new and what isn’t and Difficult to Manage Asthma) and one workshop (spirometry). Thanks to our team of Jim Reid, Miguel Roman, Ioanna Tsiligianni, and Jaime Correia de Sousa. It’s a great opportunity for our messages and tools to reach a wider audience, and also to connect with primary care colleagues in new countries, to increase our membership beyond the THIRTY country members (assuming Brazil, China and Germany are elected at this year’s AGM).
3-5 August 2017 1st South Asian Primary Care Respiratory Conference,  held jointly with our Sri Lankan colleagues, Primary Care Respiratory Group Sri Lanka, and including a collaboration with our FRESH AIR colleagues.  It’s a great opportunity to bring the interim findings and information from FRESH AIR to South Asia, including updates on ways to tackle indoor air pollution, treating tobacco dependence, introducing better diagnosis of chronic lung disease in children and adults and implementing pulmonary rehabilitation in low income countries and hard-to-reach populations.
9-13 September ERS, Milan – we are likely to hold a Research Sub-committee at this meeting – time and date to be confirmed.
6-8 October, COPOC, Zagreb The 2nd International Congress on Controversies in Primary and Outpatient Care – IPCRG is providing the respiratory session on this conference.
Hold the date: 31 May-2 June 2018 for the 1st Ibero-American primary care respiratory conference and 9th IPCRG World Conference in Porto, Portugal.  The focus is on value in a resource-constrained world, and will also be the opportunity to hear from all the FRESH AIR projects as they reach their conclusion.

To read more about our achievements in 2016 and plans for 2017-2018, you can now download our new Highlights fold-out, which will be available as a proper fold-out at all the meetings mentioned above.
Finally, you will notice on our website home page a new link to Donate!   Go here to find out why.
Jaime Correia de Sousa
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