Dear Colleagues and Friends

It is my very great pleasure to welcome you all to our Autumn meeting in Killashee Hotel. This is the final meeting of my Presidency, a period which has been a great honour for me in leading such a prestigious organisation. I sincerely hope that you have enjoyed the past two years half as much as I have.

The Irish Society for Rheumatology has a proud history and tradition. Arguably its main strength lies in the crossspeciality involvement of Rheumatologists and scientists in an all Ireland capacity. Our combined focus is in the understanding of the mechanisms of disease in Rheumatology and the clinical management of our patients. The recent establishment of RA Biologics Registry of Ireland is, I hope, going to provide the foundation for some our future researchers in Ireland.

I am particularly delighted to see the inaugural Bernard Connor undergraduate medal winner Eva McCabe at the same session as our Young Investigator and Lifetime Achievement award and hope that future Bernard Connor medal winners will one day re-appear as Young Investigator and perhaps Lifetime Achievement Winners. I am particularly grateful to Dr Suzanne Donnelly and our judges in selecting the Bernard Connor medal winner. This year we have offered a small number of meeting places to undergraduates as meeting interns in order to give them exposure to what a career in rheumatology can offer them.

I hope we can continue to build on our strengths and to continue to develop the inter-good relationships between all stakeholders in Irish Rheumatology. It is our collective responsibility to raise public awareness of the disease. The ISR must support the profession in delivering high quality care of patients and lobby centrally to influence government policy.

I warmly welcome our colleagues in IRHPS and I hope that they will has a memorable conference. Likewise a big thank you to our colleagues in Industry for their continued support.

I am very grateful to our Abstract Review Panel for their diligence in selecting the best abstract submissions for presentation. Well done John Carey, Anne Barbara Mongey, Nicola Ambrose and John Ryan.

We have put together a very good academic programme for this meeting. I trust that you will find it educational, interesting and stimulating.

I have no doubt that within the society we have world class professionals delivering state of the art services to the population. We also have many recently appointed colleagues with novel skills and a cohort of outstanding trainees.

I would like to thank the officers and board for their support during the past two years, likewise the staff of ISR. At the end of this year I will hand over the baton to Sandy Fraser to whom I wish every success and support over the coming two years.

I with you, am aware of the problems that exist but look forward with enthusiasm to the future and the challenges ahead.

For now let us all enjoy the educational and social interaction !

I look forward to meeting with all of you here, renewing old acquaintances and making new ones.

Yours sincerely

Professor David Kane,
ISR President