Invitation from the Convenor

Dear Colleagues

The 20th National Congress will be held from 20 – 24 October 2021 at Champagne Sports Resort. At this stage, the organizing committee is confident that an in-person congress (with safety protocols) will be possible. If we need to postpone the congress (due to a change in Covid legislation), you will be notified immediately.

The hotel has also given us a written undertaking (available on the website www.sasop2021.co.za) that there will be no penalties (including paid accommodation) should the congress be postponed.Registration fees will also be refunded (or transferred) should the congress be postponed due to a change in Covid legislation.

The organisers are planning an event designed for the needs of psychiatrists in the academic sector, the public sector, the private sector, for psychiatric registrars, general practitioners with an interest in psychiatry and the rest of the psychiatric multi-professional team. We do not simply want to copy and paste from previous congresses, but really want to assess the needs of the participants of the national congress. Results from a survey have shown that 90% of SASOP members would prefer an in-person congress.

We are also planning an event around networking with colleagues. The daily program will start at 07:30 in the morning with breakfast symposia and will end at approximately 14:00 or 15:00 every day to give time for delegates to relax, network and enjoy their surroundings. The internationally facultywill join the congress virtually with an interactive Q&A discussion following each presentation.

A dedicated CPD accredited “Art & Culture”programme related to psychiatry,has also been included. This will include presentations& discussionrelating to movies, poetry, music, art and others with a psychiatric theme.

The aim of the SASOP 2021 Congress is to drastically reduce its’ carbon and plastic footprint, andenhance future sustainability. We have launched a project with great enthusiasm from our sponsors to suggest novel ideas of building sustainable, non-plastic stands, with the aim of re-using the materials in a building project of school classrooms at a local community. Without “letting the cat out of the bag”, this alone would be an inspiration to attend the conference.

To further reduce our paper footprint, we are planning to move to more digitally inspired marketing and poster presentation areas.

The organising committee warmly invites you and is looking forward to hosting you for this event. We have therefore also created special tariffs for early-early bird registrations and early bird registrations with a marked reduction off the normal registration fee.

We want you to make use of the time created to fulfil not only your academic needs but the need to spend some time with your colleagues.

We hope to see you in the Berg in October!

Eugene Allers

The Organising Committee:

Dr Eugene Allers (Convenor) & Dr Kobus Roux (Co-Convenor)
Dr Connie Mataboga, Prof Gerhard Grobler (Chair of Scientific Committee)Prof Bonga Chiliza (SASOP President)
Dr Hoepie Howell, Dr Marius Pretorius, Dr Matlala Mabeba, Dr Mvuyiso Talatala&Dr Kim Laxton