SOPHE pivots to highly successful virtual conference during COVID-19 pandemic
Registrants enjoyed engaging presentations on a dynamic, cutting-edge platform
By: Society for Public Health Education
"During this unprecedented time of COVID-19, we knew the health and safety of attendees, speakers, exhibitors and staff was the foremost priority," said SOPHE 2019-2020 Pres.Jean Breny, PhD, MPH. "Yet, we wanted to redouble efforts to provide critical health education research, practice and pedagogy to SOPHE members and other health professionals who abided by public health guidance to stay at home or telework."
In his keynote address, former U.S. Surgeon Gen. Dr. David Satcher underscored the importance of mental health during such adversity. He called on health education professionals to address mental health as an equity issue, break down stigma, and demonstrate "care, compassion, courage and a commitment to perseverance."
Dr. Breny's address challenged health educators to advance health equity by taking an anti-racism approach to health promotion. She identified five avenues to break down racism as a social determinant of health - using tools - photovoice, community-based participatory research and addressing implicit bias. Dr. Breny announced a new annual SOPHE award, the David Satcher Lecture for Health Equity and Social Justice, to continually advance the scholarship, practice and advocacy in this arena.
"We are pleased that so many of our more than 800 pre-registrants tuned in for their virtual SOPHE conference experience,"
In adjusting the 2 ½-day conference schedule to the online format, SOPHE will air additional sessions through April 7. Pre-registered participants were upgraded to the virtual meeting, while other health professionals are welcome to register to view the upcoming live sessions and all recordings for the next year until March 2021. More than 59 advanced and entry-level continuing education contact hours (CECHs) and Certified in Public Health (CPH) Renewal Credits are available for all sessions – live and recordings.
Virtual SOPHE 2020 also features some 120 scientific posters, a Virtual Exhibit Hall with more than 50 exhibitor and sponsors, multiple resources and handouts, and several SOPHE 70th Anniversary videos.
For 70 years, SOPHE has supported and represented professionals in health education and health promotion fields to create a healthier world. SOPHE provides all people working to improve the world's health with credible and updated information on public health – what's needed, what's new and what works.