SMA Chairman’s Newsletter: 1st February 2021

I will take this opportunity to wish everyone a better and brighter 2021.

Whilst 2020 may have been memorable for all the wrong reasons, the evidence that 2021 will be better is inconclusive at this stage. Evolution of COVID impact is ongoing, effective vaccination is yet to reach Australia, and the trauma of the 2019-2020 bushfires is settling, but not resolved. The Shoalhaven has dodged several COVID bullets over the last year, and in terms of COVID caseload, has seen surprisingly little – strong evidence that the Australian and NSW strategies are effective.

We are still governed by these strategies which affect the way we conduct ourselves in terms of everyday life, medical practices, meetings, and our SMA conferences.

Our October 2020 SMA Conference was held in Zoom format with a hub of presenters and IT support at the Nowra Golf Club. Surprisingly, there was strong support for this format with little negative feedback, and a majority of attendees very supportive.

We managed to record most of the October Conference, with the aim of making content available to our members (just another perk of SMA membership) via secure access YouTube presentations. This should be available soon via the website.

Our plans for the March 20, 2021 Conference remain a little dynamic. We are acting on Infectious Diseases advice to plan the setup. At this stage, the plan is to conduct a hybrid Conference with either a Zoom option or face-to-face option at the Nowra Golf Club available. COVID guidelines will be adhered to.

The SMA Committee is excited by the prospect of this March 20 Conference, and hope to see you there or on-screen.

Warren Bruce
Chairman of Shoalhaven Medical Association

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