ESPGHAN 2024 Recap

Our time at the 2024 ESPGHAN conference was incredibly productive and motivating!

The ESPGHAN Congress is an annual meeting hosted by the European Society for Paediatric Gastroenterology Hepatology and Nutrition. It is designed to promote the health of children through the dissemination of the latest science-based information, the promotion of best practices in the delivery of care and providing high-quality education for pediatric gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition professionals.

We were invited to host a booth and represent the patient voice at several different committee meetings, including the Pediatric Cholestasis Liver Disease (PCLD) working group (part of the Forum for Collaborative Research), the ESPGHAN Public Affairs Committee, and a meetup of European organizations.

If you have participated in our patient registry, Project IMPACT focus groups, community interviews, or the PFIC Family & Scientific Conference– please know that your voice was incorporated into these important conversations. This was a powerful opportunity to share our work and the needs of our community with a wider network of researchers, clinicians, government regulators, and other patient organizations who are interested in international collaborations.

For the second year in a row, several members of the International Alliance were also able to join our Executive Director, Emily Ventura, in Milan for the conference. Francesca Lombardozzi, director of PFIC Italia, shared her story at several industry meetings and in collaborative advocacy forums with other organizations across Europe. We were also joined by Nikolina A. and Emily W., who each made connections and explored solutions for their specific advocacy needs in Germany and the UK. Together, we hosted a booth that was visited by clinicians from all over the world in an effort to educate, advocate, and raise awareness about PFIC.

Another major highlight of the conference was the opportunity to help foster the growth of PFIC advocacy communities in Brazil and India. For the past several years, these grassroots patient communities have been building over WhatsApp and other virtual spaces. Through networking opportunities at ESPGHAN, we were able to connect several new clinicians with the existing patient communities in their countries.

Francesca, Nikolina, and Emily V. in Milan!

It was incredibly inspiring to see the leadership growth of PFIC patient advocates from all over the world. While we work to improve the lives of  PFIC patients worldwide, the role of international patient leaders to stimulate solutions that best serve the needs of their specific country is invaluable. We really are #strongertogether and are already looking forward to ESPGHAN 2025! 

Stay tuned for information on the next International Alliance Meeting, coming this summer,  with a focus on discussing this year’s global PFIC Awareness Day advocacy campaign!

Here are some of our favorite photos from the event!