Dear WEO friends and supporters 

I am writing to convey my very best wishes and sincere thanks to all of you as we wrap up an eventful 2019 and shift our momentum into the next calendar year. The past 12 months have been marked by noteworthy achievements. As we reflect on the past year, I believe that we have many reasons to have great pride in our accomplishments and to look forward with enthusiasm to the next year at WEO.

Just a few examples: ENDO 2020, our 2nd World Congress of GI Endoscopy, taking place in Rio de Janeiro, March 7 – 10, 2020 is making excellent progress. An astonishing 793 abstracts have been received from around the globe, with 35% from Latin America. A big thank you goes to all those who have put forward their research – your contribution to ENDO 2020 will go toward making the Congress a huge success. We are also very proud of the broad base of experts showcasing state-of-the-art digestive endoscopy. International and local experts will perform highly instructive procedures in the live demonstration sessions from Hyderabad, Sao Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro and will mentor participants in our dedicated hands-on training sessions.

We are very glad to see that our WEO Individual Membership community is continuing to grow after its start in 2018. We have been delighted to welcome members from around the globe and we look forward to seeing our network grow steadily in 2020.

WEO is also pleased to announce several new officers who will begin their terms in March 2020: President-elect: Hisao Tajiri (Japan), Secretary-General and Education Committee Chair: Douglas Faigel (USA), Colorectal Cancer Screening Committee Chair: Evelien Dekker (Netherlands), Surgical Endoscopy Committee Chair: Philip Chiu (Hong Kong). My very best wishes go to our incoming WEO President, my friend Fabian Emura, as he enjoys your continuing support. We would also like to express sincere gratitude to the outgoing officers for their vision, as well as their hard work, time, energy, and persistence. WEO has made tremendous progress over the past years, and this is clearly due to the phenomenal work of our officers. 

WEO will continue to bring our well-established and sought-after educational activities to the community of endoscopists and gastroenterologists worldwide, each physician acting as a multiplier of our mission. We have expanded our educational activities with the newly launched and very successful WEO Endoscopy Tour in Latin America and with the new WEO Fellowship Program offering endoscopists valuable opportunities to develop their ERCP skills at selected Chinese endoscopy centers. The second WEO International School of EUS (WISE) course has been successfully completed and applications are now closed for the third WISE course 2020. We are also happy to share that institutions from around the globe have joined our Collaboration of Organized and Recognized Endoscopy units (CORE) program, and we are very proud that currently 18 WEO Centers of Excellence from all over the world, with an outstanding reputation in education within digestive endoscopy, are now promoting high quality endoscopy.

Our organization – and all of you who are part of it – will maintain our momentum in 2020 and actively work to shape our own future as the world leader in endoscopic education and to tirelessly promote high standards and quality in endoscopy. We will continue to engage actively in developing and implementing quality education in digestive endoscopy and increasing access to and knowledge of endoscopy in underserved areas of the world.

This is a great organization. Thanks for being part of it and thank you very much for helping to make the past year so memorable. WEO’s achievements in 2019 would not have been possible without the intense teamwork of our leadership and committee members, and the active involvement of all our scientific and corporate partners. We are very grateful for your continuing support!

WEO and ENDO 2020, connecting the world of endoscopy.

We wish you and your families a prosperous, happy, and fulfilling year ahead!

With warm regards,

Jean-Francois Rey

WEO President