Call for expression of interest to host AfHEA's 2022 conference
Dear colleagues (please forward to authorities and institutions who may be concerned and/or interested),
The African Health Economics and Policy Association (AfHEA) is planning to hold its 6th conference in March 2022 with approval from the Board of Trustees. The last 5 conferences were successfully held in Ghana (2009), Senegal (2011), Kenya (2014), Morocco (2016) and lastly Ghana (2019). We are now searching for a suitable country and venue to host the 6th conference,
taking into consideration the unique challenges brought about by covid-19 that are likely to last for several years to come. Although there are now promising vaccines either deployed or in the works in the developed countries, it is notable that Africa is not yet able to obtain or predict with certainty when these vaccines will be available for mass vaccinations among our populations. It therefore seems prudent for now, in planning for the conference, to be cognisant of the context that includes limited international travels, the need for social distancing, the need to hold virtual meetings etc. Hence the required conference facilities would need to address these aspects.
Based on the aforementioned, countries and institutions interested in hosting our 6th conference are hereby requested to submit their expressions of interest which should cover and fully describe as many of the following points as possible:
- Venue meeting place for up to 400 people and 4 break-out rooms plus secretariat room (need costs to assess feasibility) – this assumes Covid restrictions might have eased by then, otherwise a hybrid conference with virtual and socially-distanced in person participants for no more than 150 – 200 people might suffice
- Venue meeting place is easily accessible from the international airport (to avoid high airport transfer costs)
- Various accommodation options for different categories of participants, which are close to the conference venue
- Official notice or contacts with Ministry of Foreign Affairs for visa facilitation for participants including clear procedures for those who have no embassy of the country to get visas in advance (airport visas)
- Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Ministry of Health willing to issue participants the visa invitation letters
- Availability of competent local event planner
- Political stability and respect for individual rights
- AfHEA local chapter ready to support
- Ministry of Health or other relevant government department formally ready to co-host the conference
- Support from other authorities or agencies including research centers in country (provide examples of such institutions)
- Readiness of authorities to contribute through support for welcome cocktail and conference dinner (if applicable)
- Country is a noted leader or has a significant health financing initiative or story to share with participants
- State other advantages of country e.g. tourism attractions that could boost attendance by people capable of paying fees for themselves
- Are there other notable reasons why this country should be selected to host the next conference?
- Measures the country will put in place to protect the participants from covid-19
- Availability of reliable infrastructure to host a virtual conference (including hardware, software and security infrastructure).
Prior to sending out this call for expression of interest, one country had already expressed its desire to host the conference but we would also like to give other countries the opportunity to submit their EOI before a final decision is made.
A country host selection committee has been set up to review the submissions and the winning bid will be announced by February 26, 2021.
We look forward to receiving your submissions.