The ninth UK/Ireland Conference on Occupational and Environmental Epidemiology (OEEC) was hosted by the NDPH this year and held at the Ship Street Centre, Jesus College, on 16 April, 2015.
Most occupational and environmental epidemiologists go to the international EPICOH and/or ISEE conferences and there was nothing like these conferences in the UK or Ireland. A decade ago, a group of us decided to set up an annual national conference to support the discipline in the British Isles. Since then, the conference has been held in Manchester, Birmingham, Edinburgh, various sites in London, and now Oxford. So far it has kept to a formula of half a day on occupational epidemiology, half a day on environmental epidemiology, a keynote lecture in each area, oral presentations, and posters. The Oxford conference had more presentations than ever before (40) and more registered delegates (83) and the committee was pleased with the ‘buzz’ the conference generated. Presentations covered a range of topic areas, from cancer to asthma to reproductive outcomes to infectious disease. As well as findings from epidemiological studies, innovative study designs and statistical refinements were presented, and also plans for new projects and links from epidemiology to policy.
The impetus for setting up these conferences came because, although there are relevant national scientific societies (SSM and SOM), neither has a strong strand on occupational and environmental epidemiology in its annual scientific meeting. The group is discussing the possibility of holding the 2016 conference back-to-back with another new conference series – the Exposure Science conference. We are also considering running a course on an aspect of occupational and environmental epidemiology back-to-back with the conference.
If you would like to be on the mailing list for the 2016 conference, please contact Dr Gillian Frost (Health and Safety Laboratory, Buxton) on firstname.lastname@example.org.
K M Venables
Chair, Organising Committee, OEEC 2015