Conference Frequently Asked Questions 

Register by visiting the OMERACT 2023 Meeting Website

https://omeract2023.swoogo.com/om2023/2675203 and completing the online form. OMERACT accepts all major credit cards, as well as checks for payment.

Your registration provides you 5 nights’ accommodation at the Cheyenne Mountain Resort, Colorado Springs, USA , all meals and airport transfers. It also includes access to all plenary presentations, concurrent breakout sessions, and multiple social and networking receptions that make up the conference. Additionally, you receive log-in credentials to utilize our mobile conference app to help navigate your conference experience.

Virtual OMERACT 2023 registration provides attendees who may not be able to travel to the in-person conference with:

  • Access to all OMERACT Special Interest Group sessions
  • The conference app which include all meeting materials, fellow posters, surveys, and participation in networking
  • Pre-event communications: such as reminders, agendas, and any necessary preparation instructions.
  • Virtual event platform access: Participants will be given access to the virtual event platform, where they can join the special interest group session
  • Post-event communications: such as survey, feedback, follow-up materials and any necessary information about next steps.

OMERACT has adopted requirements and protocols associated with attendance at all in-person conferences.

OMERACT’s priority in all conferences is the safety and welfare of our attendees and staff. To mitigate risk to attendees at in-person conferences, OMERACT will require the following: 

  • All people attending the conference must be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. 
  • Upon registration attendees will be asked to indicate that they are personally responsible for coming prepared (fully vaccinated against COVID as per the existing World Health Organization’s recommendations) for the conference and will comply with all local, state/province or national policies and mandates; as well as adhere to any safety requests from the facility and/or the organizers.
  • OMERACT reserves the right to adjust formats, reschedule, or cancel conferences, meetings, or events to ensure the safety of attendees.

While vaccinations, observance of safety protocols, and exercise of personal discipline may reduce risk, an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 does remain in connection with any public gathering.
 

Airports serving the Colorado Springs area include:

Ground transportation is included with your registration from either Denver or Colorado Springs airports.. To best coordinate your transfers for your arrival and departure please upload your flight details to your registration. We will provide you with exact pick up and drop details closer to the meeting. Please note that transfers outside of arrivals on April 30th & May 1st & departures on May 6th cannot be accommodated. 

Be sure your passport is up to date for 2023 travel to the United States. Complete details are available at https://www.usa.gov/passport.  

Yes, all meals are included including daily breakfasts, lunch, coffee breaks, daily dinners, and the farewell gala dinner.

In the unlikely and extreme event that OMERACT is forced to cancel the conference, OMERACT is not responsible for fees or penalties that conference registrants may incur for non-refundable airline tickets.

Registration Cancellations
Last minute changes happen. Reference the information below to understand the cancellation process for your conference registration.

Registration Cancellations – OMERACT 2023

Fifty percent of the conference registration fee will be refunded if a cancellation is necessary and written notification is received in the OMERACT office no later than March 1st, 2023. After the specified date, no refunds will be issued, except in cases of personal medical emergencies.
Refund requests due to medical emergencies at the time of the conference may be eligible for a 75% refund. In the event of such a cancellation request by a conference registrant, the registrant must provide OMERACT with documentation to support their request. 
Registration substitutions must be sent via email and must be submitted by either the person who paid for the registration or by the original attendee. 

To request a change or a cancellation for the 2023 Conference contact the OMERACT team at admin@omeract.org 

We encourage all attendees to register for the conference in advance. This allows us to plan accordingly for the appropriate number of attendees and manage any accommodations needed. All registrations must be received by April 15th, 2023.

OMERACT does not currently offer a one-day attendee registration rate. 

Yes, the fee for a guest is $1000USD please add this information to your online registration.

OMERACT conferences are a unique format. Working Groups submit proposals for meeting space and the program is set accordingly up to a year in advance. 

Yes. The tentative program for the Conference is posted online and updated as we get closer to start of the conference.

As we get closer to the conference all sessions, speakers, posters, and pre-reading materials will be available on the app.

New for OMERACT 2023 fellows will be giving lightning talks (2.5-minute presentations) to all OMERACT 2023 attendees immediately following this session fellows will be by their posters. Attendees can interact with fellows at the posters and discuss their research with them. You can visit the Poster Information section on the Conference app for information on posters. 

Plenary sessions are interactive sessions which all conference members of all stakeholder groups attend. Such a session may include a broad range of content, from keynotes to panel discussions. Often there are concurrent breakout sessions to facilitate small group discussion that feeds back to the larger audience.

All meeting attendees are invited to attend the Welcome Reception on Monday night. Attendance is included with your registration.

Several factors go into our choice of conference locations:

  1. We aim to meet in various regions around the globe, alternating between the US, Europe, Australia, and Canada when possible. We try to choose cities that members will enjoy visiting but are also easily accessible for travelers.
  2. The OMERACT conference is unique in that we offer many presentations and breakout rooms that take place during the conference. This requires facilities that can meet our plenary session needs, while also offering a second large room for the poster hall and a significant number of individual rooms for concurrent breakout sessions. Only certain venues can offer these accommodations within our budget.

Approximate dates of conference have become traditional and well-established for many organizations, OMERACT among them. OMERACT conferences historically take place in the first 3 weeks of May. Conferences have distributed themselves throughout the year in hopes of avoiding scheduling conflicts, so that you may attend more than one according to your professional needs. We try our best to avoid overlapping other conferences and must consider international holiday dates and hotel availability.  Some years, this set of constraints leaves us with only one possible weekend; other years, we have more choices. It's especially important that we reserve our hotels well in advance.

We submit our profile to hotels to prepare bids; OMERACT reviews the bids and makes recommendations to the Management Group. Sometimes staff will complete a site visit to see if the hotel will meet our needs and those of our Patient Research Partners. We must do that several years in advance to guarantee the dates and to ensure the best rates possible. That means we must make our best estimate several years in advance about how many members could attend our conference, so that we meet our obligations to the hotel and have facilities that are the right size.

OMERACT conferences are complex events that require multiple steps and processes. Registration to attend OMERACT conference is an all-inclusive fee. To give you an idea of the expenses we have made a brief highlight of some of our costs below.  We have reviewed the costs regarding hotels, food, conference attendance, travel for both EULAR and ACR and we believe our costs are in line with the overall costs of these meetings.  Furthermore, the meeting provides unique opportunities to meet and network regarding outcome measures and their intricacies.

Program
The conference program is now a multi-page document giving participants full details about the experience they will have and what they will learn during each session. The program must offer participants not only plenary sessions, but also a variety of breakout sessions, networking opportunities, and coaching/mentoring sessions, and all must be interactive and provide the participant with tips, techniques, and takeaways. Developing the program and corresponding app requires expertise, staff, and resources to create.

Technology
Keeping up with the demands of technology is a never-ending additional cost. Participant expectations must be met if we want them to return. However, costs rise every year because of upgraded devices, the demand to provide parts or all the event on video, webinars, etc.

In the early years, we would borrow one or two data projectors and bring them to our event. Other than accommodations and food, technology costs are our top expense. Keep in mind that for every additional workshop or session, we must rent data projectors, screens, microphones, clickers, and any other device the speaker may require per day. Don’t forget the expertise of on-site technicians for the duration of the event including delegate WI-FI.

Conference Registration
Conference registration can no longer be by cheque only. Online registration is a must! Registration software must be purchased, and significant fees paid to maintain the software.
Registration must include payment by credit card and OMERACT pays significant credit card fees (3–5%), if participants cancel, we pay it twice, which is why there is a fee for canceling.  

Hotel
Hotel rates are set when the contract is signed with the hotel. This is often 2-3 years in advance. Hotel planners are more inclined to bargain in bad times than good ones, even though the event itself will take place far in the future when the economy could be in a different state. Rates also vary by season.  

As a small, non-profit organization, we aim to break even on our conferences and set the prices as such.

Unfortunately, we are not able to reserve room blocks in multiple hotels.

We get our meeting rooms for the conference by promising the conference hotel that we will fill a minimum number of sleeping rooms for a given number of nights and sign a contract to that affect. If our members don’t fill that block of rooms because they are staying somewhere else, OMERACT must pay the difference directly to the hotel.

Further, our audio-visual charges are negotiated on the assumption that we are bringing that much income for the hotel (the charges are also based on the number of rooms needing the equipment), so other rates would go up as well if we failed to meet our minimum. If we promised fewer room nights when we sign the contract, the hotel would not give us enough meeting rooms for our conference sessions. This would result in less programming and presentation slots for attendees to enjoy.

 A budget hotel is less expensive because almost all its square footage is for sleeping rooms, so it can charge a lower rate for those rooms. Therefore, less expensive hotels don't have the meeting rooms or audio-visual services to serve us. 

The program takes place over several days with many scheduled sessions, and some conflicts are unavoidable. The organizers work hard to avoid conflicts of topics and potential audiences while still offering presentation opportunities to many members on a range of topics.

The priority, however, must be avoiding co-chair scheduling conflicts: a co-chairs cannot present in two sessions at the same time. Special scheduling requests can contribute to conflicts as well. Any special scheduling request may have a ripple effect to avoid individual conflicts.