Surgical Week Subsite 2021

Surgical Week Subsite 2021

BSW 2021 live: register now!

Dear all,


Time flies ! Less than 6 weeks to go before the 22nd BSW ! 

Despite the resurgence of the pandemic we are still confident - so far - about heading to a live congress from 9 until 11 September 2021 in the Elisabeth Center, Antwerp.. 

Although some legal restrictions will very likely apply, we are happy to offer you a BSW with real speakers, a real audience, a real technical exhibit, a surgical night, plenary sessions, catering, a quiz, a hands-on workshop, a young investigator award, a trainer-trainee session, free papers and video’s. All of this in a spectacular venue in Antwerp and in line with the legal safety COVID regulations of course.

Let’s cross fingers !

I hope you will join us.

Please find here the link to the program schedule with the overview of the 22nd BSW, the full program, the registration modalities, the necessary COVID-related mandatory restrictions and the plan of the technical exhibit and instructions how to get there. After your registration, I encourage you to download the Guidebook app on your smartphone to explore the conference program in all its details. With the option ‘My conference’, you can also compose your own personalised conference schedule!

We have been craving a real congress and put a lot of energy in this project. We hope that you will be as eager as we are to attend. At the occasion of the BSW, some sections as well as our main society will hold their general assembly, all of which already have been included in the program as well.

This conference would not be possible either without the valued support of our partners, to who’s booths you can bring a visit during the breaks. The location of the dedicated booths in the exhibit area are available in the map section of the app, as well as the floor plans of the venue and the conference rooms.

So please register, motivate your colleagues and your residents. Be part of this wonderful event!


Beware : no paper reminder will be sent !  Given the tight schedule, all info will be sent by mail and can be found on our website Check it out !


for the RBSS board,

Charles de Gheldere MD FEBS

President RBSS



Read more ...

BSW 2021 Lookout

                                                                         Brussels, 16th December 2020.

Dear all,

2020 has been a horrendous year, no doubt about that.

Our life has been put on hold in a blink. The frailty of our whole society has been brutally exposed. Everything we took for granted has been questioned. One million and a half lives -and counting- have been lost while virologists, epidemiologists, politicians, real and would-be experts kept on quarrelling about the necessary measures.

Our social life has been reduced to nothing and more than ever, the threat of economical tragedies is lurking around the corner.

We thought we did rather well after having controlled the first wave but we were naïve;  we are nowhere. Maybe the worst is yet to come.

We hope you and your loved  ones are  safe.

We are very happy to announce that the first virtual version of the BSW was a success : 533 surgeons and trainees attended,  the free papers were followed by a multiple of the usual crowd, the plenary session gathered a number of world-class speakers and the technical platform functioned very well. So we are very satisfied. I want to thank all of you who presented, moderated, attended and supported this project.


We all miss the real thing, don’t we?

I do.  I miss the social contacts, I miss talking to the experts, to our mentors, our peers, to our sponsors, to our trainees. I miss the receptions, the real sessions and the social events in a beautiful venue. And I think most of us do, even some of us who might have looked down on congresses at large and the BSW in particular.  You often just don’t realize what you got until it’s gone.  Anyway, I am sure that most of us are thus craving a “real “ congress now.

It might have seemed strange to make big plans in these uncertain times, but nonetheless we were proud to announce a REAL Belgian Surgical Week in Antwerp, May  5th- 8th, 2021.

The venue would have been  be the one we booked last year: the beautiful Flanders Meeting & Convention Centre (FMCCA), aka the Elisabeth Centre, in the heart of Antwerp.

Things unfolding like they are now we decided however to postpone the BSW to next fall. The decline in infections came to a halt and there is not that much time left. No way to be sure of the sponsoring, attendance, international guests with only 5 months left to go. Of course, we could have gone for a virtual meeting again but we really rather fancy the real thing.

The meeting will probably be planned as a hybrid one, including as many real sessions as possible but also embracing the advantages offered by a number of virtual sessions. If COVID is still as prevalent then as it is now, we will easily be able to turn it into a completely virtual meeting. Since the virtual free paper sessions were a big success, we consider having them in  the same format anyway again for these  in next year’s BSW.

The BSW 2021 hopefully being the first REAL post-COVID congress, we have a hunch that it might attract much more attendees than it used to in the past. A nice prospect. Let’s cross fingers.

I hope to meet you - in the flesh - in Antwerp next autumn.

We will keep you posted as soon as possible to update on the date and venue, very probably in September 2021, 8-11th.


For the RBSS board,

Charles de Gheldere MD FEBS Gen Surg

President RBSS

BSW 2021 Faculty: Kris Vanhaecht

Kris Vanhaecht , RN, Ph.D.


KU Leuven Institute for Healthcare Policy

University Hospitals Leuven & Flemish Hospital Network

KULeuven, Belgium




Kris Vanhaecht is an  Associate Professor at Leuven University involved in research & teaching in Quality in Healthcare within the Leuven Institute for Healthcare Policy, Faculty of Medicine. He is Policy Advisor on Quality Management at the University Hospitals Leuven & Flemish Hospital Network. On international level he collaborates with Dutch hospitals on leadership development, with the Western Norway Research Network on Integrated Care, Helse Fonna on care pathways and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, Boston on quality & safety management. He is an expert on quality for the International Society for Quality in Healthcare (ISQUA).

He is the Secretary General of the European Pathway Association (, an international not for profit association to support knowlegde sharing, research & teaching on the organization of care processes. He leads the European Quality of Care Pathway Study. Specialties: Care pathways, care process organization, quality, safety , healthcare, second victims after adverse events, mangomoments In 2017 he launched the "In search of Mangomoments" movement on patient centered care, in which health care workers provide happiness to patients with unexpected little gestures.

His motto is “Quality is the result of care”

Kris will discuss medical errors from the point of view of the perpetrator ; the “second victim” at Thursday morning’s September 9th plenary session.

BSW 2021 Faculty: Martina Lemmerer

Martina Lemmerer MD, MBA,FEBS


Department of Surgery

Medical University Graz, Au




Martina Lemmerer is  a Consultant in General and Visceral Surgery Fellow of the European Board of Surgery Department of Surgery - Division of General, Visceral and Transplantation Surgery Medical University Graz, Austria.

She  is an outstanding general and visceral surgeon with a wide range of surgical experience and years of specialization in colorectal surgery, visceral surgery, and oncological surgery. A graduate of the Medical University of Graz, She completed her surgical training at the Surgery Department of the University Hospital Graz and subsequently specialized in visceral and colorectal surgery at St. John’s Hospital in Graz. An expert in the treatment of the open abdomen, complications management, and the Vacuum Assisted Closure Therapy for more than 15 years, she is also a lecturer on the subject of topical negative pressure therapy and has trained innumerable national and international surgeons on the subject of Abdominal Vacuum Assisted Closure.

Other of her focal areas are oncological abdominal surgery, IBD (Crohn’s Disease, cerative Colitis), complication management, fistula surgery, and surgery of the rectum and anus. She is leader of the Colorectal Surgery Group at the Department of Surgery at the University Hospital Graz and a co-opted board member of the Association for Coloproctology of the Austrian Society of Surgery. She is  the representative for Central Europe of the European Society of Coloproctology. Passionate about training young colleagues, she is a member of the national Examination Board for Surgery and a board member for the Medical Education of the Styrian Medical Association.

On top of her medical and surgical credentials she has other talents : she holds a Master of Business Administration in Health Care and Hospital Management, she has a degree as fashion designer and is a glider pilot.

Martina is sure that her experience as a glider pilot helps her in surgery.

She will explain us how in a lecture in the plenary session on Friday September 10th.

BSW 2021 Faculty: Tessa Richards

Tessa Richards MD

Senior Editor/ Patient Partnership

British Medical Journal

London, UK




Dr Tessa Richards is a senior editor at The BMJ and leads the BMJs patient partnership initiative. She was trained at Guy’s hospital in London and worked as a general physician and  rheumatologist in the NHS before joining the BMJ editorial staff. Here she has led the journals GP, Education and Analysis sections and established the Overdiagnosis series ( part of the BMJs Too Much Medicine campaign) and one on High Integrity Health.

She is a member of the Royal College of Physicians, a BMJ columnist and writes regularly on patient perspectives. Series she has co-ordinated include ones on medical education, medicine in India, HMO’s and medicine in Europe.

BMJ theme issues commissioned include Health in the Middle East, Partnering with Patients, and Patient Centred Care. She has a long standing interest in global health and European Health policy and is a regular writer and speaker on the importance and potential of patient and public partnership in healthcare and health research

She lives since 2004 with stage IV adrenal cancer, hyperparathyroidy and pernicious anemia, and is a carer for close family members with rheumatoid arthritis, dementia, and blindness.

Her own experience as a professional and a patient makes her the ideal person to talk about patient’s involvement in medical care.

Tessa’s talk “ Sharing ideas, decisions and power with patients” will  be  set on Thursday’s September 9th plenary session between 11am and 1 pm.



logoBSW2021final wide

© 2021 by RBSS. All Rights Reserved.

Please publish modules in offcanvas position.