More than 1,200 physiotherapists from across the world came together recently for the 2016 ER-WCPT congress in Liverpool.

conference delegates

Delegates heard international perspectives on five key themes in well-attended sessions that were delivered in a range of formats, including discussion panels, platform presentations and rapid 5s.

conference delegates

Sarah Bazin (above), chair of the ER-WCPT’s executive committee said a key objective had been to make the congress as interactive as possible and this format gave delegates ‘plenty of opportunity to immerse yourself in the topics’.

Earlier, WCPT president Emma Stokes had told physiotherapists that ‘we are better together’ and set out how the organisation remains vital for influencing on behalf of the profession internationally.

She also noted the importance of global cooperation, collaboration and friendship during uncertain times.

conference delegates

Giving the annual Chartered Society of Physiotherapy’s Founders’ Lecture for the hosts was Michael Brennan (above), chief executive of the Canadian Physiotherapy Association. An economist, Mr Brennan showed how physiotherapists can use data to ever greater effect when arguing the case for their services.

But he ended on a more emotional note, reminding the audience that physiotherapists provided hope through a profession rooted in love.

On day two of congress, Brian Caulfield, Director of Ireland’s Data Analytics Research Centre ‘INSIGHT’, presented the Alan Walker Memorial Lecture.

In his speech, Mr Caulfield discussed how physiotherapists and data scientists are working together to respond to digital age challenges and realise the opportunity.

He urged physiotherapists to look after individual and community health in a process that speaks to the health journey of the person, leveraging a variety of technologies to do so.

Comedian and physiotherapist Elaine Miller received a standing ovation for her closing session ‘Stand up for Physiotherapy’.

Delegates laughed (and squirmed) as Ms Miller explored the benefits and considerations of using humour as a tool in clinical interactions and evidence dissemination. 

You can still view the full programme and see the online conversation as it unfolded on Twitter using the hashtag #erwcpt2016.