The Ethiopian Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ESOG) concluded its annual conference on February 22, 2022. The conference themed- Reproductive and Maternal Health Services at Times of War and Conflict- started with virtual preconference CMEs on February 19, 2022. The preconference CMEs brought together dozens of speakers from all across the world for virtual lectures and hands-on training on ultrasound.

Featuring Dr. Bethel Dereje as its master of ceremony, the conference also brought to the stage Dr. Mekdes Daba, president of ESOG delivered the presidential speech, Mrs. Yemeserach Belayneh, advisor to The David and Lucile Packard Foundation, delivered a keynote address, Dr. Ayele Teshome, state minister of Health delivered, opened the conference. As the tradition dictates since recent years, the opening ceremony also saw the welcoming of newly graduating Ob-Gyns from the various institutions and the award of members for their services in health care.

At the opening conference, Dr. Fitsum Araya was awarded this year’s Lifetime Achievement Award. Dr. Brook Getahun, on the other hand, took ESOG’s Distinguished Service Award of the Year. This year’s Award of Honor was given to all Ob-Gyns and health care providers who continued their service to their communities under challenging security challenges. ESOG’s Lifetime Achievement Award is given to lifetime dedication to advocate and promote women’s RH&R. Distinguished Service Award is extended to those health care providers for exceptional contributions to improve the quality of health care in Ethiopia through direct patient care. ESOG’s Award of Honor recognizes initiatives to promote, protect and improve the quality of health care of Ethiopian women.

Chaired by Dr. Zufan Lakew, the plenary session of the conference brought to the stage Dr. Martha Minweyelet, senior advisor at the Ministry of Health (MoH) and lead of Resource Mobilization for Conflict-Related Health Facility Restoration, Dr. Melkamu Abte, head of Amhara Regional State’s Health Bureau, Dr. Mekdes Daba, Mohammed Abdukadier, Planning, Monitoring, and Evaluation Director, Afar Regional Health Bureau, and Adinew Hussien, acting program director at Family Guidance Association of Ethiopia. The panelists shared their views and experiences on the Challenges of Women in Accessing Reproductive and Maternal Health Services, Susceptibility and clinical care for sexual assault survivors in times of war and conflict, Country preparedness, recovery plan, and Response: the Role of Stakeholders.

At its business meeting, ESOG’s annual conference elected a new president and replaced executive board members who have finished their terms. ESOG’s general assembly elected Dr. Abdulfetah Abdulkadir as its new president replacing the outgoing Dr. Mekdes Daba while Dr. Gelane Lelissa replaced the outgoing vice president Dr. Fikremelekot Temesgen. The general assembly retained former members Dr. Rahel Demissew, who was elected as an honorary secretary, and Dr. Abdu Mengesha. The general assembly has also elected Dr. Tadesse Urgie, Dr. Demissew Amenu, and Dr. Ethiopia Kumlachew.

The scientific sessions of the conference, which were conducted on February 22, 2022, saw presentations from more than a dozen of researchers and a state-of-the-art lecture on war victims’ memorials by Professor Peter Schwartz. The conference also involved a series of sessions on updates on different maternal and reproductive health matters.