PACIFIC DENTAL CONFERENCE 2022

In the interest of ensuring we can have a safe and meaningful PDC experience for 2022, the PDC Organizing Group (PDCOG) has taken the decision, as they did in 2021, to transition our conference to a virtual format once again for 2022. While we had been in constant contact with Vancouver Coastal Health (VCH) and our venue partners and have been assured we could still hold an in-person conference under the current restrictions, we could not see doing so at this time given the evolving and dynamic conditions around the spread of Omicron within our community and the impact it is having and will continue to have in the coming weeks.

Dr. Bonnie Henry's announcement on January 17, 2022 of the extension of current PHO restrictions, along with the expectation that hospitalizations will continue to increase every day over the coming weeks made it clear there were too many risks and restrictions that could compromise not only the health of our community but the quality of the conference. While we had been hopeful we could resume the in-person experience, given the overwhelmingly positive feedback we received through participation and on the quality of 2021's conference we are confident this is the best solution to the current situation and look forward to resuming in-person in 2023.

This decision was not made lightly, and we know some will be disappointed. Beyond the current situation in BC with the rapid spread of Omicron and expectation of increased hospitalizations, the PDCOG also considered many other factors. These included the advisory the CDC recently placed on travel from US to Canada affecting speakers and exhibitors, the heightened restrictions in Ontario affecting many potential participants, the risk to already strained dental offices given estimates that 20-30% of workforces could be out due to illness, and the need, as healthcare professionals, to do our part to protect our healthcare system.