ESU Northern and Baltic Countries Regional Conference: Life with Covid-19

Our President An Hermans and Secretary Guido Dumon were invited by Georg Männik and Ann Räämet to Tallinn for the ESU Northern and Baltic Countries Regional Conference that took place from 19-21 May. The central theme was: ‘Life with Covid-19. New tasks and challenges for senior members of society. Possible solutions and social adaptation to the new situation.’ The event was recorded and could be followed live on Facebook and Zoom. Our president stressed that: “It is crucial to maintain contacts, this was partly hampered by the pandemic, but especially in the baltic states with its rich geopolitical history, people must be able to tell their story. We have to be here physically to have contact and to see and experience things.”

We were happy to see many familiar faces from our ESU family: Lars O. Molin, Jackūnas Žibartas, Leena Jääskeläinen, Heinz Becker (video message) and  Lidmila Nemcova. They gave us information about the impact of COVID-19 in their Member State through figures and numbers, concrete examples and compelling testimonies. We listened to the story of Татьяна Зелко from Belarus, in addition to their COVID-19 story, people in Belarus are facing a lot of political tensions. It was eye-opening to listen to her story, which is the voice of the seniors in Belarus. With the peaceful protests they try to be heard in their country. 

According to Dr Georg Männik, President of the Isamaa Seniors’ Council, organizing the conference,  the effects of the COVID pandemic have brought fundamental changes in the organisation of our social life. “These changes are especially observed by senior citizens of the society, who belong to the highest risk group. The aim of the conference was to look at the practices of other countries and the lessons of the healthcare system in controlling the pandemic,” said Männik. We want to thank Dr Georg Männik, Chairman of the Senior’s Association of ISAMAA for his hospitality and for proposing two presentations on the subjects:

– Practical lessons for healthcare in controlling a pandemic

– Possible solutions of e-Health tools to protect the health of the  population

On the second day, in the morning we welcomed Prof. Dr Steven Van Hecke, he informed us about ‘The effects of the pandemic on the coping of senior members of  Society’ An Hermans presented how we as ESU could deal within our organisation with the adjustments required by COVID-19. It was an interesting journey and you can find the PPT presentation here. 

The full programme of the conference is available here.

 

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