Pamela S. Dallstream is director of education for the Society of Critical Care Medicine.
Describe your event.
The Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) is the largest nonprofit healthcare organization dedicated to promoting excellence and consistency in the practice of critical care.
With members in more than 100 countries, SCCM is the only organization that represents all professional components of the critical care team. The Society offers a variety of activities that ensures excellence in patient care, education, research and advocacy.
The 2018 SCCM Annual Congress, held in San Antonio February 25-28, 2018, brought together nearly 6,000 attendees from around the world. SCCM Congress attendees participated in a variety of educational sessions featuring presentations by experts across disciplines on a wide array of clinical and research topics, in hands-on workshops and interactive debates led by internationally renowned faculty.
Why did you decide to host the event in San Antonio?
The convention center expansion had ample exhibit and meeting space for the SCCM Congress. It was also very convenient for SCCM attendees to stay in hotels that were within easy walking distance to the convention center.
What surprised you the most about San Antonio?
The last time the SCCM Congress was held in San Antonio was in 2003. We were happy to see the variety of restaurants that had been added along the River Walk and in quaint neighborhoods close to the convention center and hotels.
What did your attendees seem to enjoy the most about San Antonio?
First-time attendees to San Antonio enjoyed the unique River Walk lined with restaurants and quaint hotels and stores, and the Pearl complex, in addition to a visit to the historic Alamo.
Was anybody particularly helpful?
The entire staff at the convention center and visitors bureau were very friendly and helpful.
What other types of groups would fit well with San Antonio?
Any group requiring ample meeting space at a convention center, with quick access to an adjoining headquarters hotel, would be a good fit in San Antonio.
Do you have any advice for planners bringing a meeting to San Antonio?
While the space at the convention center is plentiful, try to schedule similar events close together, in one part of the building. While we needed all the space in the building, it was difficult for the attendees to navigate through the space quickly.
Provide clear directions on how to get from one side of the building to the other.
Would you return?
The SCCM is considering a return in February 2028.