It gives me very great pleasure to welcome you to Saint Petersburg for the 30th Annual meeting of the World Society of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery.
As most of you know, the Society was founded in 1990 by the original pioneers in cardiac surgery, with the goal of having a truly international forum for the exchange of ideas and progress in clinical care and research. The annual meetings are therefore held in many parts of the world. The 26th annual meeting was in Cape Town, South Africa, and the 27th annual meeting in Astana, Kazakhstan. The 2018 meeting was held in Ljubljana, Slovenia, and last year’s meeting in Sophia, Bulgaria.
Every year, the steering committee of the Society, made up of the officers of the Society, the Past Presidents and the Regional Representatives, selects the host country for the annual meeting, three years in advance. The unanimous choice for the meeting in 2022 was Saint Petersburg.
Saint Petersburg is a historic and beautiful city, with wonderful hotels and restaurants. The 18th and 19th century architecture of the city and its environs is preserved virtually unchanged. It is listed by UNESCO on the World Heritage list as an area with around 4,000 outstanding individual monuments of architecture, history and culture. The Hermitage museum is a must to visit, as is the Winter Palace and Peterhof with its magnificent gardens. In all the city has 221 museums, 2,000 libraries, and more than 80 theatres.
It is an excellent choice for the meeting in 2022, and I encourage your participation. Please bring your families and plan to make time to visit the many magnificent attractions of this wonderful city.
I look forward to seeing you there.