Statement issued March 16, 2020: A message from AIHA CEO, Larry Sloan
I wanted to personally reach out to you regarding the current Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) situation as it relates to AIHce EXP 2020. First and foremost, the safety of our members and conference attendees is THE top priority. As of now, AIHce EXP will still be held as planned (no cancellation or postponement).
Please know we are vigilantly following and adhering to WHO and CDC guidelines about this pandemic and the impact it may have on our annual conference scheduled for early June. There continues to be an influx of new information each day. So in the interest of transparency, we have decided to share the following important messages with you, our valued customers, now:
1. Your Safety
The safety of our conference participants is paramount. We have a seasoned staff response team monitoring this evolving situation, and we are working closely with the Board of Directors to determine the best course of action.
2. AIHce EXP Will Go On As Scheduled, June 1 – 3 With PDCs Beginning May 30
We have concluded that for now, we plan to hold AIHce EXP 2020. We know many organizations are restricting or banning travel, and while we're optimistic the coronavirus will be better contained before the conference, we wouldn't be responsible event organizers if we weren't planning for every possibility. This is why we've decided to extend the Advance Registration rate deadline to Sunday, April 12 at 11:59 p.m. ET.
We believe that within the next few weeks, we will be able to make a more informed decision about whether we will host the conference and, if able to do so, how best to deliver our quality education to you. We will notify you of the decision no later than Thursday, April 16.
We will update this page as decisions are reached.
3. Free Resources
AIHA is making the PDF of our AIHA University Marketplace publication: The Role of the Industrial Hygienist in a Pandemic Guideline (valued at $65), available to you for free at this time. You may download it here. Members of the AIHA Biosafety & Environmental Microbiology Committee recently re-reviewed it and deemed the tools and principles of the book relevant and accurate.
If you are unable to attend or choose not to attend in person (due to travel restrictions or other concerns), we will convert your registration to one for the Virtual AIHce EXP. We will adjust AIHA's current refund policy based on the eventual status of the conference.
On behalf of the Board of Directors of AIHA and AIHce EXP staff, we are working harder than ever during this time to earn (and keep) your trust as a valuable source of education for occupational health and safety professionals worldwide.
If you have any questions, please email AIHA’s Managing Director of Global Meetings and Business Development, Bethany Chirico, at email@example.com.
Lawrence D. Sloan
Chief Executive Officer
Statement issued March 1, 2020
AIHce EXP is taking all developments concerning coronavirus disease (COVID-19) very seriously. At this time, there are no plans to postpone or cancel AIHce EXP 2020. We have received no cancellations from exhibitors at the event, and registrations are on pace with previous years. We will continue to monitor the situation and will be in discussion with health authorities and AIHA’s leadership. AIHce EXP will work to ensure the highest possible degree of hygiene, safety, and medical care at the conference as the health and safety of all our attendees is our highest priority.
Fortunately, there are only a limited number of confirmed cases in the United States. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) is working with state and local governments to implement aggressive measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus. In addition, there are several easy ways that we can all minimize the risk of exposure. As advised by The World Health Organization (WHO), these are the same basic steps we should be taking every day to help prevent the spread of illnesses such as the flu and the common cold:
- Wash your hands frequently. Keeping hands clean through improved hand hygiene is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. In addition, having hand sanitizer readily available is always a good idea.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your upper sleeve, not your hands. Put your used tissue in a waste basket and wash your hands after coughing or sneezing.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick, or who appear to have symptoms of a respiratory illness.
With continued aggressive good hygiene, we can all do our part to help keep everyone healthy. We will continue to provide updates as the situation develops and new information becomes available.
If you are unable to attend or choose not to attend in person, learn about the AIHce EXP refund policy. If your country’s travel restrictions prohibit you from attending the conference in Atlanta, consider registering for Virtual AIHce EXP.