What is Congress Planning?
Congress Planning in the context of the pharmaceutical industry refers to planning for the company presence at medical congresses. This is usually done at a brand or franchise level and starts with deciding on which congresses the company wants to have a presence at and to what extent. It could involve many tasks, especially at large international congresses, including work by the HCP marketing team on promotional aspects (such as the brand/franchise booth(s), meetings with key opinion leaders (KOLs), purchase of banners or other promotional materials to be distributed at the congress, etc. The Medical team may also have tasks including setting up and running a Medical Information booth, continuing education sponsored sessions, satellite symposia, meetings with KOLs, etc. Advocacy and Public Affairs team members may also set up meetings with patient organizations. Advisory boards are also frequently done during major meetings and may be held in the evenings following conclusion of the meeting agenda for a given day. From a logistical standpoint all of this could require planning on renting meeting space, accommodations for employees or experts that the company may be contracting with for specific activities, etc.
Congress planning for major meetings can last several months and may include several weeks of cross-functional meetings leading up to the event to communicate within the company on what is planned for the presence at the congress.