SPS 2020 Annual Meeting: COVID-19 Update


June 8, 2020

We are excited to announce that after detailed analysis and discussions with key stakeholders regarding the impact COVID-19 will have on our 2020 Annual Meeting, the Board of Directors determined that the most responsible decision for the Society is to host the Meeting as a Virtual Event.  The virtual event will be held over the original dates with the main content to be presented on September 14–17, 2020. The online agenda will be updated as soon as possible to reflect any changes in the schedule.

We look forward to sharing more information with you as it is finalized and ask for your patience as we make this transition. We encourage you to please visit our FAQs page in the meantime. 


May 21, 2020

SPS continues to monitor the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact it may have on our 2020 events. We realize that during this time of uncertainty, many of our members and colleagues want stability and concrete answers as to what may happen with the SPS Annual Meeting this Fall.  While we cannot provide any final decision today, we can provide you with transparency into what is taking place behind the scenes to enable the Board of Directors to make the most responsible decision for the Society.

Here is what we are working on:

  • Created a Task Force with representatives from each of our stakeholder groups to assess the impact of COVID-19 on the Annual Meeting and potential paths forward; Task Force will review and recommend contingency plans for leadership to consider should we not be able to proceed with a face to face meeting
  • Reviewed the Society’s contracts and legal obligations related to the 2020 Annual Meeting
  • Investigating measures to have a safe face to face meeting in our current environment (social distancing, sanitation protocols, masks, etc.)
  • Reviewed hypothetical reduced attendance at the Annual Meeting and financial impact to the Society
  • Added COVID-19 related questions during abstract submissions and speaker confirmations to reduce follows ups if we need to pivot from a face to face meeting
  • Created a COVID-19 Annual Meeting impact survey to gather feedback from attendees and members
  • Monitoring company travel policies and country travel policies/bans/border closures
  • Investigating technologies to support a non-traditional (virtual/digital) Annual Meeting
  • Reviewing financial impact of alternate meeting formats and cancellations on the Society’s yearly budget and strategic initiatives
  • Working to enhance our products and services to meet members’ needs during this time (online education, networking, SP Chats etc.)

While this is an abbreviated list of the actions we are currently taking, please know that we are working hard to make decisions early, communicate with our Members and above all continue to be a platform where our colleagues can share and learn from each other in the best possible outlets.

We want to thank everyone in advance, our supporters, exhibitors, vendors, presenters, members and attendees, for your continued and unwavering support of the Society.  We look forward to updating you again in a few weeks’ time.


Thank you for your understanding and patience,

Krystle Correll

SPS Executive Director



March 18, 2020

SPS is monitoring the COVID-19 pandemic and the impact it may have on our future events. Leadership will continue to review the guidelines and recommendations made by relevant public health agencies, including the World Health Organization, Public Health Agency of Canada, and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, as well as relevant government policies.

As of today, March 18, we are planning to proceed with our Annual Meeting and DSP Exam in September.  Should the situation change in the months before the Meeting, we will communicate our plans with you expediently.  If it becomes apparent that most of our attendees will not be able to participate in an in-person meeting due to restrictions (government or institutional), we are investigating options to share the Annual Meeting content with registrants in a virtual format as well as other ways we can create a meaningful and interactive environment for our registrants and vendors.

We realize these are unique times and want to assure you that your safety and health comes first.  We will do everything we can to be flexible during this time, but should you have any questions or concerns please reach out to me personally.  We will plan to send out another update in about one month (Mid-April) or sooner if needed.


Thank you for your understanding and patience,

Krystle Correll

SPS Executive Director

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