Οn June 23 & 24, we took a fresh new approach to the SNF Nostos Conference. In collaboration with journalism nonprofit iMEdD (the incubator for Media Education and Development) and with integral participation by young people coming from different fields, countries, and perspectives, we tried to create an open, interactive, and dynamic two-day event for all. As part of this effort, we created the SNF Nostos Youth Advisory Committee—a group of young people that offered space for open dialogue, for listening to young people’s concerns and opinions on health-related issues, and for inviting them to help shape the program of the SNF Nostos Conference.
We discussed the progress of the SNF Health Initiative and the core values that underpin all its individual projects, including ensuring access to high-quality health services for all, harnessing the power of public-private partnerships, and implementing an open, transparent, and participatory development process. Through the lens of the initiative, we examined a range of issues—from the design and development of internationally leading public hospitals to the empowerment of nursing staff and the importance of mental health as an integral part of our overall health. A Template for Future Hospitals, an exhibition featuring architectural models of the three new hospitals designed by Renzo Piano Building Workshop included in the Initiative was also on display.
We touched on major issues such as bioethics, global social inequality in health, and the role of doctors in war zones, an issue highlighted by the war in Ukraine. We also brought to the fore less discussed but equally important issues, such as scientific journalism, the use of psychedelics in mental health treatments, robotics, and the future of medicine as shaped by new technologies.
The conversation inevitably expanded, deepened, and flowed beyond the event venues. Through parallel activities and interactive exhibitions, visitors, as active participants, were able to engage in sports games in a virtual reality environment, watch a unique kind of basketball game, browse an exhibition by photographer Thodoris Nikolaou dedicated to mental health, and explored a global health data map created by Johns Hopkins University.
This year, the SNF Nostos Conference was designed so that everyone is able to be heard, especially young people, since the future of health must be of their concern as well.