Dear Friends and Colleagues,

The South West Asian chapter (SWAC) of the Extracorporeal Life Support Organisation (ELSO) was established in 2013 with the full support of the ELSO Steering committee. To this chapter belongs the Middle East and a big part of Asian countries. The SWAC ELSO creation now provides a platform for the various ECMO Programmes established or nascent in this vast and fast-developing part of the World to exchange knowledge, best practices, data and experience. The first two SWAC ELSO Annual Conferences were held in India.

To reflect the geographical and multi-cultural scope of the chapter, and to make an analogy with the symbol of exchange of the Olympic Games, it was decided to carry the ECMO torch around the region, eventually setting its flame in 2016 in one of the most prominent and active Gulf countries.

Our SWAC region further faces the specific challenges and opportunities of fast growing demographics, as well as faster growing healthcare expectations. It is also confronts some medical situations that the more tamed countries of North America and Europe, for instance, are less subject to, but for which ECMO can be a life-saving technique (scorpion stings, snake bites, substance poisoning, etc.).

We warmly welcome you to enjoy this exciting event at a beautiful location.