Roderik van Grieken has served as chairman and discussion leader at home and abroad every week for more than fifteen years. He is therefore one of the most experienced chairmen in the Netherlands. From multinationals to ministries and from the catering industry to high-tech. Roderik is founder of the Dutch Debate Institute (1998). He is also chairman of the jury that annually presents a Debate Prize to the best debater in the Dutch Parliament.
Christoph is professor of Medicine and chief of the division of nephrology and hypertension at the University Hospital of Würzburg. His areas of interest are metabolic disorders and cardiovascular outcomes in patients with diabetic kidney and other rare diseases. He has published more than 500 pubmed referenced scientific articles. Christoph is an executive officer of KDIGO (Kidney Disease Improving Global Outcomes) and co-chair of several guideline work group and controversy conferences. Furthermore, on the agenda of ERA EDTA congress Christoph is to be elected as ERA-EDTA President.
Tom Oostrom has been managing director of the Dutch Kidney Foundation since 2010. He started as head of the policy section in 2005. With the motto ‘Life comes first’ the Kidney Foundation gives everything to make sure kidney patients survive and their quality of life improves. Tom Oostrom learned from practice: he started out as a nurse. His drive is to make a real difference for kidney patients, to help make their lives livable. This is necessary, because a renal disease is severe and makes a deep impact in someone’s life.
Wim Sipma holds master degrees in Business Economics, Health Administration and Global Ebusiness Management. He has 30 years’ experience in marketing and strategy with a focus on health-care insurance. He started dialysing over 12 years ago and received his second transplant in 2015. He writes for the nationwide magazine of the Dutch Kidney Patients Association, works part-time as a researcher at the University Medical Center Groningen and is a PhD candidate at the Erasmus School of Health Policy & Management where he specializes in the creation of value in healthcare through patient involvement.
Henning Søndergaard is a psychologist with a Master's Degree from the University of Copenhagen, specializing in health psychology. He started home dialysis 8 years ago on a NxStage machine. He is currently working as a counsellor and teacher for the Danish Kidney Association where he also writes for their magazine regularly. He is patient editor for Journal of Renal Care, the scientific publication for the European Dialysis and Transplant Nurses Association, EDTNA. He consults several drug and equipment companies, working mostly on scientific studies as well as at conferences where he also speaks regularly.
William Withers (47) is Managing Director of Crystal Thought, a design, web and marketing agency. William started dialysis in 1992 and has been doing nocturnal home-haemo since 2009, his regime is 6 nights a week for 9 hours each time. William is a patient representative on the European Renal Advisory Board (ERBP) and Kidney Care UK, and has spoken at renal conferences all over Europe, as well as being involved with UK vascular access research groups. William has written articles for various renal publications to highlight the benefits of more frequent and longer duration dialysis
Fiona Loud has been Policy Director of Kidney Care UK since 2013 working with policymakers and others in campaigning for the opt-out law, improving access to transplantation and patient choice. Previously Director of the Kidney Alliance, she co-authored the review of kidney care, Kidney Health: Delivering Excellence. She works with many groups to improve care standards for kidney patients, such as dialysis choice or patient transport. She set up and chairs the UK Renal Registry patient council and been a member of many NICE kidney guideline groups. She is lay chair of Watford hospital organ donation committee and vice chair of her local kidney patient association at the Lister hospital. Fiona spent 5 years on dialysis after her kidneys failed, before a transplant from her husband in 2006. She is a Fellow of the British Renal Society and was one of the Health Service Journal Top 50 patient leaders.
Raymond Vanholder is nephrologist and published over 900 papers. He was chairman of the European Uremic Toxin Work Group (EUTox) and European Renal Best Practice (ERBP). He is past president of the European Renal Association – European Dialysis and Transplant Association (ERA-EDTA) and currently chairs the European Kidney Health Alliance (EKHA) and European Chronic Disease Alliance (ECDA).
Murray Sheldon is Associate Director for Technology & Innovation (FDA, USA). For many years Murray works in/for the medical device industry, leading device development projects and providing expert consultative services to numerous start-up innovative medical device development firms. Currently Murray leads the Medical Device Payer Communication Task Force, identifying methods to streamline the path from FDA approval to reimbursement.
Anna Prokupkova is ECL’s Advocacy & Project Manager responsible for coordinating ECL’s overall policy input into decision-making processes on EU level. Currently, she is actively involved in shaping Europe’s Beating Cancer Plan. Anna also coordinates the ECL Patient Support Working Group (PSWG) and acts as a liaison for the MEPs Against Cancer (MAC) Interest Group at the European Parliament.
Clemens van Blitterswijk is institute director at the MERLN Institute for Technology-Inspired Regenerative Medicine at Maastricht University. Clemens is internationally known for his pioneering work in tissue engineering, which aims to replace or regenerate diseased or damaged tissues through a combination of biology and engineering. Clemens contributed to more than 430 peer-reviewed published papers. Also he is founding father of RegMed XB and he is member of the Advisory Board of Neokidney. Clemens is also partner of Life Sciences Partners (LSP), one of Europe’s largest and most experienced healthcare investment firms.