Where’s the Beef?

the annual meeting of the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC)/the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), Washington

One of the better kept secrets of medical writing is the press room breakfast and lunch buffet.  We often rate meetings not only by the content and the newsworthiness but by the catering as well.  Being a vegetarian, meetings with any vegetarian meals rate highly with me, even more so if it’s not those grilled vegetable sandwiches with rubbery eggplant.

While medical organizations are under no obligation to feed us, most PR staff know all too well that readily-available food and a good supply of beverages are some insurance to keep reporters buzzing around.  That’s not to say that we go out of our way to cover meetings with little in the way of news but great meals.  Nor do we avoid meetings with a lot of good data but only a token gesture at nourishment, like a coffee station.  ICAAC-IDSA, I’m looking at you.

—Kerri Wachter

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