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Manabu Ito


AO Spine Asia Pacific


I would like to send my season’s greetings to all of you at the beginning of the year 2021. I hope everyone is in good health and safe under the current pandemic of COVID-19. I assume that all our members are still suffering and under difficult situations to run your own clinical practice.

Looking back at the year 2020, our activities started by the first combined meeting of our board and council members at Chengdu, China, in early January just two weeks after the news of outbreak of COVID-19 in Wuhan. Though Chengdu is not so close to Wuhan, we were enforced to change our schedule especially to social events outside the venue. We kept staying the hotel all the time on January 10 and 11 during the entire meeting. Even though we felt some fear of unknown virus spreading from a local city in China, the first joint meeting achieved a great success with sharing new ideas and hopes among the participants about our future directions and activities of AO Spine Asia Pacific. I really thank to all the participants who traveled from all the parts of Asia Pacific region for their active participation and dedication to our community.

Due to the pandemic of COVID-19, many AO related international and local meetings were cancelled such as Global Spine Congress in Rio de Janeiro, Spineweek in Melbourne and many other national level meetings. The virus made our face-to-face events impossible and enforced us to change the strategies on education events in the entire region. To compensate the loss of on-site education events, we created our online education program in early March 2020, which we called “ONED” program in Asia Pacific. The “ONED” program consists of 5 components such as in-League program, Case-based 3D Bone Model Online Course, Inter-Fellow Webinar, Council Webinar and Hang-out of the Week Webinar. Despite the sudden change to our education platform, all online meetings were well attended by our members. Overall, we had 103 event days, 415 faculty involved and 17,049 participants for our events in 2020. I would like to show my sincere gratitude to all the faculty members and participants to make these events successful.

As to the membership, as of December 2020, the total number of paid members in Asia Pacific region was 2,225, which was a 6.4% increase comparing to the previous year and still the number one region in the whole world. I am proud that more new members joined our community even under this difficult situation with COVID-19.

For the year 2021, it is still not certain whether we will be able to meet each other on site. It is sure, however, that we will be able to meet and learn from each other in different ways and make our interactions more active than ever. Please stay safe and healthy under this tough condition and get together sometime and somewhere in 2021.

This allows unlimited possibility of innovation on digital education ideas

Online Education


stand for AO Spine Asia Pacific

ONED Strategy 2020


Collaboration, Integration, Partnership


AO Spine Asia Pacific Regional Strategy



2020 Activities Highlights


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