During the financial crisis in Portugal, between 2010 and 2014, where public sector salaries sharply declined and the unemployment rate increased significantly, the APNEP took the following decisions:
- Members with more than 3 years of membership no longer pay fee (quota of €15 for professionals and €5 for students);
- All members were eligible for free registration at the APNEP Annual Congress.
These emergency measures have remained to the present day, although Portugal has issued a recovery in the economy.
With these measures, we increase the number of members every year (currently APNEP has 1870 members), and we have a growing the number of attendees at our annual event: 2663 attendees the last Congress.
These measures were only possible with the pharmaceutical industry support and a drastic reduction of the financial costs associated with the organisation of the APNEP Annual Congress.
During these years, the Congress has been organised in movie theatres, which allows the elaboration of an event with 8 rooms simultaneously operating at reduced costs.
All speakers were hosted in 2-star Hotel and the Congress secretariat was basically made with the help of very low-cost volunteers (students).
With these measurements, APNEP realised not only to maintain, but also to increase the number of members, even in times of crisis; and increase the number of attendees to a record level of 2663 in this year. Still, these measures did not significantly change the financial activity of the Association.
In moments of crisis, we should be very cautious about the spending of our members’ money.