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AAPA! 2017, Las Vegas- 50 Years of Our Profession.

Attendees of APSPA annual business meeting, Las Vegas, 2017

 

APSPA Annual Business Meeting.

We had our Annual Business Meeting on May 17th, 2017 in Las Vegas. It was well attended, and I personally thank everyone who made an effort and joined us that evening.

We had three PA Students in attendance, all of them were 2nd year students who will be graduating shortly, and are very excited to pursue a career in the Plastic Surgery field.

We had other veterans who often attend meetings as well as some new faces.

Inessa Shlifer presented her Power Point with a  focus on our website, conference attendance, and presenting lectures by PA's at the ASPS Conferences.

Currently our website is well constructed and relatively easy to navigate. That said it still has room for improvement and changes. The Board of Directors is dedicated to spending time to learn to use it to its full capacity.

Conference attendance while important, is not always possible for some members. We have busy schedules, our employers are not always willing to pay for us to attend, and we have to decide which ones to go to, since there are a good number of professional conferences available to PA's. I spoke to many PA's that attended the Las Vegas AAPA Conference, and the majority said the two main driving factors to attend were to connect with other PA's, and to celebrate 50 Years of our Profession.

We talked about making our presence noticeable at the ASPS Annual Conferences. This year it will be in Orlando, FL and we hope to develop connections with ASPS schedule organizers and present a few lectures by PA's. In the past we have had a very good experience, and we are working on topics that would be interesting for Plastic Surgery Fellows and Surgeons. Kristina Marsack is our new liaison to ASPS, and will be making those connections -- we should all think about topics and present them to her for review.

Kristen Costa presented her Treasurer Report, stressing the importance of doing a membership drive by sending postcards to our past members, including PA Students. Also she recommended to get a list of PA's practicing in Plastic Surgery from AAPA membership documents and mail postcards to those PA's as well. Kristen gave us a brief summary of what was going on in the HOD and what is waiting for us PA's in the future.  We talked about topics up for voting and took polls to help guide Kristen as to how to vote while representing us.  A majority of attendees felt that we as PA's are ready to make a strong statement to the NCCPA to make constructive changes to the PANRE, exam and have PA's added to their certifying board as well. We also agreed that taking PANRE is important, but that the exam may need to be modified and made less stressful on PA's while they get ready for their recertification.

Las Vegas is a fun city that never sleeps, just like New York City. AAPA made a great choice to celebrate its 50th Anniversary in Las Vegas with PA's gathering from all over the country, and the world. It's great to see the young generation of PA Students attending the conference, with their excitement and enthusiasm for the profession. At the Challenge Bowl, the Ballroom was packed with students cheering on their classmates, representing numerous PA programs from schools across the country. Our Past and Present Presidents were conducting this affair, sitting at the panel and it was enjoyed by participants and attendees.

We had a great Key Note Speaker - Dr. Zubin Damania, who is smart, talented, entertaining and ahead of his time. His presentation was equally knowledgeable, entertaining and personal. He laid a few key points out on how important it is to think outside of the box and gave his perspective on the Health Care Industry. We listened to his musical clips, which you can find on YouTube by searching his name. At the end he offered attendees to take selfies with him. The line was out the door. He was determined to give everyone a chance to have a photo with him and stayed there as long as he could. I was one of them, we hugged each other, I gave him my Thank You for reaching out to people, and we took a series of selfies.

We had a good variety of lectures covering medicine, surgery and other aspects of health care. The AAPA website is interactive and easy to navigate through lectures, evaluations and log in processes. By the time a lecture was over, and the evaluation was done, you were ready for the next session. For those of us who are not so slick with media, the Huddle is there to help in every way, working around the clock from morning to evening, Monday through Friday.

Las Vegas has a great variety of shows that cater to all ages, tastes, and moods. This was my first trip to Vegas and I wanted to catch the most I could,  considering that the priority was for our Conference. The weather was great- not too hot, comfortable in the evening, and a lot of sun. The only cold places were the Conference Ball Rooms where we sat for lectures. We had a great number of PA's participating in the 5 K Run/Walk, and all the participants were excited. The organizers did an excellent  job cheering everyone on in their run. As we finished, we would stay and cheer on the  others until the last participant crossed the line. At the end we took a group photo in celebration.

AAPA did everything to make our experience as smooth as possible, as they have in the past tried to make every trip to a Conference worthwhile.

Our next AAPA Conference will be in New Orleans and we would love to see you there. We are going to have our Annual Business Meeting in New Orleans, and of course we will have a great time there.

 

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