The American Academy of Ambulatory Care Nursing (AAACN) enjoyed a record-breaking conference attendance – of over 750 nurses – at the 37th Annual Conference, May 2-5, 2012, in Orlando, Florida. Nurses convened to strengthen their skills and explore the latest clinical, management, and leadership trends in ambulatory care and telehealth nursing. Topics focused on advancing practice and leadership and included enhancing quality and safety, the many settings and multiple roles of ambulatory care nurses, medical home models, and telephone triage.
Healthcare reform and its impact on the ambulatory care nurse was a hot topic throughout the conference and was the subject of both a general session and the town hall meeting. The town hall experience offered attendees the opportunity to share best practices and question an expert panel about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and other topics.
The pre- and post-conference workshops and educational opportunities also enjoyed record-setting attendance. Nurses learned to identify legal pitfalls and safeguard their practice, prepared for certification with the Ambulatory Care Nursing Certification Review Course, and polished their telehealth skills with the Telehealth Nursing Practice Core Course (TNPCC).
Conference Highlights: Highlights of this year’s conference included:
- Suzanne N. Wells, MSN, RN, was inducted as the 2012-2012 AAACN president.
- “Livin’, Laughin’, and Learning’…Through the Years,” the keynote address by Barbee Bancroft, MSN, RN, PNP, had attendees raving. Bancroft emphasized how important it is for nurses to maintain their health and balance, but did so with a humorous spin that kept attendees laughing.
- Attendees networked with colleagues, met with vendors in the packed exhibit hall, and viewed 50 poster presentations.
- The AAACN silent auction raised $4,500 for the association’s scholarship and research grant program.
Awards and Scholarships: The following awards were presented on Wednesday, May 2, during the opening ceremonies:
- President’s Above and Beyond Award (highest award, given to an individual who exceeds the expectations of a volunteer role): Carol Ann Attwood, MLS, AHIP, MPH, RN,C; Mayo Clinic, AZ.
- Excellence Awards (sponsored by the Anthony J. Jannetti, Inc. Nursing Economic$ Foundation, given to AAACN members who personify administrative and clinical excellence in ambulatory care):
- Administrative Excellence Award: Janet Fuchs, MBA, MSN, RN, NEA-BC; Cleveland Clinic
- Clinical Excellence Award: Janette Meier, RN; University of Colorado Hospital
- 2011 ViewPoint Writer’s Award (given for the outstanding article published in the association’s official newsletter, ViewPoint): Stanley Soria, RN, BC; Denver Health Rocky Mountain Poison and Drug Center, was recognized for his article, “Intimate Partner Violence in the Ambulatory Care Setting,” published in the May/June 2011 issue.
- Education Scholarships (awarded to help cover costs of tuition, books, and academic supplies): Dedria R. Tuck, RN, CTL; Carilion Clinic, Roanoke, VA ($1,500 scholarship)
- Conference Scholarships (Four scholarships presented to provide financial assistance to attend the AAACN conference):
- Deborah Byrne-Barta, Children’s Hospital, Philadelphia, PA
- Kathleen Bozek, Northern Westchester Hospital, Yorktown, NY
- Wanda Mayo, Amerigroup, Arlington, TX
- Dedria R. Tuck, Carilion Clinic, Roanoke, VA
- Research Grant: Pamela Sanford, MSN, RN-BC, CNS; Scott & White Healthcare, Temple, TX, received a research grant for the study, “Medication Adherence in Chronically Ill Patients.”
Online Library: Full conference attendees have indefinite online access to conference recordings and handouts in the AAACN online library. In addition, conference registration for each attendee includes online library access for two colleagues. Nurses who were unable to attend the conference can purchase access to the full conference in the online library, or they can purchase individual sessions at the end of June. For information about accessing conference content, visit www.prolibraries.com/aaacn.
2013 Conference: The AAACN 38th Annual Conference will be held April 23-25, 2013, at the Las Vegas Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.
[From the August/September 2012 issue of AnswerStat magazine]