Monday, September 27, 2010

A rare convergance of meetings...

When I was a kid, I was fascinated by rare convergences of planets.

Maybe that's why last week was so special (maybe there were other reasons, too).

On Thursday, PHA's Corporate Committee met, focusing on the major agenda item of how industry can help PHA build greater awareness of PH among the American public.

This was followed on Friday by PHA's Scientific Leadership Council meeting. Providing guidance and direction for PHA's complex array of scientific and medical programming and interest, this leadership group's agenda is always dynamic and wide-ranging.  Last week's meeting took us through discussions and decisions on everything from expansion of PHA's research program, analysis of an investigator training program, new developments related to our medical journal, and consideration of a new prostacyclin the pros and cons of defining expert PH centers, recommendations to Social Security on how they handle PH disability issues, discussion of next steps for PHA's Medical Education Fund programs and the rapid evolution of our pediatric programming. As always, it was a busy and fruitful day.

But that wasn't the end of the week.  On Saturday we had much more in Towson, Maryland.  With their new Chair, Louise Durst RN, PHA's PH Resource Network Executive Committee met to plan their next steps.  This group within PHA, now composed of over 900 nurses, pharmacists, respiratory therapists and other allied health professionals has been growing rapidly.  their leaders discussed their 2011 Symposium, changes in their strategic plan and support of various PHA patient and medical programs.

Simultaneously in the same hotel, PHA's Baltimore/Washington area regional "On the Road" patient Conference took place.  Almost 250 attended a full day of programming that included sessions on current treatments, diagnosis, impact on family and relationships, eating better, traveling with PH, exercise and yoga and a whole lot more.  All the committee planners (led by Charles Burger, M.D. of Mayo-Jacksonville) and speakers were volunteers, including many nationally and internationally known physicians.

Well, I wish I had time to write about the great people I met and the stories I saw and heard but there's not much time to put our feet up. Our next regional "On the Road" Conference is next Saturday in Dallas and I'll be preceding that with a Thursday 30 City Medical Education program led by Gregory Elliott, MD in Provo, Utah.  More on that next week!

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