Welcome back to the Alliance Annual Conference! The energy in National Harbor, Maryland, is electric as the healthcare CPD community gathers once again in person. On Monday night, the conference opened with an awards ceremony honoring many individuals across the Alliance community for competitive awards, fellowship recognition, Almanac author of the year and more. Congratulations to the 2023 award recipients — view the full list of awardees here, and keep an eye on the Almanac throughout the year for deep-dive articles from the competitive award winners.
After the awards ceremony, conference attendees made their way to the exhibit hall for a welcome reception right on the harbor front. Attendees mingled with colleagues and exhibitors while enjoying appetizers and beverages to close out the first night of conference.
Are We Committed to DEI Progress?
Tuesday morning opened with a phenomenal and thought-provoking keynote from Russell Ledet, MD, PhD, MBA. Dr. Ledet, a U.S. Navy veteran, co-founded The 15 White Coats, an organization that propels underrepresented minority students to the next levels of education by providing inspiration and economic support. Dr. Ledet and Alliance 2023 Conference Chair Brian Thompson engaged in a fireside chat about the necessity of understanding diverse perspectives in healthcare CPD.
“CME will change when you change individually,” Ledet said to the audience. Ledet challenged attendees to educate themselves on what healthcare conditions look like in people of color as opposed to white people — even pain itself is not always taken seriously for Black patients and other patients of color. To care about making diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) progress from a CME perspective, Ledet said you must immerse yourself in the community you are serving. Build relationships so that your audience feels seen and heard. Acknowledge and learn from the mistakes you will inevitably make. Ensure diversity is represented in your CME activities. Take nuances into account when asking questions. Read, educate yourself, do your homework. Ledet knows that his colleagues are capable of educating themselves and asking genuine questions to expand their perspectives.
To continue this conversation beyond this keynote presentation, check out the following resources Dr. Ledet recommended: “Medical Apartheid: The Dark History of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans From Colonial Times to Present” by Harriet A. Washington; “The 1619 Project” on Hulu; and “Invisible Man” by Ralph Ellison. Plus, be sure to keep up with Dr. Ledet, as he produces films on the topic of DEI progress in healthcare, too.
The DEI conversations continued with a DEI Showcase featuring the topics of practical tools to incorporate DEI into your educational programs, filling the health disparities void with continuing professional development, and infusing DEI and anti-racism work into continuing education. This programming demonstrates the Alliance’s commitment to prioritizing DEI initiatives in the healthcare CPD space.
Other session highlights from Tuesday morning include mastering storytelling and the appropriate medical narrative, mapping educational strategies based on adult learning principles, renovating grant proposals (have you checked out the “Ask the Grantor” series?), and overcoming disclosure dilemmas (which you can hear more about on an upcoming episode of the Alliance Podcast!).
After lunch in the scenic exhibit hall, attendees gathered once again for sessions on medical writing, education and strategies for improving inclusive healthcare for communities including LGBTQ+, optimizing the employee and employer experience, question writing, and more. Plus, podcast guest Jim Morgante, PhD, presented “Assessing Assessments: Are Your Questions Any Good?” with Jason Olivieri, MPH. Listen back to Morgante’s podcast episode here.
Alliance Americana Celebration and Posters … and Surprise Guests
After Alliance members attended the Annual Business Meeting, attendees gathered back in the Riverview Ballroom to mingle with friends and exhibitors and visit the posters presentations during the Americana Celebration. Attendees were treated to special guests … the Washington Nationals’ very own president mascots! During every Nationals home game, George, Tom, Abe and Teddy hold a presidential race where they run around the baseball field. Teddy (Roosevelt) and Tom (Jefferson) were kind enough to stop by and spend some time with #Alliance23 attendees.
Even Racing President Teddy reads the Almanac!
Coming Up Next…
Don’t miss these #Alliance23 highlights throughout the conference:
- 5K Run sponsored by Talem Health, Wednesday, Feb. 8 at 6 a.m.
- “Be Indispensable: Focus CPD on Improving Patient Outcomes,” Wednesday, Feb. 8 at 8:30 a.m.
- “It’s My Life: Valuing the Patient Perspective,” Thursday, Feb. 9 at 8:30 a.m.
Keep Up the Conversation
Feeling inspired? Continue the conversation by contributing to the Almanac! Submit your article using this submission form, and learn more about sharing your work with the Almanac here.