While Superstorm Sandy made an attempt to put the kibosh on this year’s NAHAC Conference (National Association of Health Advocacy Consultants), she could not dampen the spirits, nor the passion or professionalism of this year’s gathering.
… proving, once again, that you can’t slow down this advocacy freight train.
While I understand that a handful of folks didn’t make the trip (some from storm-torn areas), the crowd was almost as large as it might have been if no storm ever tried to stand in the way. As it turned out, at least a half-dozen folks from the NYC / NJ / Southern Connecticut area made the effort to be there because the hotel had a hot shower and internet – which they didn’t have at home (yet!) The Hyatt was happy to accommodate.
My overall observation of the event?
That advocacy as a profession took a giant step forward, and that it cemented our position as a necessary service for patients and caregivers.
The speakers were excellent. From the many ways healthcare reform makes our services even more necessary (and provides some major holes for us to fill), to a proposal for some exciting new ways primary care can be delivered, to effective communications, to helping our clients understand how mind-body medicine can help them, to interfacing with case and care managers – my head was spinning in many new and exciting directions.
And then there was the networking. From “old” friends (keeping in mind that “old” means only a few years since we’ve only been around as a group that long!) to new friends – APHA members and someday members – and the other sponsors, all of whom believe so strongly in our advocacy missions, and are willing to provide the support we need, too.
If you didn’t have an opportunity to attend, try to find someone who did, and talk to him or her about it. Or, find a thread in the Forum and ask questions. See what their take-aways were. Learn how their heads are spinning with new ideas! And appreciate how they, too, could experience the many ways our work is becoming more recognized and respected.
Many thanks to the NAHAC conference committee, the speakers, and sponsors for creating this marvelous opportunity for us to grow and learn – and be great. Careers will soar, and lives will be saved. It doesn’t get better than that.
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