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2014 SPS conference

Hosting the 2013 Society for Pediatric Sedation Conference

Dr. ReynoldsBy Jason Reynolds, MD
2013 SPS Conference Program Chair

This year, Texas Children’s Hospital, in Houston, Texas had the honor of hosting the 2013 Society for Pediatric Sedation (SPS) conference.  It was a privilege to serve as the program chair and I want to thank the conference planning committee, the Board of Directors, Ruggles Service Corporation, and all the outstanding faculty that helped make this year’s conference a success.  The attendees included approximately 250 from not only the U.S. but also England, Australia, Israel, Pakistan, Qatar and Canada.  We had representation from medicine, dentistry, nursing, child life specialists and several other allied health fields.  As such we continued the tradition of a multidisciplinary collaboration with the common goal of promoting safe, high-quality care, innovative research, and quality professional education.

The focus of the annual meeting was “New Frontiers: The Future of Pediatric Sedation.”   Appropriately, the conference began with Mr. John Nickens, Vice President of Texas Children’s Hospital, who gave an outstanding presentation entitled “Healthcare reform and what it means for your sedation service.”  This was followed by an insightful presentation by Thomas Shaw, MD, regarding drug shortages and how we should prepare for more problems that may be on the horizon.

Lowell Clark, MD started the second morning session with an informative presentation about the effect of sedatives on the upper airway and described interventions to manage and avoid problems.  The morning session ended with “Sedation Year in Review,” which was moderated by Joe Cravero, MD.  Presentations were given by Jim Hertzog, MD, Michael Mallory, MD, and Janey Phelps, MD.

The oral abstract presentations took place mid-day on Monday and the session was moderated by Jim Hertzog, MD.  Four excellent oral abstract presentations were discussed.  Katie Hengstenberg, RN at Texas Children’s Hospital, received the non-physician award.  The physician-in-training award was received by Hiba Khankan, MD from Akron Children’s Hospital.  More than 20 abstracts were presented this year.

Monday evening featured a dinner and tour of Texas Children’s Hospital.  It provided an opportunity to show how Texas Children’s has incorporated sedation care among the various medical specialties.  The dinner was held at the newly-open Pavilion for Women, which is an integrated model of care unlike any other in the country.

Tuesday’s session began with Nancy Glass, MD who presented “Sedation Disasters and Closed Claims Analysis.”  This session emphasized that there is still much work to be done to ensure that all children have access to safe sedation care.  The following session was presented by Jennifer Arnold, MD who is an attending neonatologist, medical director of the simulation center, and co-star of the hit reality series “The Little Couple.”  She spoke about designing a system to detect latent threats to patient safety in the hospital setting.  The morning session concluded with presentations about sedation in the dental office, by Alan Milnes, DDS, and last year’s program chair, Anne Stormorken MD, on procedural pain coordination throughout the hospital.

One of the many highlights this year was a keynote presentation given by Dean Andropoulos, MD, Chief of Anesthesiology at Texas Children’s.  He presented a comprehensive overview of the science behind anesthetic neurotoxicity and what research is being done to help guide our practice as we move forward.  The Joseph P. Cravero, MD Leadership Award was presented to our past president Mick Connors, MD, who in addition to helping steer the Society on its present course, has been a pioneer in showing the integral connection between quality patient care and a robust and accessible sedation service.

A discussion of this year’s conference would not be complete without mention of the SPS Sedation Provider Course.  This year we offered both a pre- and a post-conference course, hosted by the Texas Children’s Hospital Simulation Center.  Special thanks to Corrie Chumpitazi, MD, Greg Hollman, MD and members of the Provider Course committee.

Finally, a number of outstanding breakout sessions were included in the program this year.  This has been popular in years past and allows conference attendees to personalize their educational experience.  This year was no different.  Overall, the feedback I received about the Conference was overwhelmingly positive. This is a result of all the faculty and people behind the scenes that make a conference like this possible.  I want to thank everyone for the opportunity to serve in the role of program chair and to showcase Houston at the 2013 SPS Conference.  I look forward to seeing everyone next year in Charleston.

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