Welcome from the Program Chair

Dr. LalwaniBy Kirk Lalwani, MD, FRCA, MCR
Program Chair

On behalf of the planning committee and the board of directors of SPA, I am excited to welcome you to Colorado Springs! This year’s 'Pediatric Anesthesiology' meeting will be hosted by the Society for Pediatric Anesthesia (SPA) in conjunction with the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Section on Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine at the beautiful Broadmoor resort. This is the first time the meeting will be held in Colorado. Colorado Springs is famous for the US Air Force Academy, and for one of the nation’s three Olympic Training Centers. It nestles close to Pike’s Peak, one of Colorado’s 50+ `fourteeners’, or peaks over 14,000 feet in height. Pike’s Peak was named after the American explorer Zebulon Pike who described the mountain in 1806, but actually failed to make the summit. It was also the inspiration for Katharine Lee Bates to write the poem ‘America’, which was eventually combined with the music of church organist Samuel Ward and released as the popular patriotic song ‘America the Beautiful’ in 1910.

`Pediatric Anesthesiology’ will offer up to 28.25 CME credits and 3 hours of ABA MOCA Part II Patient Safety credits for attendees. In addition, those who attend the Congenital Cardiac Anesthesia Society or the Society for Pediatric Pain Management meeting on Thursday will earn additional CME credits. A PALS certification course will also be offered on Thursday. PBLDs (a total of 42) will be presented each day of the meeting, and several workshops will cover the practical aspects of clinical anesthesiology, education, quality improvement and research.

The meeting commences on Friday with a general session on `Regional Anesthesia’, which is an appealing mix of pure science and practicality. The highlight is a lecture on neuraxial additives by Dr. Tony Yaksh, Ph.D., Professor of Anesthesiology and Pharmacology, UC San Diego, who is a legend in the field of pain research and the first non-anesthesiologist recipient of the ASA Award for Excellence in Research in 1994, amongst many other awards. The clinical aspect of the session will cover neonatal spinals, and truncal nerve blocks. We follow with `High and Dry in the Centennial State’ encompassing reviews of altitude medicine and exercise physiology as a nod to the dizzying altitude of the surrounding peaks and the Olympic Training Center.

The afternoon begins with the AAP session and the Robert M. Smith Award, which will be presented to Dr. Lynne Maxwell, associate director of the Division of General Anesthesiology at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia for her efforts to advance the field pediatric anesthesiology. Following this, the AAP Advocacy lecture by David J. Schonfeld, Director of the National Center for School Crisis and Bereavement, will tackle the hidden burden carried by families and caregivers in the aftermath of a crisis. This will be followed by a `Cardiac Refresher’ session that tackles the management of long QT syndrome, pacemakers, implantable defibrillators, and ECMO. The final session of the day entitled `The ABC of CAB’ begins with an update of resuscitation and the new PALS guidelines, followed by an interactive and lively `Difficult Airway Debate’, whose three presenters will offer dueling opinions to stimulate an engaging and lively discussion with the audience. The day ends and the evening begins at a reception with our exhibitors.

Saturday commences with a `Quality and Safety’ session that covers two important areas in patient safety; the types of cognitive errors, and the new I.S.O. standards for medical small bore tubing connectors that are currently being phased into practice. This will be followed by the Oral Presentations and Abstract Awards, and the walk around Poster/Discussion session. After lunch, the AAP `Ask the Experts’ panelists will discuss two difficult skin problems, epidermolysis bullosa, and pediatric burns. The concluding session of the day deals with `Anesthesia and Endocrine Disorders’, in which speakers will describe anesthesia for pituitary surgery and its attendant perioperative complications, thyroid disease, and stress dose steroid replacement for surgery.

Sunday begins with a `Hot Topics' session that covers MOCA 2.0 and the American College of Surgeons Standards for Children’s Surgical Care. This is followed by an educational session that addresses `Teaching and Learning across the Generational Gap'. The session opens with a debate to consider whether millennials are unique and need to be taught differently. The second part of this session features Dr. Edward Nemergut, the founder of OpenAnesthesia.org, who will discuss `Technological Innovations for Teaching and Learning'. The CRNA symposium will also be held concurrently on Sunday morning. Last but never least, the ever popular 'Jeopardy' brings the session and the meeting to a close.
A good workshop is worth many thousand words. This year sees the return of advanced ultrasound-guided regional anesthesia, techniques of peripheral vascular access, the difficult pediatric airway (all offered twice at the meeting), transthoracic and transesophageal echocardiography, acupuncture, fetal interventions, and designing effective PBLDs. The research workshop will describe strategies for starting and maintaining a research career. First time workshops will cover the practicalities of creating a pediatric perioperative surgical home, and the implementation of quality improvement and performance management processes.

Helen Keller said it best: "Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much." This meeting would not be possible without the enthusiasm and cheerful hard work of many. I would like to thank the Education Committee members and our meeting planning 'shadows' (Melissa Brooks Peterson, Kasia Rubin and Daniel Roke) for their suggestions and assistance that both inspired and tied up loose ends. My co-conspirators on the meeting planning committee deserve great credit for their tireless efforts: Inger Aliason, PBLD coordinator; John Fiadjoe, Assistant Program Chair and Workshop Coordinator; AAP Section, Joe Tobias and Rita Agrawal; Randy Flick, Education Committee Chair; the ever resourceful Kim Battle, our association manager. My sincere thanks to all of them for assembling what I anticipate will be an outstanding meeting.

We hope to see you all in Colorado Springs!

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