by Brendon Nafziger
, DOTmed News Associate Editor | March 02, 2011
From the March 2011 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
It’s nearly springtime, which means the Association of periOperative Registered Nurses’ annual gathering is just around the corner.
Touted as the biggest conference in the world for perioperative nurses and the largest surgical products trade show in the United States, the AORN’s 58th Congress draws nearly 10,000 attendees (about half of them nurses) for seven days of educational sessions, association business and networking.
This year, the congress runs March 18-24 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia.
The show organizers said they’re building off current AORN President Charlotte Guglielmi’s theme of Freedom to Be by giving attendees greater flexibility to meet their continuing education requirements.
For instance, new to the show this year is the “Education Hub,” a room where attendees can listen to speakers and view PowerPoint slides streamed live to their computer. If the session isn’t appropriate, the attendee can then switch to one of the other three talks being given. Snacks and drinks are also available for purchase, so operating room nurses can relax and sip coffee while earning continuing education contact hours, AORN said.
Keynote speakers include Dr. Richard M. Satava, a surgeon and futurist who helped develop the first surgical robot, and who will speak about technological changes in surgery, and Lee Woodruff, best-selling author and wife of Bob Woodruff, the ABC News anchor seriously injured in a 2006 roadside bombing in Iraq.
Nearly 500 companies will also be on hand to show off the latest surgical supplies. Examples include Compression Therapy Concepts’ “green” compression system, with a solar-powered pump and a garment made of biodegradable materials.
And this year brings a change to the organization’s voting procedure. Now, all eligible members can vote electronically for officers, the board of directors and other leadership positions, AORN said.
William Duffy is set to receive the Award for Excellence in Perioperative Nursing. This award, which recognizes excellence in OR nursing, has been given annually since 1982 and is one of 15 individual awards to be handed out at the show.
While the individual award winners have already been announced, the winners of the local chapter awards won’t be revealed until March 23. Also that evening, AORN Foundation, the charity wing of the organization, will host its benefit dance, Denim and Diamonds.
AORN by the numbers
Attendees last year: 9,702
Professional attendees (nurses and nurse managers): 4,917
Companies exhibiting: 494
Number of staff nurses attending: 1,314
Number of nurse managers/coordinators: 1,300