CSM 2016 Recap: Ride the Wave
Under dazzling blue skies and towering palm trees, Advanced Medical joined a lively bunch of therapy professionals in Anaheim, CA for CSM 2016. Attendance saw a dramatic spike (over 11k) from last year’s event with tropical temperatures and the starry trappings of Disneyland being the likely factors. Our magic happened at booth #1843, where a combination of distinctive giveaways (monogrammed mouse ears, hydro flasks, retro sunglasses) and expert travel therapy advice incited a swarming buzz of activity that went wire to wire. It’s suffice to say that booth #1843 quickly gained a reputation as the “fun booth”. Leading the charge was our new clinical director and university coordinator Melissa Jones who made her mark as an SLP traveling therapist mentor with us and now has made the jump to the “other side.” Joining her were the energetic and extraordinary recruiting duo of Codey Thalacker and Rob Wurst.
Resplendent in Minnie Mouse Ears (the men decked out in sorcerer mickey hats), Melissa used her experience as a travel therapist to bring unmatched credibility in painting an accurate picture for inquisitive students. Over and over we heard from students at the booth how refreshing it was to have a substantive conversation devoid of clichés regarding travel therapy. With tuition reward, comprehensive CEU platform, and extensive mentoring, the Advanced Medical New Grad Program continues to set the standard for professional development. Also joining us for the festivities were PT mentors Neil Patel and Ly Pham, who were able to balance out some coursework with quality time at the booth sharing their stories of life on the road with Advanced Medical. Did I mention the weather? Yes, probably 3 times already…but it is worth repeating: LA is pure perfection on the weather channel.
We also had the pleasure of dining out with our good friend Scott Jones from CEU 360. Scott powers our comprehensive CEU platform that has strengthened our commitment to continuing education and professional development. Dinner highlights on the trip included: dynamite jalapeño margarita’s at Roy’s, Cajun everything at the Jazz Kitchen, and the cheesy thrills of Medieval Times. I would be remiss if I didn’t mention the smooth retro crooning of Richard Cheese, yes seriously – that’s his name and he needs to be seen to be believed. He provided our contingent with an entertaining evening of music at Downtown Disneyland. On a side note, for those of you who have never visited Disneyland, it’s almost quaint in its comparison to Disney World. It’s compact and charming in a way that the sprawling Disney World cannot match.
On the larger stage (much as we like to think the event only took place at our booth), new initiatives like the “PT Transforms Gallery” that showcased scores of real stories demonstrating the transforming power of physical therapy were highly successful. In addition, Thursday and Friday night saw a record number of alumni gatherings from all corners of the country. The opening ceremonies was highlighted by an informative speech by Donald D.Straube (PT, PhD, NCS) representing the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties. Straube spoke about the critical role of best practices supported by evidence in a landscape rapidly moving towards value-based care models. The annual Linda Crane Lecture focused on the “art of caring”, in the move towards evidence-based practice. The well-regarded address was given by PT Julie Ann Starr. Another big event was the “build your career” reception for new APTA members. Advanced Medical has always worked in conjunction with the APTA national organization and state chapters to support new initiatives and encourage our therapists to get involved to shape the direction of the profession. The APTA is doing incredible work developing alternative payments models, fighting for an end to the therapy caps, and ensuring that physical therapy has a prominent seat at the table in the move towards value-based healthcare models. If CSM 2016 proved anything, its that the state of the profession is strong indeed. Advanced Medical would like to thank everyone who visited our booth and we look forward to continuing the conversation.
Until next time…