Cardiology’s conference call

It’s late January and conference season is warming up.

The Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS) is kicking off its annual gathering, this year in San Diego. The Tech-Con portion, co-sponsored with the American Association of Thoracic Surgery, precedes the annual meeting, which is scheduled for Jan. 26-28.   

STS planners have lined up a mix of clinical, practice management and policy-related topics. They include scientific presentations on everything from arrhythmia to lung transplantation to sessions on patient safety, Medicare payments and workforce issues.

The appropriate STS committees keep a keen eye on professional issues for their members. If you haven’t read “Seconds Count,” our cover story on renegotiating contracts, you may want to take a look. Frank L. Fazzalari, MD, MBA, chair of the STS practice management workforce and chief of cardiothoracic surgery at Crittenton Hospital in Rochester, Mich., offered salient advice to help physicians position themselves during contract talks.

Bottom line: You cannot start thinking too soon about building your case, using quality metrics and hard data to demonstrate your worth to the hospital or healthcare system.

The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association will hold their annual International Stroke Conference Feb. 11-13 in Nashville, Tenn. The conference will include 18 late-breaking oral presentations and 36 late-breaking science posters. Expect updates on MR CLEAN (Multicenter Randomized Clinical trial of Endovascular treatment for Acute ischemic stroke in the Netherlands), which showed a benefit with intra-arterial treatment and usual care over usual care alone for certain strokes.

March is the American College of Cardiology’s time to shine with its annual scientific session. It is a biggie, covering the gamut of cardiovascular subspecialties as well as sessions for managing careers, practices and the evolving healthcare environment. The event runs March 14-16 in San Diego.

These conferences are always enlightening. Look for a preview of upcoming events and late-breaking trials soon.

Candace Stuart

Editor, Cardiovascular Business