Thanks to all of you for your contributions in dealing with the effects of this devastating and historic global pandemic. Jumping into the battle with insufficient knowledge and insufficient supplies and equipment is emblematic of who we are as caregivers of children. APSA has been active on several fronts to educate us in the care of patients and to provide support to pediatric surgeons both for education and for their own personal wellness.
Although we are all disappointed that in order to keep our patients and providers healthy, we have been forced to cancel our Annual Meeting in May of this year, the resilience of our members in turning disappointment into opportunity can be seen in this communication. We will turn the May meeting into a virtual meeting, and it will be crafted to meet the needs of our community. Dr. David Powell, Dr. Casey Calkins and Dr. Todd Ponsky are leading this digital effort, and their knowledge and creativity will produce an experience that will exceed expectations. I feel proud that the first meeting of the second fifty years will use technology unthinkable to our founders.
- To the extent that pediatric surgeons may have time on their hands due to elective surgery cancellations, we will begin streaming content from the best and most relevant sessions of the APSA 50th Anniversary Meeting. Access will be free.
- In order to be most sensitive to the time demands currently being made on our presenters and learners, we will be distributing the 2020 Annual Meeting content as a combination of prerecorded and live virtual events to start May 14.
- Program Committee Chair Casey Calkins will begin reaching out to presenters immediately to adapt their sessions to take advantage of the virtual format.
- APSA would like to be a resource in these challenging times. The APSA Quality and Professional Development committees have developed a pediatric surgeon focused COVID-19 webpage. (Bookmark it now!) Access is free, and we are eager for you to contribute your experiences to this resource.
- The APSA Wellness committee is working on strategies to remain healthy in these stressful times.
- We encourage you to share pictures and videos of how you’re adapting. Use #pedsurgresilience in your own Twitter posts or post to APSA’s account. Not on social media? It’s a good time to join the community; learn how.
These are unique and difficult times. We are here to support you, but we are also receptive to your input and advice. We want all of you to be proactive in contributing to the success of our actions through and beyond this current challenge.
Stay safe and take care,
Joseph P. Vacanti, MD, President
and the APSA Board of Governors
John H.T. Waldhausen, MD, President-Elect
Ronald B. Hirschl, MD, Immediate Past President
Max R. Langham, Jr., MD, Secretary
Mike K. Chen, MD, Treasurer
Jessica K. Kandel, MD, Governor
Peter W. Dillon, MD, Governor
Edward M. Barksdale, MD, Governor