Success in St. Louis: Health Care Conference/Business Institute Draws 500 More than 500 participants gathered in St. Louis April 5–6 for the 2008 ASHA Health Care Conference and Business Institute. Participants arriving a day earlier had the opportunity to attend the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation fundraiser and catch a baseball game between the St. Louis Cardinals and Washington Nationals at the ... ASHA News
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ASHA News  |   June 01, 2008
Success in St. Louis: Health Care Conference/Business Institute Draws 500
Author Notes
  • Amy Hasselkus, associate director of health care services in speech-language pathology, can be reached at ahasselkus@asha.org.
    Amy Hasselkus, associate director of health care services in speech-language pathology, can be reached at ahasselkus@asha.org.×
Article Information
ASHA News & Member Stories / ASHA News
ASHA News   |   June 01, 2008
Success in St. Louis: Health Care Conference/Business Institute Draws 500
The ASHA Leader, June 2008, Vol. 13, 1-18. doi:10.1044/leader.AN1.13082008.1
The ASHA Leader, June 2008, Vol. 13, 1-18. doi:10.1044/leader.AN1.13082008.1
More than 500 participants gathered in St. Louis April 5–6 for the 2008 ASHA Health Care Conference and Business Institute. Participants arriving a day earlier had the opportunity to attend the American Speech-Language-Hearing Foundation fundraiser and catch a baseball game between the St. Louis Cardinals and Washington Nationals at the newly remodeled Busch Stadium, a short walk from the conference hotel. The game was a relaxing—although somewhat chilly—start to an exciting weekend of learning and networking with colleagues from around the country.
Susan Miller opened the conference with an energizing discussion of how to communicate in personal and professional situations more clearly, effectively, and confidently. A speech-language pathologist, published author, and national communication consultant, Miller demonstrated the importance of posture, vocal tone, and message content in making an instant and lasting positive impression.
Since its inception in 2004, the health care conference has focused on offering current, practical, clinical information that participants can use in their day-to-day practices. This year was no exception and participants were often torn between concurrent sessions in four tracks—adult neurogenics, pediatrics, swallowing, and for the second year, the Business Institute.
Twenty-one faculty members offered discussions on a wide variety of topics, including aphasia groups, dysphagia teams, early identification of autism, treatment for acquired apraxia, esophageal swallowing disorders, infant feeding and swallowing, and augmentative and alternative communication for adults with aphasia. The complete conference schedule and faculty information is available on ASHA’s Health Care Conference. A conference anthology, which includes all of the presentations from the weekend, is available for purchase at “Shop ASHA” or by calling 888-498-6699.
Business Track
The Business Institute offered information on starting or operating a private practice and working in an administrative or managerial role in health care. The institute offered information valuable to the new manager and clinician entering private practice, as well as to those looking to hone their many years of experience. A session on developing a business plan, for example, was offered at the same time as a session on negotiating with private health plans. In addition, an attorney and a professor from a local business school presented on topics such as legal issues in hiring and firing, developing contracts, pricing services, and marketing. The roundtables were popular again this year, allowing participants to spend time with colleagues to discuss issues specific to their daily practice.
This year’s conference also featured an exhibit hall to enhance participants’ experience. Fifteen exhibitors attracted a constant flow of attendees looking for the latest resources. Exhibits included textbooks and materials from publishers, billing and documentation software, therapy supplies, and recruitment for positions in a variety of settings.
In addition to the exhibitors, several ASHA special interest divisions presented materials and answered questions about their specialties:
  • Division 1, Language Learning and Education

  • Division 2, Neurophysiology and Neurogenic Speech and Language Disorders

  • Division 3, Voice and Voice Disorders

  • Division 5, Speech Science and Orofacial Disorders

  • Division 11, Administration and Supervision

  • Division 13, Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia)

  • Division 15, Gerontology

  • Division 16, School-Based Issues

The successful combination of cutting-edge clinical information and business knowledge in one conference will be offered again next year, when the ASHA Health Care/Business Institute is held in Washington, D.C., on April 4–5, 2009. With more exhibits, opportunities for networking, and Capitol Hill visits, the conference continues to expand its offerings for the practicing SLP.
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June 2008
Volume 13, Issue 8