Not so Basic Basics

AACC Annual Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo 2014 - July 28-Aug 1 - Chicago

In This Issue...

Winter's Wisdom

Dr. Winter making typically insightful remarks

On the surface, dysnatremia and iron deficiency may seem like very basic topics for today's laboratorians, but distinguished speaker Dr. William Winter of the University of Florida in Gainesville will demonstrate in two Annual Meeting Short Courses why that is not the case.

In Challenges and Controversies in the Diagnosis and Management of Dysnatremia (74106), Dr. Winter and Dr. Sutirtha Chakraborty of Peerless Hospital and BK Roy Research Centre in Kolkata, India, will explore the most common electrolyte disturbance encountered in hospitals, which remains notoriously challenging to treat and even recognize.

In this Short Course on July 30 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Drs. Winter and Chakraborty will underscore the complex pathophysiology of dysnatremia, why it is under-valued and even ignored by clinicians, and how laboratorians are essential partners in helping sort through the complicated testing algorithms and results interpretations required to properly diagnosis and manage this serious condition.

In the case of hyponatremia, Dr. Winter, who was honored by AACC in 2008 for his outstanding contributions to education, will walk participants through the lab tests, considered with patients' clinical conditions, which support diagnoses of syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion, cerebral salt-wasting syndrome, adrenal insufficiency, or hypothyroidism as the underlying causes of dysnatremia.

Drs. Winter and Chakraborty also will address the complicated clinical management of dynsatremia, and the fine line clinicians have to walk to return patients' electrolyte balance. As an example, under-correcting hyponatremia raises the risk of complications and mortality, while over-correcting it can lead to osmotic demyelation syndrome. Conversely, aggressive lowering of plasma sodium in hypernatremia also can cause osmotic demyelation syndrome.

In Iron Men and Iron Women: Recent Advances in Iron Overload States (191004), a Short Course offered July 27 from 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Dr. Winter will be joined by his University of Florida colleague, Dr. Neil Harris, to explore new evidence about hepcidin's role in regulating total body iron and review current best testing practices in the workups for iron deficiency and iron excess. Drs. Winter and Harris also will highlight laboratorians' crucial role in advising physicians about the most cost-effective ways to screen and diagnose these conditions.

In a third session on July 29 from 2:30 to 5:00 p.m., Advanced Problem Solving in Coagulation: A Case-Based Approach (73219), Drs. Winter and Harris will be joined by their University of Florida colleague, Dr. Lindsay Bazydlo, to take an in-depth case-based look at three major coagulation problems, acquired hemophilia, bleeding associated with a novel anticoagulant, and acute onset catastrophic thrombosis. Participants in this very interactive program will walk away armed with knowledge to partner with physicians in dealing with three decidedly complex coagulation challenges.

Dr. Winter's expert knowledge and approachable teaching style hold the ingredients for three exceptional learning experiences!

Human Resources Playbook

Attentive audience; notes at the ready
brown bag

The lab is not just specimens and instruments; it is full of people who make diagnostic testing and quality control happen. But the science and art of managing the lab work force is a challenge for both new and seasoned supervisors. The 2014 Annual Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo offers plenty of fresh content to help lab leaders polish their human resources skills.

Two such sessions developed in cooperation with AACC's Management Science and Patient Safety Division aim to cultivate leadership skills and give lab managers the tools they need to adapt and thrive in today's climate of cost-cutting, reimbursement pressures, and productivity demands.

One of the sessions, Survival Tips for Adjusting to the Rapid Changes in Laboratory Medicine (72414), will arm attendees with a fresh perspective on skills they may not have developed in basic management training or even day-to-day practice but which are vitally important in today's fast-paced and ever-challenging healthcare system. In this Short Course on July 28 from 12:30-2:00 p.m., Dr. James Hernandez of Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., a highly regarded expert on safety and quality issues and a member of CLN's Patient Safety Focus editorial board, will discuss what skills like strategic thinking, negotiation, and mature communications bring to lab management practices today.

Dr. Hernandez and his co-presenter, Branden Marty, director of executive operations at the College of American Pathologists, will put attendees' newly gained knowledge to the test through a series of interactive case studies.

A second session developed in cooperation with AACC's Management Science and Patient Safety Division, Enhance Your Leadership Skills to Improve Employee Satisfaction and Engagement (72221), will expose three aspects of inspiring, effective management: gaining and maintaining employees' trust, cultivating lab teams' engagement with their workplaces, and communicating effectively. In this Short Course on July 28 from 2:30-5:00 p.m., Dr. Mark Kellogg of Boston Children's Hospital will examine the U.S. military's model of nurturing leaders, while Dr. Yan Zhang of University of Rochester (N.Y.) Medical Center, will shed light on strategies for bringing out employees' self-motivation. Meanwhile, Management Science and Patient Safety Division chair, Dr. Joshua Bornhorst of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, will explore adult learning styles and conflict resolution.

Popular speaker and service expert, Cherie Petersen of ARUP Laboratories, will unlock the doors to creating a culture of service excellence in the laboratory (74216) in a Short Course on July 30 from 2:30-5:00 p.m. Service excellence is a buzzword throughout healthcare, but models for measuring it and training programs about it focus heavily on patient satisfaction. While this is the ultimate goal of the lab, laboratory employees in general have little opportunity to interface with patients. In this highly interactive session, Petersen will give attendees a road map for integrating patient-centric concepts into the unique work environment of the lab and for developing a culture of service excellence in the lab.

This trio of management sessions will bring lab leaders in perfect harmony with the human element in today's laboratory!

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