When 14,000 public health professionals and leaders in government and health attended the American Public Health Association's (APHA) 132nd Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. in November 2004, the chiropractic profession was right there with them.This year, the APHA meeting's theme was "Public Health and the Environment." An exciting array of topics was covered among the over 4,000 scientific papers presented in the 900-plus sessions. The APHA program was a comprehensive collection of educational sessions, roundtable workshops, poster sessions, and panel discussions, all designed to enhance knowledge about public health. Selected sessions were broadcast live via satellite, and made available in various formats. Besides the usual contemporary public health issues, considerable attention was given at the meeting to environmental issues. Hundreds of additional sessions dealt with a full range of other pressing public health issues, including emerging infections, preparedness, access to care, obesity, physical activity and exercise, health disparities, and wellness topics.
The keynote speaker at the opening general session on Nov. 7 was Erin Brockovich, well-known consumer advocate and director of environmental research for the law firm of Masry and Vititoe. She described her pursuits of justice for Americans who have been harmed by environmental negligence at the hands of industry. Other speakers at the opening general session included the APHA president and its executive director, the director of the Washington D.C.,Health Department and the president of the Washington, D.C., Public Health Association, Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ), state Sen. Ray Miller (D-OH), and John Conyers Jr. (D-MI) from the U.S. House of Representatives.
As usual, most of the major leaders in government and health were present, including the health commissioners of several states, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), the U.S. Public Health Service, the Department of Health and Human Services, and various private institutes and voluntary agencies. In addition, officials from the World Health Organization (WHO), the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), and the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) attended the meeting, as did a former U.S. Surgeon General, several current and former elected state politicians and members of Congress, several college and university presidents, deans, program directors and department heads, various international, federal, state and local health officials, and other educators, authors, researchers, and dignitaries.
The chiropractic profession was well represented at the APHA Annual Meeting. American Chiropractic Association (ACA) Chief Executive Officer Gary Cuneo and Journal of the American Chiropractic Association (JACA) staffer Nataliya Schetchikova, PhD, were in attendance. The International Chiropractors Association (ICA) was represented by CEO Ron Hendrickson and Director of Professional Development Coralee Van Egmond, DC. David O'Bryon represented the Association of Chiropractic Colleges (ACC). Many individual chiropractic colleges were represented, including Palmer College of Chiropractic, Western States Chiropractic College, Cleveland Chiropractic College, Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College, and New York Chiropractic College.
For the 20th year, chiropractic was included among the 900 scientific and technical paper presentations that covered over 30 specialty areas. This year, four program sessions were dedicated exclusively to chiropractic topics, including some 18 paper presentations prepared by 37 coauthors. In addition, there were five other chiropractic papers by 22 co-authors presented at jointly sponsored sessions with other disciplines.
Chiropractic session titles and moderators were:
- "Chiropractic in the Changing Health Care Environment"; moderator: Rand Baird, DC, MPH
- "Issues in Chiropractic and Public Health Education"; moderator: John Hyland, DC, DACBR, MPH
- "Issues in Chiropractic Practice and Research"; moderator: Christine Goertz, DC, PhD
- "Chiropractic: Access, Outreach and Research"; moderator: John Pammer, DC, DACBR
Every year, the APHA Exhibit Hall is one of the largest and most diverse of its kind in the world. Over 625 exhibit booths were displayed in the new Washington Convention Center exhibit hall at the 2004 Annual Meeting
The Chiropractic Health Care Section of APHA joined with the Vision Care, Oral Health, and Podiatry sections for the third time in a multi-sectional "mega-booth." The ACA, ICA, ACC, and individual chiropractic colleges donated materials for booth use. Public health multidisciplinary screenings were offered at the booth, along with several pieces of chiropractic literature, which enhanced the image of chiropractic considerably. Several hundred registrants visited the chiropractic exhibit booth to obtain literature and ask questions.
New Officers Announced
Chiropractic Health Care Section officers for 2005 were announced at the meeting. The new officers are:
Chair: John Hyland, DC, MPH
Chair-elect: Andrew Isaacs, DC
Past-chair: Lisa Killinger, DC
Secretary: Elaine Morschhauser, DC
Section Council: Ashley Cleveland, DC, MA; Mitchell Haas, DC, MA; Eric Hurwitz, DC, PhD; Sharon Jaeger, DC, DACBR; Karen Konarski-Hart, DC; John Pammer, DC, DACBR
Governing Council: Kurt Hegetschweiler, DC; Monica Smith, DC, PhD
Awards: Sharon Jaeger, DC, DACBR
Membership: Andrew Isaacs, DC
Nominations: Ashley Cleveland, DC, MA
Program: Maria Hondras, DC, MPH
Publicity: John Pammer, Jr., DC, DACBR
Resolutions: Monica Smith, DC, PhD
Section Manual: Mitchell Haas, DC, MA
Newsletter Editor: Michael Haneline, DC, MPH
Action Board Rep: Christine Goertz, DC, PhDDuring the meeting, I was honored by the CHC section by receiving the "Distinguished Service Award" in recognition of my work leading and coordinating chiropractic activities in APHA for the past 25 years.
2005 Annual Meeting
The APHA's 2005 Annual Meeting will be held in New Orleans, La. Nov. 5-9. The theme of the meeting will be "Evidence-Based Policy and Practice." This same theme has also been stressed at chiropractic research presentations for the past few years, and our profession is clearly positioned for a leadership role in this area.
All doctors of chiropractic, chiropractic students and faculty members are urged to join the Chiropractic Health Care Section of APHA now. Chiropractic can continue to succeed in enhancing chiropractic credibility and communication in mainstream public health activities through its membership and active participation in the APHA. Information and membership applications can be obtained at the APHA's Web site, www.apha.org.
Rand Baird, DC, MPH, MPH, FICA, FICC
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