Thoughts about the Regional Ostomy Conference
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The Midwest Regional Ostomy Conference was held Nov. 8, 2014 at the Doubletree Hotel in Arlington Heights.
The Conference was a VERY well attended one, with both participants and vendors from all over the country. We pride ourselves here in the Chicago area, as having one of the best ASG’s in the country with the Ostomy Association of Greater Chicago.
There were many veterans who were in attendance and those veterans spoke to a number of “newbies” to whom this Conference was a real eye-opener.
The sessions were excellent and informative and the traffic around the vendor tables was brisk as well.
Many people were questioning where the nearest support group was to their area. The National UOAA table was able to direct many of those folks.
We did encounter a few people who were very new to the ostomy world and when they came up to us, in many cases, they did not even know what to ask.
We worked with them, made them feel comfortable and told them that they were now “home”, among friends and people who totally understood their perspective and feelings. For truly, for a new person, the MOST important thing at any of these Conferences is to validate HOW they feel and to try to help them, encourage them to attend support group meetings and learn all they can about their “new” look.
Our wonderful manufacturers were well represented and they exhibited the newest and best products on the market.
Our Medical Advisor – Dr. Bruce Orkin was also in attendance and stopped often to answer many a question. Thank you Dr. Orkin.
The social aspects of the Conference were well planned as well and the food was wonderful.
All in all Judy Svoboda and her team did a FABULOUS job of organizing this Conference and it was apparent that the word got out and it was well promoted, as attendance was over 150, quite an accomplishment for a Regional event.
Kudos to you Judy and your team !!!
A job, VERY well done !
I would like to thank you and acknowledge how much my husband and I enjoyed the Midwest Regional Ostomy Education Conference in Arlington Heights on Saturday, November 8, 2014.
We found the conference to be very educational and interesting. We also enjoyed meeting many interesting and wonderful people, and learning many new things. It was also a great pleasure for me to meet you and Susan Burns. Both of you are lovely ladies and are very good representatives of your organization!
All of the presentations were excellent, and all of the speakers were very knowledgeable! Looking back now I wish I would have been able to visit with more vendors and other people, and I would have liked to see more of the other presentations too. However, the time went by so quickly, and to do everything was almost impossible for me during that one day.
I was also pleasantly surprised by seeing one of my ostomy nurses Eric again at the stoma clinic. Eric was the wound and ostomy nurse attending and supervising my home-care nurse after my second surgery in November 2012, from ulcerative colitis. Eric was also very helpful by finding the right pouching system for me, after I encountered all sorts of problems with other pouching systems. I am very grateful for all the help from Eric during that time. It made me understand and realize how very important and how very special wound and ostomy nurses really are.
I also enjoyed Laura Cox’s presentation very much, and I am glad that I had a chance to meet Laura in person. Just after having my ileostomy in 2012, I found one of Laura’s videos on my computer. I was so impressed by the courage and the positive attitude of that pretty young woman. Laura was truly an inspiration to me, and I greatly admire her for what she is doing by helping others with sharing her story. I would also like to mention Allyson Bain, and how much I enjoyed Allyson’s presentation also. I can identify with what Laura and Allyson had do endure during their illness. It was good to hear Laura’s and Allyson’s testimonies, and to be encouraged by these two brave young women. By hearing their stories one does not feel so alone in this!
Thank you again Judy, and I am very much looking forward to seeing you in St. Louis at the National Ostomy Conference in September 2015.
With fond regards,