Welcome to the HM20 virtual conference! We’re glad to have you join us to virtually experience sessions from our most popular SHM annual conference tracks including Rapid Fire, Clinical Updates, and High-Value Care! We also have added some new timely topics given our current times that you won’t want to miss. We encourage you to engage with the larger community via social media at #HM20Virtual.
HM20 in San Diego, scheduled originally for April 2020, was trending to be the highest in-person attended SHM annual conference with a fantastic line-up of offerings. Unfortunately, then came our pandemic, or pandemics. In mid-March, the Society of Hospital Medicine board of directors concluded that it was impossible for SHM to move forward with Hospital Medicine 2020 in San Diego because of the continued spread of COVID-19. Canceling the in-person conference during this unprecedented time was the right thing to do. I have valued the SHM leadership team and the larger SHM community for their support in being even more engaged on the front lines and with each other across our world during this time.
The COVID-19 pandemic has created a systemic challenge for health care systems across the nation. As hospitalists continue to be on the front lines of care and also innovations, organizations have leveraged telemedicine to support their patients, protect their clinicians, and conserve scarce resources. It is hospital medicine that has been on the front lines of change and adaptations and have led in this pandemic in many organizations across the nation and the world.
Unfortunately, known health disparities have also been amplified and there came an acute worsening of the chronic issues in this nation. On March 13, 2020, 26-year-old Breonna Taylor was shot after police forcibly entered her home. Armaud Arbery was shot and killed by armed neighbors while running through a neighborhood in Brunswick, Ga. Then on May 25, 5 miles from where I call home here in the Twin Cities in Minnesota, George Floyd, a 46-year-old father arrested for suspected use of a counterfeit $20 bill, died after police kneeled on his neck for over 8 minutes. This pandemic has also shaken up the status quo and laid bare a lot of our country’s long and deep-seated issues – from massive economic inequities to ongoing racial disparities to immigration concerns. It’s woken a lot of our valued hospitalists to the fact that the old ways of doing things just don’t work.
I’m grateful our society has taken steps to speak into these timely topics, and to share via publications, Twitter chats, advocacy items, and more! I want to encourage all of us to use the immense network of our hospitalist communities to comfort each other, learn, grow, and engage. We have not achieved big changes by ourselves. We’ve created valued offerings and innovative changes, and we’ve led on the front lines, in policies and procedures, by doing it together. Meaningful change requires allies in a common cause. We stand with our black and brown brothers and sisters who are particularly attuned to injustice, inequality, and struggle. We in hospital medicine stand up with many others who are struggling, our African American, Latin American, Native American, immigrant, LGBTQ+ communities. This intersection of the crisis of the COVID-19 pandemic and the racism pandemic have led us to a pivotal point in the arc of change and justice. I invite you to comfort each other, learn from each other, and act together in this community. To this end we have included timely resources in our HM20 virtual offering on these topics.
This year has been a big transition year. Not only did 2020 usher in a new decade, along with COVID-19 and our double pandemic, SHM has also had important transitions within its senior leadership. We say farewell to Larry Wellikson, MD, who has been at the helm of SHM since the beginning. On behalf of this annual conference, we want to celebrate and thank you, Larry, for your years of dedication and service to SHM. You have taken the specialty of hospital medicine and created a movement in SHM, where the entire hospital medicine team may gather under a bigger tent for education, community, and for the betterment of care for our patients.
We extend a welcome to Eric Howell, MD, who succeeds Dr. Wellikson as SHM’s CEO. We also welcome Danielle Scheurer, MD, as the new SHM president, succeeding the great leadership offered this past year by Christopher Frost, MD. In addition, Jerome C. Siy, MD, was voted president-elect, Dr. Rachel Thompson, MD, was elected treasurer, Kris Rehm, MD, was voted secretary, and Darlene Tad-y, MD, was elected to the board of directors. We welcome these new officers.
HM20 Virtual will consist of prerecorded on-demand sessions that can be viewed at your convenience as well as live Q&A and attendee networking that will take place during specific dates/times. A few of the top-rated sessions from our historically popular tracks include: Update in Clinical Practice Guidelines, Antibiotics Made Ridiculously Simple, Getting to Know Oncology Emergencies, Inpatient Pain Management in the Era of the Opioid Epidemic, Updates in Heart Failure, and Hyponatremia: Don’t Drink the Water. Additionally, we have some of our perennial favorites including the Update in Hospital Medicine and Top Pediatric Articles of 2019. There will be COVID-19 specific content from expertise throughout the nation focusing on care pathways, clinical updates, telemedicine, point-of-care ultrasound, and more! To view the HM20 Virtual Opening Session and discover what you can expect in this educational experience,.
The Journal of Hospital Medicine has had a large presence in our meetings for many years. We are grateful for Samir Shah, MD, and his leadership during this double pandemic, for identifying areas where we can advance the field responsibly in the face of relatively limited evidence, and rapidly evolving news. As part of his commitment, all JHM articles related to COVID-19 and published during the pandemic are open access. A pre-COVID goal that has been realized during the pandemic was to bring more of the journal into our annual conference and the conference contents into the journal. We are proud to say this has been a great collaboration, particularly during this pandemic, and much thanks to Dr. Shah’s leadership for highlighting timely pieces. Kimberly Manning, MD, had an especially powerful piece on the topic of racism and our double pandemic, and she is a featured speaker during our HM20 Virtual offering, under the same title as her article: “When Grief and Crises Intersect: Perspectives of a Black Physician in the Time of Two Pandemics.” Additionally, Manpreet Malik, MD, and I will be copresenting on a timely topic about the “Immigrant Hospitalist during COVID-19.”
Aside from these sessions for HM20 Virtual, the real can’t miss(es) for the conference are the Research, Innovations, and Clinical Vignette (RIV) posters sessions. I am grateful for the leadership of Stephanie Mueller, MD, who served as chair for this year’s RIV. This unique year has led to the hosting of a virtual poster competition with judging and the opening of a virtual gallery. We are so pleased to be able to share and highlight the work of many of learners and staff hospitalists! I love that a hospitalist on one side of the country can help provide pearls on a case, an innovation, or a research idea that can help improve diagnosis for a patient at the other side of the country. Keep an eye on SHM’s social media and the presentation by Dr. Mueller for announcements of the winners.
A favorite reason many of us attend the annual conference is for the people and community. We wanted to keep this value as we shifted to a virtual offering. Networking will occur through a variety of offerings including Simulive sessions and Special Interest Forums. Simulive sessions will run for 3 weeks from August 11 to August 27. For those of you new to the term, Simulive may sound like a made-up word, but it is an actual amalgamation of a prerecorded webinar and a live interaction (simulated + live = Simulive). Simulive allows the faculty to sit in on their prerecorded session and interact with the audience via the chat feature during the live scheduled recording and spend time afterwards for a live Q&A from the audience.
There will also be over 20 Special Interest Forums hosted in the evenings after these Simulive sessions have concluded to give you a chance to connect with individuals, share experiences, and have meaningful discussions that can directly impact your practice. Samples of the forums include: Diversity and Inclusion, Rural Hospital Medicine, Pediatrics, NP/PA, Perioperative and Comanagement, Health Information Technology, and Point of Care Ultrasound! Take a look at the HM20 registration page for further information. You will receive direct information on how to attend. We encourage you to join!
HM20 also features a virtual 5K! Whether you run on a treadmill or jog in your neighborhood or local park, you can participate in HM20’s Virtual Fun Run or Walk. To participate, simply run your 5K during the weeks of HM20 Virtual and when you’re done, fill out our form to log your time. We encourage you to post a picture on social media as well with #HM20Virtual. You’ll also receive a certificate of completion at the close of HM20 Virtual.
All HM20 Virtual sessions will be available as on-demand after August 31. HM20 virtual offers more than 60 CME hours and over 35 MOC hours that you can claim at your convenience! That’s the most amount of CME and MOC ever offered at SHM for an event! This conference would not be possible without the tireless and relentless effort of SHM staff and leadership, our terrific speakers and faculty, and all the volunteer committee members of SHM. A huge thanks to the Annual Conference Committee who had the charge to develop the content for the Annual Conference, including topics, speakers, and learning objectives. I am grateful to have had the opportunity to serve on this committee for the past 7 years and to lead HM20 this year. Thanks to Brittany Evans, Hayleigh Lawrence, and Michelle Kann for their valued support this past year from an SHM staff perspective; to my assistant course director, Dan Steinberg, MD; and to the immediate past course director, Dustin Smith, MD, for their support.
Once again, we are excited to have you join, and we hope this conference elevates your education in hospital medicine, advances your career, stimulates innovative thinking, and provides you with enduring networking opportunities. We sincerely thank you for attending HM20 Virtual. Welcome!
Dr. Mathews is chief of hospital medicine at Regions Hospital, HealthPartners in St. Paul, Minn., an associate professor at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, and course director of HM20.