May 07, 2024

Reflecting on meaning in medicine at the ACGME Annual Education Conference

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The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) hosted its Annual Education Conference March 7-9. More than 4,000 people in health care education leadership, caregiving, and administrative positions attended the conference in Orlando, Florida. Among these Tekuila CarterTekuila Carter, M.D.attendees were Tekuila Carter, M.D., Anesthesiology Program Director, Kimberly Butler Pediatric Residency Program Manager, and Gabriel Daniels, M.D., PGY 4 fellow in Hospice and Palliative Medicine. There were a total of 14 attendees from UAB.

The ACGME Annual Education Conference serves as an opportunity for health care professionals who are passionate about graduate medical education to engage in educational sessions, networking opportunities, and personal reflection on their passion for medicine.

“We can learn so much from other medical educators at this meeting, including lessons learned and new ways to address different aspects of the training of clinical physicians,” remarked Dr. Carter. “We can also build lasting relationships to continue learning from each other throughout the year.”

Dr. Carter found the “Strategies to Mitigate Bias in Learner Evaluations: Tools to Create Equitable Learning” session most salient. The session delved into examining bias in assessments of physician learners, particularly considering its impact on the learning environment, satisfaction, well-being, integration, and career paths. It explored how these biases affect various aspects of physicians' development and professional trajectories.

Kimberly Butler Kimberly Butler Likewise, Dr. Daniels enjoyed the “Marvin R. Dunn Keynote Address: Improving the Culture of Residency” session. During this segment, the speakers introduced a novel trial platform designed for conducting extensive studies on educational matters within graduate medical education and training. For their first two trials, the speakers centered their attention on trainee well-being by examining common perceptions, sources, and disparities, as well as potential solutions and the impact of the clinical learning environment. Currently, in their third trial, they are focusing on disparity outcomes and methods to enhance diversity, equity, and inclusion within surgical departments. Their objective in this session was to outline the outcomes of these ongoing trials and equip participants with practical strategies to foster a more inclusive residency culture.

For Butler, networking was the most informative aspect of the conference.

“One of the biggest benefits is that the conference provides opportunities for participants to network and engage with other residency program leaders,” said Butler. “The sharing of ideas and experiences, as well as solutions to common issues, benefits both the individual learner and the institution.”

Conference attendees had the opportunity to network with more than 4,000 professionals at events like theGabriel DanielsGabriel Daniels, M.D. Marvin R. Dunn Welcoming Poster Reception and Exhibitor Kick-Off, the Coordinator Networking Reception, Toast on the Terrace with ACGME Leadership, daily well-being activities, Pickleball pick-up court times, a mentor/mentee program, sponsored receptions, and a Saturday evening sundae family event.

The 2024 conference theme was “Meaning in Medicine” to emphasize the importance of continuously finding joy and fulfillment in health care. Whether participants are in a leadership, caregiving, or educator position, the conference works to help them remember what called them to medicine while giving them the tools to continuously provide the best care possible.

“I think this is a must-attend conference for anyone interested in advancement or innovation in medical education,” said Dr. Daniels. “This was my second year attending in person and, especially as a trainee, I think it is important to be present and share your voice as these eye-opening conversations depend on involvement from both those administering the education and those learning from it.”

Learn more about the 2024 ACGME Annual Education Conference. The 2025 ACGME Annual Education Conference will be held in Nashville, Tennessee on Feb. 20-22, 2025.