From the President

 

Annual Conference: Create, Change and Act! 

By Nan Streeter, President, AMCHP  

Do you hear the trumpets sounding the exciting notes of a remarkable time for health policy in our nation? Our theme for this year’s Annual Conference, “Launching MCH Opportunities in a New Era” proves to bring stimulating ideas and information to the new sheet of music we will create for maternal and child health. Whether your focus is on data, maternal and women’s health, building systems of services, promoting medical homes, workforce development, or a variety of children’s health issues, the overall theme is one of remarkable opportunities as we compose the new and future maternal and child health agenda.

To be sure, we are all faced with the fiscal realities of too few resources and staff to build the structures for services that promote health and prevent long-term problems. But, we will not advance a strong agenda if we get stuck in the quicksand we too often frame as our impossible and difficult tasks. The Annual Conference allows us the chance to have important dialogues about our future initiatives. It permits us to educate others about the body of evidence that prevention must take center stage in our overall efforts to strengthen our future society. Come hear about the progress we have made in newborn screening and preconception and maternal health. Learn about the future of medical homes and developing exciting care management programs. Participate in skills building sessions. Walk through our exciting poster sessions and hear the arias from successful stars in our states. Meet new people, talk with our sponsors and partners, listen to our families, and if possible, spend time educating your congressmen about the importance of our work.

While we hear the magnificent programs and activities that are being implemented, listen also for the work we need to do. What agenda will we create to enhance prevention, grow our workforce, and finally unite health and health care as our nation begins to transform its overall health system into the effective system for our future generations? As you attend the Conference, ask yourself what you need to do, what strengths you have to offer, and we collectively can do to frame our future. I recently watched a show about ordinary people who became heroes in their own right. They are living their dreams to change what seems impossible. Are you inspired to create, to change, to act? Join us at our Annual Conference and begin to compose our future.