Conference Planning

This conference, Crossing Barriers in Emergency Care of the Alcohol-Impaired Patient, continues the work started at the national conference held in June, 2000, which focused on developing and publishing the above recommended best practices. The focus of the Crossing Barriers conference was on the development of an action plan to overcome the barriers to implementation of the recommended best practices. Specifically, the conference goal was to answer the question: “What steps need to occur for emergency medical personnel to integrate alcohol screening and brief interventions into the care provided for alcohol-impaired patients?”

A task force representing emergency medicine, emergency nursing, and pre-hospital emergency services providers planned the conference. The planning task force developed the conference agenda and identified speakers, panel moderators, and presenters for the one-day meeting. (See the Conference Agenda in the Appendix.)

During the planning sessions, it was decided that the most effective format would review the barriers faced by health care professionals who will implement the best practice recommendations. Since many of the barriers are well known, it was decided that an overview would serve to bridge the gap between the statement of best practices and implementation. A panel discussion format was selected and presenters for each of the major categories were chosen to provide an overview that could set the stage for identifying action steps for specific barriers. One panel addressed research, insurance and reimbursement policies, and behavioral and privacy policy. A second panel discussed health practitioner behavior, culture and care, and EMS care of alcohol-impaired patients. Each panel discussion concluded with an open discussion period among the conference participants.

Two speakers were also selected to focus the participants on the cogent issues related to the implementation of screening and intervention for alcohol-impaired patients in the emergency care setting.

The planning task force identified national organizations to be invited to the meeting with an emphasis on including the organizations and individuals who participated in the June, 2000 meeting. These organizations included:

  • Air and Surface Transport Nurses Association (ASTNA)
  • American Ambulance Association (AAA)
  • American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP)
  • American College of Surgeons (ACS)
  • Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ)
  • American Psychiatric Association (APA)
  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
  • Emergency Nurses Association (ENA)
  • International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC)
  • International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF)
  • Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations (JCAHO)
  • National Association of EMS Physicians (NAEMSP)
  • National Association of Emergency Medical Technicians (NAEMT)
  • National Association of State EMS Directors(NASEMSD)
  • National Council of State EMS Training Coordinators (NCSEMSTC)
  • National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA)
  • National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism (NIAAA)
  • Society of Trauma Nurses (STN)

    (A list of meeting attendees is included in the Appendix.)