Date: Thursday, August 17, 2023
Category: Member News
RESNA’s Board of Directors has decided to take a one-year break from holding an annual conference, and so will not be announcing 2024 conference dates. Instead, RESNA will be developing new events and exploring partnerships for future conferences.
“Sponsors, attendees, and solution providers really enjoyed our New Orleans conference this past July, and we got great feedback from our customer focus groups and surveys,” said Carmen DiGiovine, PhD, ATP/SMS, RET and President, Board of Directors. “But with manufacturers, public institutions, and rehab facilities cutting their budgets, we felt we could not get the attendance we needed to make a 2024 conference financially feasible.”
“Member needs have really changed due to the pandemic. For example, RESNA now has year-round continuing education available through RESNA Learn, which is free to members,” said Andrea Van Hook, Executive Director. “The hands-on and in-person component of assistive tech is very important, though, so we’re actively looking for ways to engage live, especially with partners. Since conferences are planned years in advance, we simply couldn’t make it happen for 2024.” RESNA Learn includes courses on product design, smart technologies and power wheelchairs, engineering concepts in AT, and robotics wheelchairs, among others.
In recent years, RESNA has developed several partnerships within the assistive technology field, like a RESNA educational track at the International Seating Symposium; joint advocacy efforts with NCART, NRRTS, and the Clinicians Task Force; standards harmonization on wheelchair securement systems with the Society of Automotive Engineers; and a “Pathway to the ATP” program with the DMERT Group for rehab repair technicians, in development with an intended 2024 launch. RESNA also has close relationships with U.S. Rehab, the National Mobility Equipment Dealers Association, and several universities.
On October 17 at 3pm ET, RESNA will present the annual Colin McLaurin Lecture at the O'Hara Student Union on the campus of the University of Pittsburgh. This year’s lecturer is Dr. Rory Cooper, founder, director, and CEO of the Human Engineering Research Laboratories (HERL), a joint venture of the University of Pittsburgh, the US Department of Veterans Affairs and the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
The event is open for in-person attendance and will also be streamed live, with the recording available later for on-demand viewing. As an accredited IACET provider, RESNA is offering 0.1 CEU for this event. Registration is required. For more information, please visit www.resna.org.