ACU 2024 Conference Logo Concept I (4)ACU 2024 Conference: Envisioning a More Equitable Future: Advancing Stakeholder-Centered Innovation

August 4-7, 2024 | The Westin Washington, DC Downtown | Washington, D.C.

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From August 4-7 at the Westin Washington, DC Downtown in the heart of Washington, D.C., ACU’s 2024 Conference “Envisioning a More Equitable Future: Advancing Stakeholder-Centered Innovation,” will unite hundreds of healthcare clinicians, administrators, advocates, and public health leaders from across the U.S., all with an interest in expanding access to care and improving healthcare delivery for medically underserved populations. We’re excited to showcase some of the 20+ CME-accredited sessions available at this year’s event.

Suicide Safer Care: Emerging Issues and Practical Strategies to Confront the Crisis of Suicide in Primary Care

Suicide is an existential public health crisis in the United States, and suicide rates reached their highest recorded levels in 2022 according to provisional CDC data. Several emerging areas of concern have grown in recent years as well, including the rising issues of youth, geriatric, and maternal suicide. Particularly in medically underserved communities, many individuals may lack access to any dedicated behavioral health services, but as research shows that nearly half of people who later end their lives by suicide visit a primary care provider in the month before their passing, primary care organizations have vital chances to identify and care for patients at risk.

This session will help clinicians, leaders, and other staff working in primary care settings to better understand unique considerations in Suicide Safer Care for patients at risk, with an added focus on unique considerations in pediatric and maternal suicide prevention. It will also detail effective suicide screening and prevention practices for both populations, from risk assessments to clinical pathways and evidence-based interventions.

Health Centers 101: the Program & the Movement

Join us for an insightful exploration of the fundamental aspects of the Health Center Movement. This session will delve into the core principles, objectives, and impact of health centers, both as a program and as a dynamic movement. Participants will gain a comprehensive understanding of the historical context, essential components of health centers, Primary Care Associations (PCAs), and the pivotal role they play in community healthcare. From examining key program elements to tracing the Movement’s evolution, this session aims to equip attendees with foundational knowledge essential for navigating the landscape of community health. Whether you are a seasoned professional or new to the field, “Health Centers 101” promises to be an engaging and informative journey through the heart of the Health Center Movement.

Optimizing Workforce Well-Being: Strategies for Equitable Compensation and Financial Wellness for Health Center Staff

Explore the crucial connection between staff wellness and compensation in ‘Optimizing Workforce Well-Being: Strategies for Equitable Compensation and Financial Wellness for Health Center Staff.’ Delve into the pivotal role of financial well-being in a health center’s workforce strategy and gain practical insights for aligning compensation with equity and inclusion principles. The session addresses promoting staff wellness through transparent compensation, including benefits and ‘thriving’ wages. Participants will leave with STAR² Center resources, providing actionable tools for implementing effective compensation and benefits strategies to foster a healthier, more resilient workforce.

NHSC: Educating and Empowering Advocates to Speak about the National Health Service Corps

The NHSC was designed to bring primary care clinicians to the country’s most underserved communities. Unfortunately, the future of the National Health Service Corps (NHSC), Health Centers and other vital programs for the underserved is at risk. We need your voice to build our power to protect and expand these vital programs. In this session, discover how to become an ACU advocate. Attendees will also learn about the NHSC’s field strength, equity and diversity within the NHSC, the program’s funding history, current issues, and recommendations for Congress to address health workforce shortages.

Training for Resilience: How to Adapt Strategies from Training High-Stress Activities to Build Better Staff Support Systems

Well-crafted and effective training for personnel who operate in high-stress environments (such as first responders, disaster responders, etc) has evolved to focus on a particular learning process sequence, and at its heart revolves around creating competence in specific skills; providing the opportunity for safe-yet-realistic (usually simulation-based) deployment of those skills; and building confidence in one’s knowledge, skills, abilities, and teammates. Well-executed training models employ a process that takes advantage of the neuroscience of the human stress response and recovery to engrain useful skills and practices, while developing coping mechanisms to manage stress and bolster resilience under pressure. Every workplace brings unavoidable stressors, and few carry such routine acute and chronic stress as the healthcare workplace. This education session will be an interactive presentation and discussion about how principles involved in training personnel to operate in high stress environments can be adapted to develop better workplaces and processes that support staff at all levels in healthcare.

Best Practices for Connecting and Collaborating with Caregivers

Clinicians typically see healthcare consumers for a few minutes in a clinical space, but factors affecting health extend far beyond face-to-face time with a provider and clinic staff. When consumers are receiving support from a caregiver—whether a professional, family member, or friend—clinical staff have a significant opportunity to understand and impact health factors not readily visible in the clinic. However, clinicians also face the challenge of working with another party to manage an individual’s care plan. It is critical that providers and clinical staff fully understand the opportunities and challenges working with a caregiver or home health worker presents, and how to offer appropriate care, fully support consumer-led decision-making, and engage with and support the consumer’s caregiver or home health worker(s). This session will provide an overview of how caregivers can play a vital role as consumer advocates and lenses into the consumer’s world at home, as well as provide strategies for incorporating home healthcare givers into consumer care plans.

Register by June 14 and save! ACU Members and students receive significant discounts.

Registration for ACU’s 2024 Conference is now open! Please contact Program Director Luke Ertle if you have any questions or issues with registering.