Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Recap of the APA's Annual Meeting in New York City

Heidi Bunes, ClinkShrink, Dr. Joanna Brandt, Dinah
This year's annual meeting of the American Psychiatric Association was held from May 5th-9th at the Javits Center in New York City.  Let me tell you about it!

First of all, we were so excited that our book, Committed: The Battle Over Involuntary Psychiatric Care was awarded this year's Carol Davis Ethics Award for outstanding contribution to the literature in the ethics of psychiatry.  We are pictured here with Heidi Bunes, the Executive Director of the Maryland Psychiatric Society, and with Dr. Joanna Brandt, the Chair of the MPS Ethics Committee.  We received many compliments on our book and we both felt it was such an privilege to receive this award.  

If you've never been to an APA annual meeting, first you need to know that it's overwhelming!  There are poster sessions and at any given time there are workshops, symposia, lectures, courses, and events that are held in the Javits Convention Center as well as in the meeting rooms and ballrooms at the Times Square Marriott and Sheraton.  If you don't go early to a popular session, you can be sent to an overflow room or simply squeezed out.  Some of the sessions I wanted to go to had no room in the overflow rooms!  Some years there are very famous speakers: Alan Alda, VP Joseph Biden, Oliver Saks, and Desmond Tutu come to mind from past years. 

This year, I decided to make a point of covering one of the sessions for my column in Clinical Psychiatry News and you can read here about a symposium on Issues and Controversies with Medical Marijuana chaired by Dr. Godfrey Pearlson.

On Tuesday, I chaired a workshop on the Role of Involuntary Treatment in Preventing Violence.   On Saturday evening, I attended a session with pianist/psychiatrist Richard Kogan who discussed the life and psychology of composer Leonard Bernstein illustrated with his music.  Other sessions I went to included "the gun talk,"  stimulant use in ADHD, stimulant misuse in ADHD, how the digital world is changing us. Aside from that, there was catching up with friends and checking out the restaurants in the Big Apple.  

Next year: San Francisco.