First, let me begin by thanking you for all you are doing to provide optimal care to our communities during this global health crisis. We know every day brings new information and challenges. Your dedication has not gone unnoticed.
At this time, we would like to share with you the status of the 2020 Annual Convention. With the safety and welfare of our members, staff, sponsors, and vendors our first concern in conjunction with new restrictions on travel and group gatherings, the AWHONN Board of Directors has made the difficult decision to postpone the Annual Convention in June.
Currently, the Board and AWHONN staff are looking at alternative solutions to meeting options, including but not limited to rescheduling Convention later this year. We ask for your patience as there is a tremendous amount of work that has gone into the conference planning and staff are now evaluating new plans and schedules. As communication during this time is paramount, we plan to provide another update for our membership and other stakeholders by the first week of May or sooner if feasible.
For those who have already registered, your accounts will be refunded within 45 days or you can opt to have your registration transferred to the new dates when available. Hotel reservations made through the Convention online registration service will have any deposits refunded. New hotel reservations can be booked when the Convention is rescheduled.
Contact the registration company at 240-439-2554 or 800-310-7554 for information or assistance.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, I thank you for your understanding and for your continued support of AWHONN.
Stay safe and be well.
Rebecca Cypher, MSN, PNNP
AWHONN Board of Directors
Dear AWHONN Members,
In a matter of days, COVID-19 has impacted our country and the healthcare profession in ways we could have never imagined. Every day, I am inspired by the examples of what our AWHONN members and their colleagues are doing as we move through this uncharted territory. I want you to know that AWHONN’s commitment to our members, patients and other stakeholders remains the same, especially in difficult times like these. We are here to support each and every one of you during this critical time.
On behalf of the Board of Directors, I want to personally express our gratitude to all our members. Regardless of your specialty, job title or location, we are on the same team and we will navigate through this crucial period to the absolute best of our collective abilities. Our front-line caregivers are bearing the brunt of this work while dealing with increased patient acuities and a lack of adequate personal protective equipment. Administrative leaders are confronted with maintaining adequate staffing, acquiring much needed equipment, and following daily changes in regulatory guidance. Our academic faculty are being challenged with how to teach the next generation of nurses. Educators are working hard to keep staff up to date. Retired members are offering their expertise by volunteering at the local and state level.
The pandemic has created a myriad of questions and concerns including how to care for the patients we serve while taking care of ourselves and protecting our families and friends. This increases the need for timely and accurate information for our members. AWHONN is listening and will be keeping our members up to date via our website and social media platforms.
The health and well-being of our AWHONN staff remains one of our top priorities. While our physical headquarters office remains closed to protect our staff and visitors, staff continues to work remotely for their safety. I personally want to thank all of them for continuing to tirelessly manage all of their responsibilities during this difficult time.
Again, thank you for your continued partnership with AWHONN and our shared mission of caring for women and newborns. Our hearts and thoughts are with you.
Rebecca Cypher, MSN, PNNP
2020 AWHONN President
Dear AWHONN Members:
As you know, the last week has seen a dramatic shift in the national response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) response. The situation is extremely fluid and changes day to day. Given that, we would like to give you another update regarding AWHONN activities.
We continue to track the latest news from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, as well as state and local health organizations regarding this pandemic. We encourage you to stay up to date by visiting the CDC website.
In addition, you can see updates specific to AWHONN, including all national and section meetings in real time at awhonn.org/novel-coronavirus-covid-19/. We will also continue to post updates on Member Central.
Yesterday, we made the painful decision to convert AWHONN on Capitol Hill into a virtual event. We know this is a special event that many members look forward to, but once again we are persevering in difficult circumstances. Please visit the link above for details about canceling your reservations. If you need further assistance you can reach out to AWHONN’s customer service.
In addition, many of our section leaders had to make the difficult decision to cancel their very important educational meetings. We are working with them to find ways to share their education virtually or through other methods so their great work will not be wasted.
Our national convention is to take place in June. At this point we are planning to see all of you in Phoenix. Should there be any changes, we will let notify everyone in as timely a manner as possible. Our hope is that circumstances will allow our meeting to go on as scheduled.
The well-being of AWHONN is always our main priority. Our staff members are now working remotely and will continue to do so next week and possibly longer. We appreciate your patience as our office staff transitions to this work plan and assure you that staff will continue to provide high quality service.
As health leaders, our communities are looking to us for guidance and comfort and your actions and leadership are paramount at this time. I implore each of you to keep your health, as well as the health of your loved ones and friends, at the forefront of your decision making over the coming days and weeks.
We will continue to monitor this situation carefully. We will immediately inform you of any changes to the AWHONN schedule. In the meantime, please stay informed by visiting the CDC’s website, your state’s health department messaging and by watching your respective media outlets. Once again, I ask that you use your best judgment when making decisions regarding your health.
Thank you for all that you do for your patients. And please be safe.
Rebecca Cypher, MSN, PNNP, President
AWHONN recognizes the need for flexibility in teaching our fetal monitoring programs during this critical time. We also recognize the importance of keeping our front-line nurses healthy, so they are able to care for their patients.
The Fetal Heart Monitoring Task Force is working on solutions-based guidance to share with our fetal monitoring instructors on how, and which parts of each course may be conducted in a virtual manner. More detailed guidance is coming soon. Thank you for your patience.
“The coronavirus (COVID-19) is creating a fair amount of uncertainty regarding the everyday health and travel practices for members, families, and the patients we care for daily. We want our members to remain vigilant, well-informed, and healthy. Therefore we recommend members closely monitor updates and advisories from the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization and state health departments. Our colleagues at the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists have written a practice advisory related to caring for our obstetric patients and we encourage our members to access this free resource. At this time, in-person meetings, such as our annual convention and AWHONN on Capitol Hill, are not being canceled. As the situation continues to evolve, AWHONN will continue to keep members updated via our website, Member Central, and Facebook. We encourage you to check back often for updates as we work through this very difficult situation.”
Rebecca Cypher, MSN, PNNP, President