Dwayne Aalseth

Dwayne Aalseth

Hello and hope all is well in your area. Conference was a great success with increased attendance and a lot of fun. Thank you to those of you who filled out your evaluations, I have gone through them and noted a few things that we can improve on next year. For the majority, evaluations were good and it seemed most had a great time. There are a few things I would like to address with the membership as a whole. Debbie Shea of Mena, AR is the winner of the evaluation drawing. She will receive a free registration for Conference 2013.

The biggest problem we had was the sign in sheets. This was a requirement from the Arkansas Department of Health Section of Trauma due to our grant. We have talked to both the Section of EMS and Trauma, we feel all obligations have been met and it will not be held against you if you did not sign the sheet. We are looking into a machine that will scan your name badge when you enter a class room; if this is able to be done I think it will alleviate the distraction and inconvenience.

Second the AEMTA is a non-profit organization that has no political opinion. I do apologize to anyone who was offended by our keynote speaker; it was not intended to be a political speech aimed at one entity or another. The intent was to make all of our members aware that their vote counts and that we all need to be aware of the issues effecting EMS. The nominated -incoming chairs are looking for a great motivational non-political speaker for next year.

I have had a lot of questions about where conference is held every year, and hotel price rates. We are currently looking at other locations. To lower rates we will have to move conference to an “off season time of year and during the week.” Judging by the evaluations, 79% want to keep conference in August and 91% want to keep it Thursday through Sunday. Going with the majority, Hot Springs is the best option. Little Rock will be an increase of 35% to both the AEMTA and attendees. I can tell you that we are constantly evaluating how we can save you money and strive to give you a better association and the best conference ever.

Next year we will have a theme… This was met with both good and bad comments. It seemed we were at about 50/50 about having a conference theme. If you had to have a conference theme this year it would have been change, and no theme was one of the changes. We are working hard on trying to make your association about you; if you have any suggestions feel free to let us know.

I would like to thank Denise Carson and Tonia Hale for their great leadership and hard work on this year’s conference.  We had over 600 attendees at this year’s conference. I have personally reviewed the evaluations; the numbers tell me that they had a 98% plus approval rate. My hat is off to Denise and Tonia! The following is the overall evaluation questions and scores, 1- being unsatisfactory / 5-being excellent.

How satisfied were you with the registration process 4.60
How satisfied were you with conference materials provided 4.45
Over all how satisfied were you with the speakers/presenters 4.38
Over all how satisfied were you with conference facilities 4.66
Conference staff was helpful and courteous 4.63
How satisfied were you with the banquet 4.38
How satisfied were you with the hotels 4.32
Would you recommend this conference to others 4.66
Do you plan to attend this conference again next year 4.71

Most of you have heard that the Austin hotel and the convention center sustained significant damage Sunday afternoon from severe weather. Thank god that no AEMTA member was injured and that all of our activities were completed prior to this event. We are in contact with all entities involved to make sure Conference 2013, August 1st to the 4th will go off as planned. Again thank you for your support and feel free to contact me with any suggestions or ideas. Until next time be safe and take pride in everything you do!