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We arrived in San Diego to beautiful weather and sunshine, a welcome change from Upstate New York's overcast and wintry seasonal weather. Once we checked into our hotel and got our bearings, we set up the exhibit booth with anticipation of receiving visits from many of the over 5,000 attendees there. We were not disappointed!
We added over 200 nurses to our e-newsletter list. In this way, they will receive all the latest MH information directly from the MH experts and MHAUS staff with regard to the clinical end of MH as well as new tools to "Be Prepared for MH".
We heard from many who are taking a leading role in assuring their particular facilities are ready for this uncommon event and were developing MH Mock Drills as well as including MH simulations to address this need. When we shared the new MH Mock Drill Kit, already set up to coordinate the mock drill preparation and coordination, resulting in a lot of interest. Many already had the kit, which was a pleasant surprise, and found it to be a welcome tool to their annual or semi-annual MH preparation activities.
We were visited by a doctor who specifically found us in order to thank us for saving his wife from MH by having the MH Hotline available! The MH Hotline Consultant who helped her doctor was to be commended for the composed help offered and lifesaving insight on her behalf! This type of confirmation that we are doing the right thing is so very gratifying. He brought her over to us and we had a very nice discussion of her event, his concerns in the waiting room, and their plans for assuring their family is aware of the MH susceptibility within their family. They have agreed to work with us to share their story on the MHAUS website - be sure to watch for it, and if you have a story to share as well, we would love to hear from you!
Our joint efforts with AORN continued in a positive way at this meeting as AORN used their main point of contact at the meeting as an avenue for the MH Procedure Manuals for Hospitals and ASCs to be sold there at the meeting. Through conversations with those visiting the booth, we were told the manuals were seen and were being purchased as well. This opportunity to share these premium MH educational tools will continue at next year's meeting as well.
We were asked by numerous nurse educators, as well as other nurses visiting the exhibit, to produce a number of short, 20-minute videos on various aspects of MH, and make them available via our website, to be regularly used as training options for new hires, refresher options, and regular MH training reminders of the explosive nature of this particular disorder. We plan to move forward with this suggestion and offer online training, either on a scheduled basis (perhaps once or twice a month) to allow healthcare professionals to sign up for the short presentation and then gather around a computer screen or their home computer to keep up-to-date on their MH preparedness efforts and confidence. As always, we will share availability of the new program, when completed, via our website, in our member's newsletter, The Communicator, and in the e-newsletter. As always, those who are MHAUS members will probably be afforded either a discount or free option, versus those who are not MHAUS members. The training will be easily accessible to all, whether an MHAUS member or not.
Other conversations with attendees did reveal, however, there is still more to do in order to share the news that both versions of dantrolene sodium for injection (JHPs brand, Dantrium® Rapid Mix, and US WorldMeds, Revonto®) have been improved to mix in approximately 20 seconds or less. There is no need for warming of the product any longer to get it to mix, as once the liquid is added it mixes nearly immediately! This is a great improvement to the product line and, although there remains a very present need for "all hands on deck" during an MH event, the mixing of the drug no longer poses a major concern. For more information, either visit the manufacturer's websites or go to our website at www.mhaus.org and use the links to both provided there.
We welcome feedback on new product ideas and are more than willing to listen to your constructive feedback on options to improve the MH preparedness products we have available now. Call and let us know what you think!