Curiosity, Dialogue, and Knowledge
Filling out the confidentiality and non-compete agreement at the beginning of the course dulled some of my enthusiasm. Initially, I felt a surge of irritation. If this treatment is so important, then why not share it? This thought was quickly leavened with the realization that all healthcare companies and device manufacturers operate under this legal umbrella of secrecy. Devices are patented because they make money. No one gets angry at GE because they don’t make new imaging technology free and available to all hospitals. We shouldn’t, then, get too upset when a new, research-based, program is also guarded. I would hope, however, that as this course spreads in popularity (I believe it will) that it will become available for purchase in different formats other than small lecture based presentations. A web-based video course with reviews could easily be set up, and people could pay a reasonable fee to access it. It also wouldn’t hurt my feelings if more information was just shared freely, but I’ll try to temper my idealism. Given my constraints, I’ll make sure and talk about the McNeil Dysphagia Therapy Program (MDTP) in general terms, and I’ll try to comment specifically on the quality of the conference itself.
While I would have much preferred the next location this seminar was being conducted at (Europe) to Jackson, Mississippi, I was pleased with the conference room and all of the other administrative details of the conference. Also, ProCourse CEUs has a good point of contact with Cindy Barnett. She has always been easy to get in contact with, and was very helpful with the last CEU course I took on FEES through ProCourse CEUs. I know that I can expect to have the paperwork end taken care of without issue, and if there is a problem I know that Cindy can help me with figuring it all out.
As to the content of MDTP, I must be rather circumspect in what I say; so, I’ll lay out some bullet points to describe the therapy without going into too much detail:
The big question after any conference I’ve gone to is, “Was this worth the money and time?” In short, yes. I believe the information is solid and based on well thought out research. They manage to make connections to things that will challenge and delight you. The proof, as always, is in the pudding. I won’t really know for sure how well this works until I’ve used the therapy on a few of my own patients, but given the rigorous data supporting MDTP and the ease of access to its creators, (Dr. Giselle Carnaby and Dr. Michael Crary gladly gave me their email addresses for follow-up questions) I feel confident that I’ve stumbled across a new, exciting way of looking at how I approach the treatment of many of my patients with dysphagia.