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Monday, November 14, 2016 - 2:15pm

Fifth Annual Johns Hopkins Critical Care Rehabilitation Conference Experience

By: Jessica Flanagan '16, Master of Science in Occupational Therapy

My name is Jessica Flanagan. I am a United States Marine Corps Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) veteran (Sergeant, 2007-2011) and a motivated second year Occupational Therapy graduate student. I am looking forward to completing my second, and last, fieldwork II placement in December and graduating and becoming a licensed and employed clinician!

The Fifth Annual Johns Hopkins Critical Care Rehabilitation Conference was a truly inspiring, motivating and overall absolutely wonderful experience. I am truly grateful to have been able to experience this conference as a student.  The subject matter was intense and the days were long, but the air was filled with a palpable passion for being champions of increased quality of care. Common themes of the conference were early mobility, identifying and treating delirium and subsequent mental health issues, evidence-based best practice in the intensive care unit, quality improvement measures and accountability within facilities, being a collaborating, conducive and contributing member of a multidisciplinary team, and being an agent of change when necessary in order to combat a stagnant culture of health care. The conference was conducive to the practical application of each of these components by sharing all pertinent information via twitter and email, and acted as a great medium for uniting health care clinicians based on common interests. 

As a student I was able to utilize the conference as a gauge for my personal peaked interest pertaining to hospital based care. It was a great experience to speak with seasoned clinicians and listen to their opinions on hospital-based healthcare as opposed to various other clinical environments they may have worked in previously. Additionally, I had the opportunity to speak with PT, OT and SLP students from other states, allowing me to appreciate the common motivation of becoming a licensed clinician in our respected field. I am very grateful to have been chosen to apply for this and beyond pleased that I was able to attend.