Texas Children’s Division of Otolaryngology recently hosted the 45th Annual Meeting of SENTAC (Society of Ear, Nose and Throat Advances in Children), one of the nation’s oldest and most respected ENT societies. It was the largest SENTAC conference ever, with nearly 300 national and international otolaryngology experts in attendance, including the largest ever turnout of allied health professionals.
“Multidisciplinary collaboration is one of the hallmarks of SENTAC,” said Dr. Deepak Mehta, Director of Texas Children’s Pediatric Aerodigestive Center and 2018 SENTAC president. “This event is not only for physicians, but also for audiologists, speech and language pathologists and therapists, advance practice providers, pediatricians, nurses and students. This experience is unique in that it brings us all together for a common purpose.”
The four-day event covered the entire spectrum of pediatric ENT topics, including sleep disorders, swallowing disorders, tracheostomy care and hearing loss. During the conference, over 60 presentations were given, including eight by experts from Texas Children’s – two of which won awards. Jessie Marcet-Gonzalez, CPNP, won first place for best podium presentation for her paper, “Effect of Inpatient Multidisciplinary Tracheostomy Team Rounds on Timely Outpatient Follow.” Texas Children’s audiologist Dr. Barbara Novak won second place for her paper, “Improving Loss to Follow-up: A Collaborative Citywide Initiation,” a project on newborn hearing screening in collaboration with Texas Children’s audiology clinical and cochlear implant specialist Dr. Samantha Lemelle, AuD.
Other event highlights included a banquet with live music and holiday lights at the Houston Zoo, and the first annual SENTAC Pediatric Otolaryngology Academic Bowl, presented by the Young Providers Committee. Texas Children’s took home the trophy, defeating teams from Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego and Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. Throughout the weekend, many said this was one of the best SENTAC conferences yet, both in terms of content and host venue.
“I feel pride in being part of Texas Children’s and all of us working together to put together such a fantastic meeting,” Mehta said. “The amazing support from Texas Children’s leadership and all the staff involved truly made it a success.”