December in the Tropics: Summary of AAAP's 23rd Annual Meeting and Symposium

The 23rd Annual meeting of the AAAP held December 6-9, 2012 at the Turnberry Isle Hotel Miami in Aventura, Florida was a great success with over 435 participants  attending the Annual meeting, 122 attending the “Addictions and Their Treatment” course (formerly Review Course to prepare for Boards), and 39 attending the Buprenorphine training.  There were several new features this year including an expanded “Addictions and Their Treatment” course with a total of 20 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ that ran concurrently with the annual meeting agenda. This course was so popular that we reached full capacity sooner than expected and, most unfortunately, were unable to accommodate all requests for inclusion in this course. The live auction was a fun and successful venture. Auctioneers, Drs. Petros Levounis and Charles Silberstein, raised over $5,000. An anonymous donor subsequently matched those funds with an additional $5,000, surpassing all previous years with 100% of funds dedicated to support educational scholarships for residents and trainees.  Many thanks to our contributors and to those who made purchases - we would not have been successful without YOU!   Honoring our recently deceased AAAP founding member and former Editor of The American Journal on Addictions, Dr. Sheldon Miller,  a collection of his art-work on notecards was made available for purchase at the meeting and remain available for purchase on the AAAP website,  via electronic or hardcopy.  Dr. Sheldon’s naturescapes are riveting and beautifully capture nature at its most spectacular. 

Just prior to the Annual meeting and the “Addictions and their Treatment” course, AAAP held Steering Committee meetings for our national SAMHSA grants Physicians’ Clinical Support System- Buprenorphine (PCSSB, Prescribers’ Clinical Support System for Opioid Therapies (PCSS-O, These projects have been extremely well received and we urge you to visit the websites and take advantage of the educational resources and trainings that are not only an invaluable resource but FREE of charge. Our newest initiative, PCSS-O, has representatives from numerous national professional organizations including but not limited to: American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pain Medicine, American Academy of Pediatrics, American Association for the Treatment of Opioid Dependence, American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians, American Dental Association, American Medical Association, American Academy of Neurology, American Osteopathic Academy of Addiction Medicine, American Pain Society, American Psychiatric Association, California Academy of Family Physicians, Coalition of Physician Education, National Medical Association, Society of General Internal Medicine and Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, participating in discussions on educational needs for the field. Available on both PCSS websites are FREE monthly webinars, online modules, experts of the month listservs and peer support programs.

AAAP meeting evaluations and feedback received has been overwhelmingly positive, particularly with regards to the quality of the sessions including: symposia, paper/poster presentations, workshops and the presenters.   As in the past years the poster luncheons and the Dessert with the Experts were highlights of the week’s events. Prior to the Annual Meeting, AAAP launched the release of AAAP’s 2012 Self-Assessment examination for FREE to all AAAP members who attended the meeting and followed by a live session from Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz updating participants on AAAP’s Maintenance of Certification (MOC) activities and plans for the future. Both were so well received that in January, 2013, AAAP made the Self-Assessment examination available for members for $99 and non-members for $229. If you would like to learn more about or purchase the 2012 Self-Assessment exam, please go to AAAP’s website  Our plans are to continue providing a Self-Assessment examination FREE to all members who attend the annual meeting but we will also provide an opportunity to purchase the examination online for members and non-members following the annual meeting as well. We are already working on creating an MOC Zone on AAAP’s website and creating a variety of resources like Performance in Practice (PIP) products - to make the MOC process as easy as possible for our members. Stay tuned for more.

Plans are well underway for the 2013 annual meeting which will be held in Scottsdale, Arizona December 5-8, 2013. Call for Symposia are imminently due to be released, so check your emails. For more information, please contact AAAP’s National Office at (401) 524-3076 or email

If you are not an AAAP member, we urge you to consider joining. AAAP members receive a number of advantages including discounts on cutting-edge information, trainings, and educational resources focused on treating those with substance use and mental health disorders. Also members benefit from numerous resources AAAP has created for physicians to meet their needs for the requirements for Maintenance of Certification and preparation for Board certification.  To learn more about AAAP membership, please call our office at (401) 524-3076 or email