Message from the AAS President, Dr. Steven Vernino

Message from the AAS President, Dr. Steven Vernino

Dear AAS members and friends,

I hope you are all well and healthy. There are a number of exciting upcoming activities at the American Autonomic Society for 2022, and I wanted to give you some updates.
•         Annual meeting
•         Getting involved with the AAS on committees and special interest groups
•         Activities for trainees
•         Updates to the AAS website
•         New initiatives to provide autonomic education outreach

Annual meeting
Despite the virtual format, the 2021 AAS meeting was (mostly) a great success. We had excellent speakers and science abstracts, but our virtual poster session fell flat. We have all missed the personal interactions of a live meeting.

We are excited about the 2022 AAS Meeting – November 2-5, 2022 in Maui, Hawaii.  Mark your calendars.

Early information about the meeting and abstract submission will be coming in April.  Abstracts will be due in June.

Getting involved
If you haven’t joined the AAS (or haven’t paid your 2022 dues), please do so right away.  The AAS annual dues are very reasonable compared to other professional societies and we are continuously looking for ways to increase the value of membership.

There are many opportunities to get more involved with the AAS. AAS committees are listed on the AAS website. These committees do the work of the Society and are very active. Please contact Amber or the respective committee chair if you are interested.  In particular, we are looking for new members of the AAS Science Committee. The Science Committee’s main tasks are to review abstracts for the annual meeting and to participate in the annual meeting as judges for the trainee poster competition.  This is a great way to engage with colleagues and learn about the latest autonomic science (and you do NOT need to be a scientist to be on the science committee, all AAS members are encouraged).

Special interest groups (SIGs) at the AAS can help you get connected with others around the country who share your interests.  SIGs are open to all members. Again, please contact Amber at AAS or the respective SIG chair to sign up.  In particular, please watch for information about upcoming meetings of the POTS-SIG and Women in Autonomics interest group (WIG). The WIG is planning a virtual event this Spring that will be open to all AAS members.

Virtual mentoring session for trainees
A major goal of the AAS is to attract and support trainees who represent the future of autonomic medicine. The AAS provides markedly reduced membership and meeting registration rates for trainee members as well as special events for networking and mentorship. If you have trainees, please encourage and support their participation with AAS.  In June, the AAS will host a virtual mentor-mentee event. Invitations will go out starting in March. The 2021 mentor-mentee event was excellent, and the Trainee Committee has been hard at work to make this year even better.

Updates to the AAS website
Our Communications Committee has been hard at work updating the new AAS website. In the next phase of the website enhancement, we will be adding a “members only” section of the website which will host exclusive content for members including a membership directory and access to select content from prior meetings. Later this year, paid AAS members will receive a message with their personal access password to this new section.

Autonomic education outreach
The Education Committee has also been busy with new initiatives to increase “outreach” from the AAS. We are now offering live virtual lectures on autonomic disorder topics to residency programs around the country. The goal is to expand awareness of autonomic disorders to more physicians in family medicine, neurology, internal medicine, etc. that would otherwise receive no autonomic education.

All the best for 2022,

Steven Vernino, MD, PhD
President, American Autonomic Society