Amputee Coalition Celebrates 25 Years at Conference

The Amputee Coalition celebrated its 25-year anniversary at its national conference held in Kansas City, Mo., June 2-4. More than 900 people with limb loss and exhibitors from 44 states and six foreign countries were present for educational seminars, peer group and support group training and athletic and social events, according to a press release.

“On behalf of the Amputee Coalition, we are pleased with the number of people who attended from so many walks of life,” Kendra Calhoun, Amputee Coalition president and chief executive officer, stated in the release. “This was a very successful conference. Not only was it a celebration of our first 25 years, but it was an occasion to see old friends, make new friends, socialize and share valuable information presented in our many seminars. The attendees and their families, the Amputee Coalition’s board of directors, orthotists and prosthetists, military and government personnel and vendors have given us excellent feedback on this gathering. We will now use that momentum to gear up for regional gatherings in 2012 and the 2013 national conference.”

Highlights of the conference included:

· Presentation of the Christina Skoski, MD, Scholarship to Anne Garofalo;

· More than 50 educational seminars that included wellness/prevention, technology and educational sessions, concluding on Sunday with specialized peer visitor and support group training for those who qualified;

· A vast array of the most modern prosthetic technology and bionics in the exhibit hall, with more than 75 vendors displaying their wares, products and services; and

· Awards of 22 Bridge to Ability scholarships to first-time conference attendees, in partnership with Hanger Prosthetics and Orthotics.

“On the occasion of the Amputee Coalition’s 25th year, 2011 has been a year of many accomplishments,” Calhoun said. “Awareness celebrations took place throughout the country in recognition of April as Limb Loss Awareness Month. Thirty-five governors signed proclamations proclaiming April as Limb Loss Awareness Month in their states. For a second year, we have a record number of campers at the Amputee Coalition’s Paddy Rossbach Youth Camp and we are at capacity. The inaugural Limb Loss Task Force White Paper was released and is providing valuable information on limb loss statistics and trends. We have increased our work with the military for their peer visitor program. On the legislative front, we have impacted state and federal insurance fairness legislation.”

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