New tool a boon for smaller groups
Creating and maintaining a dynamic Web presence isn’t easy—especially for many smaller state orthopaedic societies that don’t have a Web site budget or the requisite technical expertise. To overcome those obstacles and enable smaller orthopaedic societies to create and maintain their own association Web site, the AAOS launched a new program last December.
This new program provides an easy method for groups to create an Internet presence using simple fill-in-the-blanks forms. This system also provides the capability to effortlessly upload Word, PowerPoint, and Adobe PDF documents that can be used to complement and enhance the information that has been posted.
Templates make it easy
The system uses predefined template families. Web site owners can choose any of eight designs when building the site. They can also switch templates whenever they want without having to manually re-enter any information.
Each family includes six sections: Home, About Us, News & Events, Annual Meeting, Government Relations, and Membership. Societies can modify the section names to correspond to the nomenclature used in their state. Sections that contain no content are not displayed.
The Home page can include information describing the society, an upcoming Annual Meeting, legislative activities, future events, and membership. A small photo library is also available.
The About Us page may contain detailed information about the organization, such as its purpose, goals, mission, and activities. This is also a good page to list contact information such as the office location and the current board of directors.
News & Events contains a calendar of all internal and external events pertinent to the society, as well as society newsletters, press releases, and other information. Events can easily be updated from an administrative screen.
The Annual Meeting page displays all information relevant to a past or upcoming annual meeting including a Google® map of its location. Additional information such as on-location photographs, links to meeting sponsors, meeting programs, and registration forms can also be displayed here.
On the Government Relations page, societies can showcase current legislative activities, information about the state political action committee, links to other Web sites, and a photo gallery. The page also includes a zip code function so members can locate their federal and state legislative representatives.
Finally, the Membership section could contain contact information, a membership application, and perhaps the society’s bylaws.
Check it out
In the first month after its introduction, 10 state orthopaedic societies successfully established Web sites using the new program. They include Delaware, Hawaii, Kansas, Kentucky (Fig. 1), Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and Mid-Central States.
Although these state societies use generic Web site addresses (URLs), a society could purchase and use a custom name instead (for example, www.DelewareOrthoSociety.org)
This system was originally developed for state orthopaedic societies, but other orthopaedic associations (such as regional societies or small specialty groups) can also take advantage of this opportunity to create a Web site. In fact, one regional society—Mid-Central States Orthopaedic Society, Inc.—already has.
Find out more
For additional information (general questions and overview) concerning this new AAOS program, contact Susan Koshy, manager of state society and legislative affairs, at (847) 384-4332 or firstname.lastname@example.org
For technical questions and information on how to get started, contact Pam Butenshen, senior programmer/analyst, in the information services department, at (847) 384-4282 or email@example.com
Jim Ogle is the AAOS director of information services. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org