The AAOS Annual Meeting has been getting greener for years. Mobile apps, electronic messaging, and free Wi-Fi have made going green easier, more economical, and more user-friendly. Educational components of the Annual Meeting have used electronic evaluations for several years. The Annual Meeting Proceedings has been available electronically since 2009, first on CD-Rom and now on a user-friendly website that is open and available to AAOS members for 2 years after the meeting.
In 2011, the Central Instructional Course Committee approved a plan to provide handouts electronically for the first time. Advance registrants received a link enabling them to access the handouts for each course they were attending. Initially, only a small percentage of registrants accessed the link, but every year the popularity of this option increases.
For the 2015 Annual Meeting, the Central Instructional Course Committee has decided that printed handouts will no longer be available at course rooms. Instead, attendees will be invited to access course handouts online, using a link announced 2 weeks prior to the meeting. The elimination of paper handouts will result in significant cost savings as well as benefit the environment.
According to Quin Throckmorton, MD, chair of the 2015 Central Instructional Course Committee, “The AAOS has been moving toward a paperless meeting for years. We believe that 2015 is the time to make the final leap away from paper.”
AAOS members will receive a link to the handout site when they register for the meeting. The site will contain the thousands of handouts put together by faculty for all the various courses. In addition, it will have instructions on how members can make notes and bookmark a pdf.
Handouts will also be sold as single pdfs and on flash drives (full set) in the Resource Center. The Orthopaedic Review Course and some special sessions will continue to offer paper handouts for the foreseeable future.
Kathie Niesen, CMP, is the education manager in the AAOS department of convention and meeting services. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org