New offerings, innovations meet today's learning styles


Published 1/1/2016
Terry Stanton

The 2016 AAOS Annual Meeting … Focused on You

his March, Orlando, Florida, will offer more than just sunny weather, Disney World, Universal Studios, and great food. The AAOS Annual Meeting will bring to this beautiful city orthopaedic leaders with unparalleled knowledge and an array of educational offerings focused on the needs of today's orthopaedic surgeons—at any stage of their careers.

At this year's Annual Meeting (March 1–5), the choices will be overflowing and inviting, with a program attendees can tailor to precisely serve their professional and educational aspirations.

This year's meeting provides a wealth of options and the opportunity to earn up to 37 AMA PRA Category 1 CreditsTM. Among the offerings will be the following:

  • 32 symposia
  • 923 paper presentations
  • 576 posters
  • 88 scientific exhibits 
  • Orthopaedic Video Theater with more than 80 videos
  • Specialty Day, featuring full programs by orthopaedic specialty societies
  • Electronic Skills Presentations in the newly redesigned Technology Theater
  • New learning formats and free programming

"The Annual Meeting promises great education with many choices of delivery. This comprehensive program has something for all," said James R. Ficke, MD, chair of the Central Program Committee.

"At the Annual Meeting, we have many options to meet preferred learning styles," he continued. "Both our tried-and-true lecture-based and didactic programs—such as symposia, Instructional Course Lectures (ICLs), and paper presentations—and many new exciting platforms for learning will be available."

Dr. Ficke encourages all to download the MyAcademy mobile app, which will provide both functionality and resources. Handouts for ICLs, evaluations to complete and submit, the Technical Exhibits floor plan, and a way to send messages to colleagues, tweet the Academy, and play games for points and a chance to win fun prizes are all part of the app.

New formats
One of the new formats, "Showdowns," features a debate between leaders in the field. The audience will have the opportunity to pick the winner. "This promises to be fun and entertaining while providing knowledge," Dr. Ficke said. Showdowns on hip and shoulder topics are scheduled.

Another new event is "Flash Five: What's Coming Down the Pike." Dr. Ficke explains that this is a "burst of knowledge given in 5 minutes by the presenter. Attendees will hear from 10 leading experts providing insight on critical points and what lies ahead."

In "The Way I See It," attendees can "learn the whys" of what accomplished surgeons do in their field of expertise. "You can benefit from the inside story—what each presenter wants you to know about a top-of-the-mind issue," Dr. Ficke noted.

The meeting promises numerous other, stimulating ways to participate and absorb knowledge and skills. "We provide opportunities for attendees to interact with both colleagues and seasoned faculty," Dr. Ficke said. "For example, we offer Case Presentation courses, expert-guided poster tours, and the 'Ask an Expert' sessions in the Technical Exhibit Hall. Attendees can bring case challenges on a flash drive and present them for diagnosis and recommendation during these sessions."

He also urges attendees to take one of 22 Poster Tours for a curated look at hand-picked entries. The "guided tours" are presented daily at the Poster Stage in Academy Hall. Two tours will given in Spanish and two in Portuguese. At the Poster Breakfast Ceremony on Friday at 7:00 a.m., attendees can meet and greet the Best Poster winners.

Special events
Dr. Ficke also called attention to the Presidential Symposium on Friday, March 4, from 8:00 a.m.–10:00 a.m. The topic, selected by AAOS President David D. Teuscher, MD, is "Bundled and Emerging Payment Models in Orthopaedics." Speakers will "provide important and timely information we as orthopaedists need to know about evolving payment models," said Dr. Ficke.

A symposium on "Gunshot and Explosive Wounds" on Wednesday, March 2, 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m., is the result of a collaboration between the AAOS and the Guest Nation of Colombia. This symposium will discuss the impact of high-, intermediate-, and low-velocity gunshots and other violent wounds. Evaluating patients, surgical and nonsurgical treatments, and rehabilitation will also be covered.

The Game Changers Paper session on Friday, March 4, 1:30 p.m.–3:30 p.m. has been restyled to include 1 hour of presentations on research that could change how orthopaedics is practiced. The second hour of the session will focus on "The Way I See It: Orthopaedists Changing the Game," with practitioners sharing cutting-edge concepts and techniques.

Self-directed learning will be abundantly available. Choices include the scientific exhibits and posters in both traditional and electronic formats, peer-reviewed video and multimedia programs at the Orthopaedic Video Theater, and the latest technology and applications on display in the Technical Pavilion.

Resident features
A new offering promising fun for rising surgeons is the Resident Bowl, on Thursday, from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 pm. Residents will compete against one another in a game-style setting. "It is an open event so those of us who can not participate can watch and cheer them on," said Dr. Ficke.

Residents also will have a chance to pose questions to faculty using Twitter during the Resident Core Competencies Symposium on Friday, 10:30 a.m.–12:30 p.m., using @AAOSPearls. In addition, the symposium will be webcast; residency program directors are invited to sign up at to view this symposium. Registration is required for webcast participation.

The AAOS Annual Meeting is also on Facebook (AAOS Annual Meeting) and Twitter (@AAOS Annual); use #AAOS2016 to join the conversation. For more information, visit

Terry Stanton is a senior science writer for AAOS Now. He can be reached at