How do you feel about in-person AUA meetings and the new practice guidelines introduced there?

Urology Times JournalVol 51 No 07
Volume 51
Issue 07

"Pandemic meetings were different because they were virtual. To be honest, those weren’t really good. I prefer to go to the meeting and be with other people and see them face-to-face," says Robert Gossett, MD.

“I wasn’t at the AUA [meeting] this year; I had just gone to a class reunion, and had to get back to work, so I couldn’t go. Otherwise, I like to go to them when I can. Actually, I’m not a kid anymore; I’m nearing the end of my career, but after I retire, I’ll still probably go to at least a couple of meetings.

Pandemic meetings were different because they were virtual. To be honest, those weren’t really good. I prefer to go to the meeting and be with other people and see them face-to-face.

You may not have had to travel for the virtual sessions, but that’s not very satisfactory. I’d rather be right there with folks so I can ask questions and discuss things with them.

They had a number of new practice guidelines discussed at this year’s meeting, and I’ll absolutely be looking at what they covered to see where I stand on them and that sort of thing. The availability of improved therapeutic agents guided by DNA testing and that sort of thing is very impressive. So, I’ll be checking that out.”

Robert Gossett, MD

Shelby, North Carolina

Laurence Levine, MD

Laurence Levine, MD

“I’ve been going to AUA meetings for 39 years, ever since I was a junior resident, both to attend sessions and to present research.

Virtual meetings lack something that is enhanced when you are physically present. It’s also easier when you know you’ve dedicated time to go to the AUA [meeting]. Leaving your office, you’ll be far more incentivized to participate in sessions at the meeting, whereas if it’s virtual, there’s the temptation to continue working, to fill your office hours, and perhaps not attend.

When it’s virtual, it’s easier to “blow off” the meeting, but if you’re there, you’re much more apt to want to make good use of your time and attend sessions that you find interesting or important to your practice.

Furthermore, there’s the value of the exhibit hall. There, you learn about current technology and/or treatments that you may want to investigate further, potentially for your own practice. I spend a fair amount of time in the exhibit hall every year, especially this year, because I was looking for some equipment and wanted to speak to companies about it.

Several of the new guidelines likely will affect my practice: the prostate cancer and the priapism guidelines are most apt to be important in my day-to-day practice. Guidelines are something I use to guide me to the appropriate evaluation and treatment of these problems. I don’t look at them as ‘This is the way I must to do things,’ but by and large, unless there are extenuating circumstances that don’t pertain in a specific case, I would follow the guidelines.”

Laurence Levine, MD

Chicago, Illinois

“Unfortunately, I was not able to attend this year. I was really too busy with my practice; I couldn’t take the time off. It’s been a while since I’ve been able to attend the AUA meeting, it’s just too difficult to get away.

I enjoy going when I can because I like to catch up with old friends and colleagues and listen to the lectures, but it’s been challenging to get away from my practice.

Virtual sessions would certainly make it easier in terms of the time it would take. There’s probably a role for both virtual and in-person meetings. If they could have [it] in person but also have the option to watch it over Zoom or virtually, it might be something to consider.

I will definitely be reviewing the guidelines they introduced there and will apply them to my patients. That’s something I do. I value looking at them. I enjoy the updates, following them so that I know I’m up-to-date on the latest practice recommendations and know I’m doing the best for my patients.”

Jared Berkowitz, MD

Frederick, Maryland

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