The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) welcomed more than 450 attendees to the PH Professional Network (PHPN) Symposium Sept. 30-Oct. 3. Symposium was completely online for the first time because of the pandemic.

Health care professionals spent four days learning about the latest advancements in pulmonary hypertension (PH) research and care while earning continuing education credits. PH professionals shared their expertise and findings in informative sessions.

Attendee Feedback

This year’s event kicked off Sept. 30 with Advocacy Day. Nearly 50 attendees from 25 states met virtually with lawmakers to discuss legislation that could improve the lives of people with PH. Participants urged support for the Safe Step Act, NIH research funding and preserving access to charitable assistance. PHA conducted 36 meetings with the offices of 21 senators and 15 representatives.

“As health care professionals who are constantly running into obstacles with laws and insurance with our patients and their medications, it’s vital to advocate in any way we can for our patients. Advocacy Day is one way to make a huge impact in advocacy for our PH patients,” says Advocacy Day attendee Teya Thai, PH and heart failure case manager at Nebraska Medicine.

Advocates in Action

One of the most popular sessions was “Navigating Difficult Discussion in PH” presented by Rana Awdish, M.D., FACP, FCCP. In the session, Dr. Awdish shared tips to master sensitive, personalized conversations between PH-treating teams and patients and families. She highlighted the importance of listening to patients’ wants and concerns and responding to emotion with empathy.

“To be efficient is never the goal. The goal is to have understanding,” she said.

♥️ #MedTwitter #heart2curePH #therightheart

— RanaAwdishMD (@RanaAwdish) October 2, 2021

Poster Hall

Participants could discover recent findings in PH research by visiting the Poster Hall in the Symposium virtual platform. The Poster Hall featured 24 posters about COVID-19 and PAH, quality of life, treatment outcomes and more.

Trivia Night Fundraiser

Symposium attendees tested their general and PH knowledge Oct. 1 during virtual PHPN Trivia Night. All funds raised for Trivia Night benefit PHA’s Conference Scholarship Fund. Fifty-two Trivia Night registrants raised $1,300 to help PH patients and their caregivers attend PHA’s 2022 International PH Conference and Scientific Sessions in Atlanta.