Successful Florida Area Meeting

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By Karen Lappi, BS, CRA

February 2013—The AHRA Florida area meeting held in Ocala on January 24 had 30 attendees. The meeting started off with some light appetizers and time for networking. We had attendees from the Tampa/Clearwater area on the west coast and from Melbourne and Cocoa Beach on the east coast. We also had some attendees from north Florida areas. It was good to see folks travel to Ocala for this meeting. It was held at the auxiliary conference center at Munroe Regional Medical Center.

After our social time, the attendees were taken on a tour of the new Children’s Emergency Department which opened in 2012. This department contains nine patient rooms, a procedure room, triage area, digital x-ray system, and a very inviting waiting room. The entire project was funded by donations from the community and from employees of Munroe. The theme in this ED is land and sea. Half of the rooms are decorated with large murals of animals and the other half are decorated with fish and turtles. The theme extends onto the flooring as well. The theme in the x-ray room is ducks, with a large mural of ducks on the wall. The theme is carried over to the equipment itself with ducks on the electronic rack cabinet and on the vertical detector stand (see pictures below). This ED sees approximately 100 children each day.

After the tour, the attendees received dinner, catered by the dining room staff at Munroe. While eating dinner, AHRA president-elect Ed Yoder gave an update on AHRA activities and membership information. He encouraged attendees to join AHRA and to invite staff to join as well. It was good to have Ed at this meeting as he is a strong force in AHRA. Also attending the meeting was AHRA past-president, Glenn “Skip” Watkins. Skip has been an AHRA member since the 1970s and has seen significant changes over the decades in healthcare.

The guest speaker for the evening was Susan Worcester, RT(R)(CV), who delivered a very interesting talk on communication and listening skills for the medical professional. This is a very timely topic and one we all need to be aware of in these very challenging times in imaging. We learned whether we were a driver, analytical, amiable, or expressive. Susan explained how it is very important to know your style as well as the style of the person you are talking to so that communication can be maximized for the benefit of both parties. She also explained to us the importance of listening and how, as children, we spend time learning how to speak, write, and read; however, we do not learn how to listen appropriately and accurately. And listening is so important in the communication process. We thank Susan for her informative presentation and also thank Philips Healthcare for sponsoring this meeting.

Photos from the Children’s Emergency Department at Munroe Regional Medical Center:

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Karen Lappi, BS, CRA is the director of radiology/cardiology services at Munroe Regional Medical Center in Ocala, FL. She can be reached at

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