The Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists

Committee on Education Update

As we start the new year with some bittersweet memories from 2021, we are again reminded that the pandemic still exists with the most recent surge again filling hospitals and ICUs alike. This current surge with the highly transmissible Omicron variant has not only overwhelmed hospitals but has also impacted the critical care workforce across the board. This has again upended many a plan, including the scheduled in-person annual meeting in Hawaii this March which has been converted to a virtual-only format. Although the decision was not easy, we believe that it was in the best interest of our members and the society in general. A lot of behind-the-scenes activity and hard work has gone into making this transition seamless and we are confident that we will be able to provide our membership, the same high quality and enriching content that the in-person meeting would have provided. For this, we would like to thank our administrative and education staff partners from the IARS, SOCCA and AUA. It was not easy to suddenly pivot and reorganize everything on the same dates as the actual in person meeting, within a less than two months span, and we would have not been here had it not been for their tireless efforts. The combined IARS/AUA/SOCCA meeting will be held virtually from March 17-20, with the dedicated SOCCA meeting day on Friday, March 18; and aligned SOCCA-IARS content on Saturday, March 19.

We will kickstart the meeting with the first ever SOCCA women’s section meetup on the evening prior to the SOCCA meeting day. Kudos to Dr. Shahla Siddiqui for her dedication and efforts to spearhead the creation of the Women in Critical Care group within SOCCA and organizing this event. The very popular SOCCA early career group networking event, led by Dr. Alisha Bhatia, will take place following the women’s section meetup the same evening.

We will open the meeting with a session discussing the future of critical care practice with emphasis on the nuts and bolts of billing and reimbursement as it impacts critical care anesthesiologists working in various practice settings. Moderated by Dr. Michael Nurok, this session brings together a diverse group of speakers from different parts of the country and promises to enhance our understanding of one of the most complex yet important aspects of our practice.

The next educational session will explore the challenges associated with post-intensive care syndrome. Dr. Robert White will be discussing post-ICU survivorship in the context of COVID related critical illness, while Dr. Michael Devinney will shed some light on what we can do in the ICU to prevent post ICU discharge cognitive dysfunction. Dr. Kimberly Rengel will then discuss the importance of muscle health and integrity in impacting quality of life in ICU survivors.

The third educational session will exhibit a pro-con debate on the use of steroids in ARDS. Moderated by Dr. Joseph Meltzer, we will have Dr. Shaz Shaefi advocating for the use of steroids in ARDS, while Dr. Vadim Gudzenko will be presenting evidence to the contrary. This promises to be a highly engaging and informative session especially since the pendulum related to the use of steroids in ARDS tends to swing in either direction every few years!

Our last educational session for the day will be a “grab bag” session with snap talks on some of the hottest topics in critical care, including identification and management of the physiologically difficult airway, care of critically ill potential organ donors, management of critically ill obstetric patients, and discussions around collaborative management of cardiac arrest as well as elaboration of a surgical home model for the liver transplant patients, discussing pre and post-transplant continuum of care.

Whether you will be joining us from a beach in Hawaii or from the comfort of your own home or office, we promise you will not be disappointed with the quality of the educational content and the networking albeit virtual at this event. “See you” at SOCCA 2022!


Ashish K. Khanna, MD, FCCP, FCCM, FASA
Chair, SOCCA Committee on Education; Annual Program Chair SOCCA 2021
Wake Forest University School of Medicine
Winston-Salem, North Carolina
Allison Dalton, MD
Annual Program Co-Chair SOCCA 2022
University of Chicago
Chicago, Illinois
Kunal Karamchandani, MD, FCCM
Annual Program Co-Chair SOCCA 2022
UT Southwestern Medical Center
Dallas, Texas