CAPO Conference Impressive

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The Canadian Association of Prosthetists and Orthotists (CAPO) biannual conference is Canada's largest national O&P event. According to several exhibitors, 2004 CAPO, held in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, was a very well organized and united meeting, offering an impressive agenda of speakers and informative sessions.

The CAPO membership includes 350 practitioners, of which 256 attended this year's event. According to Tami Beatty, event planner for Ohio Willow Wood, "We maintained good booth traffic for all three days, and sessions were very well attended. The meeting organizers did a very good job of pre-show planning, and Chris Kraft went above and beyond in meeting the needs of exhibitors."

Particularly important to Tony Barr, president of the Barr Foundation, was the considerable interest CAPO members showed in learning more about the Ertl osteomyoplastic amputation and reconstructive procedures, as presented by Jan Ertl, MD, and Raymond Francis, CP. Barr stated, "In one presentation, Bob Gailey, who is well respected in amputee rehabilitation, addressed the importance of equality in three key areas in obtaining complete and successful prosthetic rehabilitation: 1) surgical procedures, 2) proper application and selection of prosthetic components, and 3) physical therapy, gait training, and exercise." Barr, a strong proponent of the Ertl procedure, has hopes that Canadian practitioners will become advocates for the procedure within the country's healthcare system.

Otto Bock HealthCare Canada representatives also said the show was a great success. "Otto Bock's marketing, sales, and professional personnel were very busy identifying the company's latest trends in prosthetics and orthotics," said Sandra Ramdial, CP, manager of custom silicone services for Otto Bock HealthCare Canada. She added, "This year's hot topics among the Canadian practitioners seemed to center around myo electronics and custom silicone services."

Among the several sessions offered at CAPO were "Technical and Clinical Aspects of Energy-Storing Lower-Limb Orthoses," "Orthotic Management of Cerebral Palsy," and "Orthotic Research: An Evolving Paradigm." Through the biannual event, the association's objective is to ensure that Canadian professionals have access to educational and professional resources and a forum to advance their profession for the continual improvement of prosthetic and orthotic services in Canada.