Greater New York Health Community to Address Diagnosis and Treatment of Middle Ear Infections In Children

Conference to Take Place March 19, 2000, In New York City

Albany, March 17, 2000 – The New York State Health Department, the Medical Society of the State of New York, the SUNY Health Science Center at Brooklyn and community–based practitioners will conduct a diagnostic workshop and management consensus conference on acute otitis media in children.

The session, entitled "New Strategies for Judicious Use of Antibiotics in Acute Otitis Media," will be held on Sunday, March 19, at The New York Academy of Medicine, 1216 Fifth Avenue, New York City, from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

Otitis media, more commonly known as "middle ear infection," is one of the most common childhood illnesses. The conference participants will discuss the diagnosing of Otitis, as well as the high cost of antibiotics that are often used even though common, inexpensive antibiotics continue to be effective. Also, discussions will include the cost of this disease as it relates to physician visits and medicines, and the time away from work to parents and their employers.

The conference also will include members from the New York Region Otitis Project Committee, which was formed to address growing concerns among clinical and public health practitioners regarding the over–diagnosis of acute otitis media, excessive and inappropriate treatments, and the emergence of bacterial resistance to antimicrobial drugs. The first objective of the committee was to evaluate the current literature and practice in the diagnosis and treatment of otitis media, and this will be a major focus of the consensus conference.

The program will feature workshops conducted by an internationally–recognized faculty, including: Richard E. Besser, M.D., Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, Georgia; Christopher J. Cates, MA, MRCGP, Hertfordshire Health Authority, Bushey Health Centre, United Kingdom; Wilbert Mason, M.D., M.P.H., Children's Hospital Medical Center, Los Angeles, California; Harry S. Miller, M.D., Children's Hospital, Albany Medical Center; Richard Rosenfeld, M.D., M.P.H., Director of Pediatric Otolaryngology, The Long Island College Hospital; Robert Rubin, M.D., Albert Einstein College of Medicine; EAM Sanders, M.D., Ph.D., University Hospital for Children, Utrecht, Netherlands; Robert Schiller, M.D., Chairman of Family Medicine, Beth Israel Medical Center.

Breakout sessions will be held at which participants will discuss: critical criteria for the diagnosis of acute otitis media; dealing with pressure to prescribe unneeded antibiotics; implementing the observation option; and, use of short–course antibiotic therapy.

The conference is endorsed by District 2, New York State, American Academy of Pediatrics and the New York State Academy of Family Practice, it has been designed for clinical practitioners who treat childhood acute otitis media, including pediatricians, otolaryngologists, family practitioners, emergency medicine physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants and other interested professionals.

For more information, contact Richard Propp, M.D., New York State Health Department, at (518) 473–5876.

3/17/00–32 OPA