I think I can speak for the SA Branch in thanking the Conference Committee, our generous sponsors, the fantastic line up of speakers and presenters, and last but not least, our energetic, engaging and enthusiastic delegates, all of whom contributed to a successful and enjoyable Adelaide Conference in October. Sadly, the weather was not as warm and welcoming, but we had a wonderful time being your host. I was particularly taken by the richness of the Aboriginal language which we learned from Kaurna and Narungga Elder, Jack Kaya Kudnuitya Buckskin, in his Welcome to Country, in particular the local name for Adelaide being the Land of the Red Kangaroo dreaming (Tarndanyagga) and a word for the place where many of us work kukkawadli (hospital). It was stimulating to be able to engage at many levels and ways during our first face-to-face conference since the pandemic hit. As always there were fascinating stories to be told, research (successful and unsuccessful in nature) shared, and networking to die for. It was for me inspirational and re-energising and I hope that carried across to all delegates. By the way, if by chance you attended the final close and left a white paper bag under your chair in the back row, let me know who you are and I will send the contents to you.
It is a great privilege for me to assume the role of President of HIMAA for the upcoming year, taking the baton from Cheens Lee, who juggled his daytime job, the arrival of his family’s third born and studying a Masters degree during his tenure. The Board and I sincerely thank Cheens for his dedication and support to our profession. Shortly after the Conference the Board met and elected James Katte as Senior Vice President (SVP) and Kara Pollard as Vice President (VP). In addition, we established the alignment of Board Directors with the various committees and groups, which will be uploaded to the Members Only section on the webpage, as part of their portfolio. The Board nominated and agreed on the casual appointment of Cassandra (Cassie) Rupnik as an additional Director and welcomed Shane Sanfilippo and Louise Edmonds to the Board.
I look forward to a busy agenda for the upcoming year. We have a significant event in the form of the IFHIMA/HIMAA Conference in Brisbane next October/ November; preparations are already well underway. I will be meeting with our AHIMA colleagues to share insights and experiences into the visibility, advocacy and representation of our profession. I want to pursue our vision To ensure health information management is seen as a valued and valuable health profession with purpose and practice for our professional community. This is not something I or the Board can achieve alone. I need each member to be a Vision ambassador to share and cultivate ideas and experiences, not only within our group but to the multi-disciplinary teams and diverse environments of our workplaces and beyond.
For instance, I would love to see an increase in our research work across the country, with articles offered for the HIM-I on your local knowledge, skills and practices. Every one of us has a story or two to share. Reach out to our supportive Research Committee and our Education Board to develop these stories into shared vision for your peers and inspire the next generation of HIMs, just as many of our Life Members were inspirational for us. Gear up with your local branch and raise issues of interest and challenge to create the conversation which can change the profession for the better. Join one of our Communities of Practice or committees to give support to your colleagues in addressing matters at the heart of what we do. There are so many ways as members you can become inspired! Help us to help you.
I hope to catch up with various groups in the upcoming months so that we can shine a light on our valuable profession.