Are You Ready for the NORM Annual Conference?

Web Exclusives
Andrea Zlatkus, CPM, CHRC
Editor-in-Chief, Rheumatology Practice Management
President, NORM

It is hard to believe that summer is practically over—where does the time go? As we transition into autumn, I know many of you are looking forward to the cooler weather, pumpkin-spiced everything, and the kaleidoscope of colors associated with the season. Here at National Organization of Rheumatology Managers (NORM), members are also looking forward to our upcoming annual conference, which will be held October 4-6, 2018, in Tampa, FL.

This issue of Rheumatology Practice Management (RPM) provides a sneak peek at some of the “Hidden Treasures of Rheumatology” that await attendees of this year’s conference. Be sure to check out the article “Beware! A Pirate Is Lurking Around NORM,” which provides an overview of some of the exciting presentations and activities we have in store for you.

In the article “Pattern Is the New Black,” Rick Olsen, PhD, discusses strategies for improving adaptability among employees in your office, and the importance of understanding individual communication styles, motivators, and demotivators. Dr Olsen will be presenting more pearls of wisdom at this year’s conference; I highly recommend that you attend one of his sessions if you can.

I am also happy to announce the start of a new feature in RPM called “NORM Member Profile,” based on a suggestion made during a NORM focus group last winter. Our first profile highlights the talents and achievements of Judy Stovall, whom I have worked alongside for many years on the NORM Educational Committee; she is also an exceptional practice manager and a good friend. If you are attending this year’s conference, you will not want to miss Judy’s hilarious skit, “I Don’t Have a Clue,” which she will perform after the Regulatory Update session. If you would like to nominate a NORM member to be featured in one of our future issues, please e-mail me at

Also in this issue, Jean Acevedo, LHRM, CPC, CHC, CENTC, AAPC Fellow, discusses helpful strategies for decreasing the likelihood of payer denials and overpayment requests; Andre C. Smith, CMPM, CPB, CRHC, explains how you and your staff can organize and participate in a Walk to Cure Arthritis; and Chelsea Vassaur offers advice on how to eat healthy even when you are traveling.

To learn more about the topics that will be presented at this year’s conference, please check out our “Minute with the Board” blogs, located on NORM’s website at (click on the “News” tab on our homepage). If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter, you can also view the blogs on those platforms.

I hope I have the opportunity to see all of you at the conference. If you see me, please come up and introduce yourself. I would love the chance to talk with each and every one of you. Remember, you are not alone; NORM is here to help by giving you the tools to steer a new course for your practice and patients.

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