It’s hard to believe that just a little over a year ago the CDA Academy debuted during record heat for the end of May, up here on the campus of Dartmouth College in the Upper Valley of the Connecticut River. What’s new in number IV? Lots.The strong positive response to greenCDA and the rising interest in templated CDA and quality reporting from the EHR has led to new material on these topics. More significantly, we’ve taken feedback from I-II-III and augmented the core curriculum with a special track for policy makers and planners. The P&P track is shorter and combines the basics from the Implementer track with special sessions connecting the Big Picture dots with the way interoperability really works at the specification and implementation level. I’m not sure there is a better place to do this than here at the Academy and I think there is widespread need for just this perspective. The immediate inspiration for the P&P track came from a group of folks from the DC area who attended Academy II and said, not verbatim, “It’s worthwhile for us to come up here just so that we have the quality time to talk to each other.” And of course, the Academy atmosphere supported those conversations by including students working in the trenches making the next generation products Meaningful Use-ready and preparing providers to leverage these opportunities to provide better care. Not to mention the presence of the expert panelists, instructors and special guests — our guest expert for IV is Blackford Middleton, MD who will co-present in the P&P track and join us on our Tuesday expert panel. Just about the only pattern to the Academy that seems statistically and logically unlikely to be sustained is our amazing track record of stellar weather here in northern New England. Could it be that once again we’ll have 80 degree weather for our maiden evening canoeing and our Thetford BBQ? Possibly, as there may be some perverse dynamic in play since we had to rearrange our schedule due to weather when we met in San Diego — and that never happens out there. Stay tuned, should be a great week.