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Conference Discusses Healthcare Professionals With Disabilities

Conference Discusses Healthcare Professionals With Disabilities

October 20, 2006 - Healthcare workers with disabilities will be the subject of an upcoming seminar at Collin County Community College District (Collin).

"Scrubs and Disabilities: Exploring the Role of Healthcare Professionals with Disabilities" will be 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m., Friday, Nov. 3, at the Collin Spring Creek Campus Conference Center, 2800 E. Spring Creek Parkway.

According to Collin's David Gibson, respiratory care director, the seminar will feature speakers, panel discussions and break-out sessions about the issues surrounding individuals with disabilities in healthcare positions, such as nurses and respiratory therapists.

Gibson said students, faculty and staff from other colleges and universities, hospital human resource professionals and others are invited. The purpose of the event is to foster acceptance and change the attitude toward those with disabilities and their role in healthcare. The overall question this seminar poses is: an individual with disabilities can contribute, but what are his or her limits and what are reasonable accommodations for these individuals?

The keynote speakers are Randy Snow, Robin Mazzuca, RN, MPH, CEN, and Susan Fleming, MN, RN.

Snow was a junior in high school when he lost the use of his legs in a farming accident. Now, he is a nationally recognized sales associate, a Fortune 500 speaker and a gold medal wheelchair athlete. In addition to being featured on CNN, ESPN and USA Today, he was the first Paralympian to be inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame and he helped kick off the 1996 Paralympic Games by receiving the Paralympic torch from President Bill Clinton in Washington, D.C.

Mazzuca is the medical editor and writer for the Emergency Nurses Association in Des Plaines, Ill., where she provides consulting for research, clinical and injury prevention abstracts. She earned a Master of Public Health -- Community Health Sciences Generalist from the University of Illinois at Chicago. She also earned a bachelor of science in nursing and psychology from Elmhurst College in Illinois. She has more than 20 years of healthcare experience in the hospital and emergency care services.

Fleming is a perinatal clinical nurse specialist and maternity clinical instructor and lecturer with Washington State University. She has 32 years of hospital experience working in labor and delivery and the nursery, in addition to assisting mothers and fathers. Fleming graduated from the Los Angeles County Hospital School of Nursing in 1983 and returned to college in 2003 to earn her bachelor of science in nursing degree from Washington State University Intercollegiate College of Nursing RNB program. She completed her master of nursing from the University of Washington in Seattle in 2005.

She has published a number of articles and works at Deaconess Medical Center in Spokane and is a board member with Exceptional Nurse, an organization that supports nurses with disabilities.

Cost for the seminar is $79 before Friday, Oct. 6 and $99 afterwards. The event is free to Collin students, faculty and staff. The deadline for registration is Friday, Oct. 27. Seating is limited.

For more information or to register, contact Gibson at or Sharon Steele-Blackman, director of ACCESS, at

Collin County Community College District (Collin) serves more than 41,000 credit and continuing education students annually and offers more than 100 degree and certificate programs. The only public college in the county, Collin is a partner to business, government and industry, providing customized training and work force development.