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Join DSMIG-USA in Phoenix!

The 2024 DSMIG-USA Annual Symposium provides an interdisciplinary forum for sharing of knowledge and experiences related to the clinical care of individuals with Down syndrome across the lifespan, clinical research related to Down syndrome, and the development of Down syndrome clinics. This year's symposium will be held July 25-27, 2024 in Phoenix, Arizona. Don't miss this opportunity to connect with fellow Down syndrome experts from around the world to share ideas, ask questions, participate in meaningful discussions and network. Registration for the Symposium will open soon!


Symposium Hotel

The Symposium will be held at the JW Phoenix Desert Ridge Resort. Nestled within the serene beauty of Arizona's Sonoran Desert, the Resort offers a wide range of exceptional experiences. The hotel hosts one of Phoenix's premier pickleball facilities with 17 courts, a fully stocked pro shop and certified instruction. Their spectacular pool area features five pools, a relaxing lazy river, luxurious cabana cottages and pool suites. Golf aficionados can tee off on two championship courses, complete with PGA professional instructors, tournament play and club fittings. 

Join DSMIG in Phoenix this July! For more information on hotels, click here. 

Symposium Schedule

Friday, July 26, 2024


8:00-8:10 Welcome and Announcements, Katie Frank, PhD, OTR/L
8:15-9:00 Developing Capacity for Community-Based Participatory Research - A Community Research Advisory Board (CRAB)-Led Initiative, Dara Mendez, PhD, MPH; Mario Browne, MPH, CHES, CDP
9:05-10:05 Car Seats, Booster Seats, and Seat Belts; How to Make Them Work in Down Syndrome, Marilyn Bull, MD, FAAP, CPST; Anthony McGovern, MS, OTR, CPST
10:05-10:20 Break
10:20-11:05 NIH Panel, Meghan O'Neill, MD, FAAP; Melissa Parisi, MD, PhD
11:10-12:10 Top Posters, Andrew McCormick, MD
12:10-1:10 Lunch
1:15-2:45 Supported Decision Making Joint Session, (Noemi Spinazzi, MD, Moderator); Andrew McCormick, MD; Jon Meyers; Carolyn Tellalian, LCSW
2:45-3:00 Break
3:00-3:45 Sedation and Down Syndrome, James Hunt, MD
3:50-5:05 Part 1: Growing Pains: What We Know About Growth Hormone and Down Syndrome & Reaching New Heights
Part 2: Research on Musculoskeletal Abnormalities and IGF1 Signaling in Down Syndrome, Tariq Ahmad, MD; Joaquin Espinosa, PhD, Noemi Spinazzi, MD; Larry Suva, PhD
5:10-5:55 Practice Changing Articles - Update in the Medical Literature, Peter Bulova, MD; Kishore Vellody, MD
5:55-6:00 Closing Announcements, Maria Stanley, MD


Additional Activities

Thursday, July, 25, 2024

The Thursday activities are not accredited for continuing education credit.

11:00 AM-12:00 PM Medical Curriculum Workgroup; Leader: Kristie Marble, DO, FAAP

The Medical School Curriculum Workgroup addresses the inadequate education provided to medical students through the means of creating a standardized curriculum for medical schools to use. 

3:00-4:30 PM Therapy Group; Leader: Helen Milligan, PT, MPT

The Therapy Workgroup is a community within DSMIG-USA whose members are therapists and/or educators in the areas of Occupational Therapy, Physical Therapy, or Speech Therapy. The group has an interest in advancing knowledge regarding best practices as it relates to therapy when treating those with Down syndrome considering commonly seen issues which may respond to therapy interventions at various ages. 

3:00-4:30 PM Clinic Support Committee; Leader: Mary Stephens, MD, MPH, FAAFP, FAADM

This meeting, previously for Clinic Coordinators only, is now for any Down syndrome clinic staff member (new or seasoned) interested in receiving guidance and/or support for clinic development, management, or operations. During this meeting, attendees will learn about updates on the clinic support section of the DSMIG website, and then share needs and challenges, program ideas, and success stories. 

5:00-5:45 PM Project ECHO; Brian Chicoine, MD; Hannah Graham, MD

A 2021 study estimated that only 5% of adults with Down syndrome in the United States have access to a specialty clinic for adults with Down syndrome. While a comparable study of pediatric Down syndrome specialty clinics has not been conducted, the experiences of many DSMIG-USA members suggest that there is also inadequate access to pediatric Down syndrome clinics. In an effort to improve the medical care of individuals with Down syndrome who do not have access to a clinic and to support their healthcare providers, DSMIG-USA developed Down Syndrome Project ECHO in 2023. This presentation will provide a mock session of a Project ECHO meeting and demonstrate how an expert panel and other participants discuss and respond to a presentation by a healthcare provider seeking assistance with medical care for a person with Down syndrome. 

5:45-6:45 PM Member Meeting

Join your peers as we gather to celebrate the important programs that impacted DSMIG-USA since last year's meeting. Reports will be shared from committees, workgroups, and officers. 

6:45-8:30 PM Welcome Reception

Don't miss the chance to connect and engage with DSMIG members! Enjoy an evening of delicious hors d'oeuvres and refreshing drinks as you reconnect with fellow attendees in a relaxed and informal atmosphere. 

Saturday, July 27, 2024

The Saturday workgroups are offering continuing education credit (MOC credit will not be offered)

7:30-9:30 AM Adolescent and Adult Health Workgroup; Leaders: George Capone, MD, Mary Stephens, MD, MPH, FAAFP, FAADM

This workgroup will provide an update on the Adult Healthcare Projects currently underway (medical literature reviews, MH/Regression, dementia screening, weight-lifestyle management, and CME activities). Group discussion, Q&A are planned. 

9:45-11:45 AM DS-ASD Workgroup; Leaders: Lina Patel, PsyD; Noemi Spinazzi, MD; Margaret Froehlke, RN, BSN

This workgroup will include discussions on what has been learned about DS-ASD in the past year, how to apply that learning to improving the quality of care for individuals with co-occurring Down syndrome and autism spectrum disorder, and what needs to be learned in the next year to advance our understanding of how best to serve the needs of these individuals and their families. A summary and updates regarding ongoing projects will be given in addition to applicable information for use within a clinical setting. 

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Poster Presentation Gallery


Symposium Supporter Form

Your support matters to DSMIG-USA. Organizations that support the DSMIG-USA Annual Symposium highlight their support for the optimal health care and wellness of individuals with Down syndrome across the lifespan. Your support will help us achieve our goals to:

  • Educate professionals and trainees on the latest research and comprehensive care regarding Down syndrome.
  • Facilitate a network of health professionals caring for individuals with Down syndrome.
  • Support the development of Down syndrome Clinics.
  • Identify and disseminate best practices of care.
Support the 2024 DSMIG-USA Annual Symposium


Scholarship Applications are now closed.

The goal of the Down Syndrome Medical Interest Group (DSMIG-USA) Scholarship Program is to provide financial assistance for recipients to attend the DSMIG-USA Annual Symposium. The number of scholarships awarded each year will depend on available funding. The 2024 conference will take place from July 25-26, 2024 in Phoenix, Arizona. Two scholarships are available: The Rising Star Scholarship and Financial Need Scholarships. 

Learn More and Apply