AMPHL Conferences: Reflections from a Founder

The 2017 AMPHL conference comes to a close. Our precious opportunity to learn about new technology, new accommodations, new techniques for approaching challenges, and, most importantly, the chance to see old friends and make new ones—goes by too fast. 

In his State of AMPHL address, Dr. Michael McKee stated, “We need emotional support also. All of us have experienced those dark days. The frustrations, feeling like we’re just ready to give up. It’s vital to have someone there to continue to encourage us.”

This, to me, is the heart of AMPHL, and why I helped found the organization in the late 1990s. I remember crying in the back of The Ohio State University—College of Veterinary Medicine barn during clinicals. I was overwhelmed by how significantly my hearing loss affected my ability to perform the tasks of my profession and learn. Other medical professionals with hearing loss helped me survive the most challenging part of my professional career.

And now, we go our separate ways across the world until, hopefully, we see each other at the next AMPHL conference and our faces light up as we rush to hug each other tight. The stories we share are about professional challenges, successes, failures, degrees obtained, new technology, job changes, marriages, divorces, illnesses, deaths, births, and kids growing up... When one adds up the actual time we've spend in physical proximity to each other (very little), and compares that to the depth of feelings we have for each can only say it's a magical bond that connects us all.

Be well, my friends. Be safe. Continue to dream and strive. Ask for help of me and others as needed...both professionally and personally. I know we'll continue to support each other as we have these past twenty years. Love to you all.


Danielle Rastetter, DVM

AMPHL co-Founder