VESTAL (WBNG) -- Health care professionals, local leaders,and community members gathered to discuss the Affordable Care Act and addiction at the 14th annual Binghamton Symposium on Health Care Management and Policy on Friday.
Professor of management at Binghamton University Manas Chatterji organized the event.
He said it gives professionals in all fields the chance to collaborate and learn from each other about different topics of health care.
"Many people in different areas of health care and the speakers together, and also the elected officials come together, this is a very interdisciplinary subjects," he said.
Various panels discussed the pros and cons of the Affordable Care Act, different ways to approach paying for health care and the status of providing health care for seniors, children and the underprivileged.
Chatterji said a main topic would also be the Opioid crisis.
Professor at SUNY Upstate Medical University and medical director of Syracuse Behavioral Health Ross Sullivan explained one of the major problems facing addiction is the stigma.
"My message is that addiction or substance abuse disorders is a brain disease." he said.
Sullivan said it's a great opportunity to be able to come to the area and collaborate with others in the field all working toward a common goal.
"What can people do, you know they have to talk to their doctors, you know look at their local legislators and there are places for help and hope, it's just getting there and taking that first step and that's what we're here to talk about today is trying to make it more accessible, just like any other disease," he said.
Chatterji said he hopes to continue planning the event next year.