“So there we were in a hotel bar in Dallas in the spring of 1974, just sitting around and talking … and that afternoon EMRA was born.” —Joseph F. Waeckerle, MD, FACEP, founding member
Explore This IssueACEP Now: Vol 38 – No 11 – November 2019
Emergency medicine was not yet recognized as a specialty when the Emergency Medicine Residents’ Association (EMRA) was established. That’s how pioneering our founders were. Brand-new emergency medicine residents whose futures were full of uncertainty took it upon themselves to decide that trainees needed a seat at the table as the foundations of our incredible specialty were laid.
With fewer than 300 members, EMRA started small but tasked itself with a big mission: to serve as the voice of emergency medicine physicians-in-training and the future of our specialty. As an independent organization, we became involved in some of the earliest decisions, from testifying at the American Medical Association to advocating for our specialty’s board certification to voting at ACEP Council to contributing to the Model of Clinical Practice of Emergency Medicine.
“Never before have residents and students been so proactive or become so involved in shaping a specialty.” —Kristin Harkin, MD, FACEP, EMRA past President
While those words were written 20 years ago, they ring even louder today. With EMRA’s nationwide Representative Council, Medical Student Council, 14-member Board of Directors, seven full-time staff members, and 20 committees—all of whom serve EMRA’s 15,625 medical student, resident, fellow, and alumni members—the innovation, agility, and commitment to the future of EM training have never been stronger.
Tasked with the same mission, focusing on the three pillars of education, leadership, and advocacy, we now have 32 publications, more than 120 funded national leadership positions, and a robust advocacy network to ensure that the voice of EM physicians-in-training is heard any time a decision is made that affects our future. Recent issues where we have weighed in include EMRA’s adamant opposition to the Association of American Medical Colleges’ standardized video interview pilot and our support of protected faculty time in the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education program requirements. For full details of everything we’ve been up to this year, check out the EMRA Fiscal 2019 Year End Report.
“We met … as … EM residents interested in our future, perhaps idealistic in our views, but just as with all EM practitioners at that time, very practical in our approach.” —Robert Wolfensperger, MD, first EMRA President
Over the next 45 years, as health care delivery systems and medical education perpetually evolve, EMRA will continue to be on the leading edge of change, just as our founders were in 1974—with one constant: Our members will continue to be the priority. Thank you for being the most important part of EMRA.
Not part of our alumni network and want to support the future of emergency medicine? Become an EMRA alumni member at www.emra.org/alumni.
Dr. Hughes is EMRA President-Elect and an emergency medicine resident at the University of Cincinnati in Ohio.
Dr. Maniya is EMRA President and an emergency medicine resident at the Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City.
Dr. Jarou is EMRA immediate past President and a clinical associate and administration fellow in emergency medicine at the University of Chicago.