It wasn’t so long ago that emergency physicians were often overlooked for appointment to state or national committees and task forces.
Explore This IssueACEP News: Vol 29 – No 08 – August 2010
Now, emergency physicians not only chair many of these committees, they have become a true power and force within the House of Medicine.
To see the best example of this change in organized medicine, look no further than ACEP member Steve Stack.
Steve, at just 38 years old, was re-elected to the American Medical Association Board of Directors for a second term and—perhaps even more impressively—was selected as their Secretary at the meeting in Chicago this past June. (Congratulations, Steve!)
An emergency physician holding a leadership position on the AMA Board is an accomplishment not even dreamt of a decade ago.
There are emergency physicians who are currently president or vice president, have been chosen as president-elect, or are serving as a past president for their state medical societies, as listed in the sidebar to the right of the page.
There are many more emergency physicians who serve on state committees, serve on their state medical societies’ boards, or are members of the state council or houses of delegates. There is more information about advocacy at the state and local level at www.acep.org: Choose the Advocacy tab, then select “State Issues and Resources.”
Emergency physician involvement in any health care leadership position can benefit our colleagues and our patients, and there are many opportunities to serve.
An excellent way for emergency physicians to get involved in organized medicine is to represent their hospital in the AMA’s Organized Medical Staff Section.
Only a small percentage of hospitals are currently represented in that section, and there is room for steady growth.
The Section develops policy and plays an important role in the AMA; significant emergency medicine representation there could have a big impact.
Emergency medicine is a “can do” specialty, appealing to the challenge-lovers, risk-takers, and adrenaline-chasers in medicine.
The challenge now is to lead the way, to take the risk, to create a future in medicine that will serve our patients and our colleagues for generations.