July 2020 Newsletter

In This Issue

Letter from the Chair: Defying Gravity 

Loice A. Swisher, MD FAAEM
Chair, WiEM Section

The requirement to author a Letter from the Chair, has been my greatest fear and hurdle of producing a monthly newsletter for the Women in EM Section. Potential topics seemed to change daily. Then I came upon this: Beau Dermott is Amanda Holden's golden girl Video

Please watch before going on. It provides the context for all which follows.

The video opens with quiet, 12-year-old Beau Dermott alone on-stage eye to eye with Simon Cowell.  The raised eyebrows, eye-roll, tilt of the head, and flat “oh wow” put his skepticism in full view.  Amanda Holden in the next seat, turned her head and murmured “It’s a hard song” (emphasis on the hard). The judge beside her nodded in agreement. There is no enthusiasm in Simon’s “good luck” or in his eyes.  

If Beau could feel the lack of confidence from the judges’ table, she didn’t show it.  During the musical intro, she folded her hands.  Her face changed to a determined look. Her eyes seemed to draw strength from a faraway place.  Clearly no one expected what was to come except maybe Beau as she planted her feet on center stage and delivered.  

“Something has changed within me. Something is not the same. I’m through with playing by the rules of someone else’s game.” 

The jaws of the audience dropped. I was transfixed.  

“Too late for second guessing. Too late to go back to sleep. It is time to trust my instincts. Close my eyes and leap. It’s time to try defying gravity.” 

This! This is what we are doing with this section. There is so much talent in this group of individuals. We need to play by new rules in which the paths to the highest levels of leadership and success are visible. We must make opportunities to show up on stage so others can see us. We need to trust our instincts and leap. We need to create a culture of defying gravity. 

It is with great honor that I hold this inaugural position as chair. We have become the largest section of Full Voting members. As a section, we now have many more women in positions of authority creating a chance to lead, to gain new skills, and to be seen. We have a Council of eight (including our AAEM/RSA Representative). We have three standing committees each with a lead and a co-lead. We are trying to encourage speakers with consultation for the speaker development group and educational proposal’s for the Scientific Assembly.   

As the audience of defying gravity leapt to their feet, I didn’t realize that I had yet to see a most important point of the clip.  One little girl in the audience shrieked, thrusting her arm in the air. “Push the golden buzzer! Push the golden buzzer!” Golden paper rained down on Beau.  

It became obvious! We also must advocate and speak out for those who are doing amazing jobs. We need to nominate women for awards and for positions. We need to call for others to ‘Push the golden buzzer.’ 

This is my vision and my promise for the Women in EM Section. No matter who you are — student, faculty, American or International, community or academic, linear or non-linear trajectory, childless or child-full, any gender —if you wish to support women in EM or need support yourself, there is a home here.  

Everyone deserves a chance to fly.  

We can defy gravity! 

(Pronouns - any, name preferred)

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WiEM Working Group Leads, Co-Leads, and Council Liaisons 

Here is the leadership for the three standing working committees: 

  • Education — Molly Estes, MD FAAEM (Lead); Deena Bengiamin, MD FAAEM; Patricia Panakos, MD FAAEM (Council Lead- Communications and Social Media); Danielle Goodrich, MD FAAEM (Scientific Assembly) 

  • Advocacy — Wanda Cruz, DO FAAEM (Lead); Carole Levy, MD MPH FAAEM (Co-Lead); Sara Misthal, MD FAAEM (Council Liaison) 

  • Leadership — Kraftin Schreyer, MD CMQ FAAEM (Lead); Kristyn Smith, DO (Co-Lead); Rupal Jain, MD (Council Liaison) 

The working groups have been formed and a working group listserv is in development this week. Those who indicated interest in membership should receive a listserv email in the next couple of weeks defining the tasks of each group. For those interested in joining a group, another working group membership opportunity will open again in October.  

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 2019-2020 Speaker Development Group 

Congratulations to the women completing the year-long AAEM Speaker Development Group

There were a total of 8 mentees: 6 women and 2 men.

This is an excellent opportunity to develop the skills needed and become known to be a Scientific Assembly Speaker. Note that four of the speakers have online lectures for 26th Annual Scientific Assembly.  

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Women’s Wisdom: Our Journey in Emergency Medicine Podcast — Joanne Williams, MD MAAEM FAAEM 

In this episode, Faith C. Quenzer, DO, emergency medicine research fellow at UC San Diego and past AAEM/RSA At-Large Director, and Adria Ottoboni, MD FAAEM, Associate Professor at Kern Medical UCLA, speak with Joanne Williams, MD MAAEM FAAEM, Associate Professor of Clinical Emergency Medicine at the Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Science, and founding member of AAEM, about her journey in emergency medicine. 

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WiEM Mentoring and Networking Initiative 

Rupal Jain, MD from the WiEM Section Council and Priya Ghelani, DO FAAEM from the YPS Council are leading a mentoring and networking initiative. If you are interested in having a mentor or becoming a mentor please fill out the google form.

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WiEM sponsored Zoom Webinar: Applying to EM Residencies as an IMG 

July 22, 2020 | 8:00pm ET

Join three of our Women in EM members for a zoom discussion on applying to EM residencies as an IMG. Each of our panelists have been active in AAEM. One of our speakers is an author and one of our participating viewers will receive a copy of her book! 


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AMWA Sponsored Zoom: Protecting Physician Mental Health During the COVID Pandemic and Beyond

July 23, 2020 | 8pm ET

Join AMWA and AAEM WiEM Section leaders for an interview of Dr. Mona Masood – Founder of the Physician Support Line. Note the AMWA benefit through the Women in EM Section will allow you to participate in AMWA events such as these for free. The speakers will include: 

Mona Masood, DO
Founder and Chief Organizer
Physician Support Line

Loice Swisher, MD FAAEM
Clinical Associate Professor
Department of Emergency Medicine
Drexel University

Kim Templeton, MD
Professor of Orthopedic Surgery and Health Policy and Management
University of Kansas Medical Center
AMWA Past President

Learn more about Dr. Masood by reading COVID-19: National Psychiatrist-Run Hotline Offers Docs Emotional PPE here 


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Recent Member Publications

AAEM President’s Message - Steadfast in the Midst of Uncertainty

Physician Wellness: Just a Dream without Due Process 
Megan Healy, MD FAAEM; Al’ai Alvarez, MD FAAEM; and Alice Min, MD FAAEM 

Promoting Staff and Patient Safety Through the Creation of an Emergency Department Patient and Visitor Code of Conduct 
Jonathan D. Sonis, MD MHCM; Elizabeth S. Temin, MD; Andrea Blome, MD; and Kraftin E. Schreyer, MD CMQ FAAEM 

The AAEM Critical Care Section: The Greatest Resource You’ve Never Heard Of 
Andrew Phillips, MD MEd FAAEM, Chair and Ashika Jain, MD FAAEM, Immediate Past Chair 

5 Steps to Ensure that You Have a High Quality Ultrasound Program
Alexis Salerno, MD FAAEM 

Women’s Perspectives on Dual-EM Physician Couples
Megan Mandile

The Quest for Better Sleep 
Danielle Goodrich, MD FAAEM — Chair, YPS

Joint Statement Opposing Expanding Graduate Medical Education Funding to Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants 
Haig Aintablian, MDa; Gabriel Stahl, MDb; Gregory Jasani, MDb; Hannah R. Hughes, MD, MBAc; Allison Beaulieu, MDd; Nehal Naik, MDe; Christina Hornack, DOf  

Promoting Social Connection during COVID-19 
Al'ai Alvarez, MD FAAEM; Dr. Aneesha Dhargalkar, MD FAAEM; Carole Levy, MD MPH FAAEM; and Robert Lam, MD FAAEM 

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AAEM WiEM Section Facebook Group

Our Section has a public Facebook group. We know—old school. Most of our newest colleagues are past Twitter and on Instagram. It is currently the best networking forum we have. Please join. It will continue to serve as a bulletin board regarding activities. It is hoped to be more than that. We want it to be a way to stay connected.

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