Common Sense

Common Sense is a bi-monthly member magazine that reports on all AAEM activities and news from the world of emergency medicine. It is delivered to the AAEM membership* six times a year, which currently stands at over 8,000 emergency physicians, residents, and others with an interest in emergency medicine. * International members receive an online subscription only.

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Current Issue: January/February 2023

AAEM Common Sense Electronic Issue Only
AAEM Advertising Opportunities

President's Message

  January/February 2023


Author: Jonathan S. Jones, MD FAAEM

There are many words to describe how I felt. Burned out, depressed, dejected, angry, morally injured, quiet quitter, or perhaps just joyless. How did I go from having a wonderful day, enjoying my family and thinking about all the well wishes I had received, to thinking that my professional life was miserable? Was it simply that I had to work a holiday or was there something more?

  November/December 2022

An Academy, If You Can Keep It

Author: Jonathan S. Jones, MD FAAEM

Is emergency medicine in a crisis? Probably. But it also seems to me that most everything is in crisis now. War in Ukraine, nuclear weapons in Iran and North Korea, inflation, global warming, partisanship, and the fact that one day recently the school lunch was supposed to be pancakes, but they did tacos instead. For some reason, my daughter most definitely does not like tacos. I don’t add the last remark to belittle the preceding issues, but rather to suggest that a crisis is subjective.

From the Editor's Desk

  January/February 2023

The Greatest Act of Forgiveness Which I Have Ever Witnessed

Author: Andrew Mayer, MD FAAEM

I realized that despite the senseless violence which had occurred and the devastating impact it would have on this young family, that there was still goodness and kindness in this world. Frankly, it humbled me and made me feel ashamed for my anger.

  November/December 2022

The Agency Trap

Author: Andrew Mayer, MD FAAEM

Unless your hospital is extremely unusual, you have been dealing with the wave after wave of agency nurses coming through your emergency department and the rest of your hospital. Nurses are desperately needed everywhere and they seem to have disappeared. The bidding war of incentive pay, sign on bonuses, and other means of attracting nurses to our hospitals has reached insane levels and yet has not produced the number of nurses needed to staff our hospitals. Many hospitals have closed beds due to understaffing and surgeries are delayed. The level of patient boarding in emergency departments is untenable. Every hospital administrator is frantically trying to scour the Earth trying to find any available nurse. Nursing shortages are not new but it seems Covid has pushed us over the brink to a new and unsustainable level.

Dollars & Sense

  July/August 2020

Disability and Life...Another Option!

Author: Mark Borden, MD FAAEM

Young doctors are the ripest of "low hanging fruit" for insurance sales agents. You will have, early in your training, friendly, affectionate, insurance sales people tracking you like a pack of slobbering hounds.

  May/June 2019

Three Questions

Author: Joel M. Schofer, MD MBA CPE FAAEM

As I progress in my career, I find myself getting busier and busier. Some of it is my own doing...

Featured Articles

  January/February 2023

Your Voice Matters: 10 Ways to Battle Online Trolls

Author: Matthew Zuckerman, MD FAAEM, Social Media Committee Chair

As physicians, we frequently find ourselves advocating for our patients and our colleagues on social media. This can include messages about public health, vaccination, corporate practice of medicine, overdose, and the health impacts of racism. Increasingly, we are confronted with social media trolls who seem filled with hate as they seek to silence our voice. It’s important to remember that their goal is to distract from your message and intimidate you. This article will include important tips for combatting twitter trolls and getting your message out.

  November/December 2022

Addressing Psychiatric Boarding within the Emergency Department

Author: Aislinn D. Black, DO MPH FACEP, Brian Kenny, DO MA, and Akiva Dym, MD FAAEM

As emergency department visits in the United States continue to increase year over year, overcrowding and understaffing within emergency departments has become a growing concern and unfortunately the “new normal.” Few EDs within the country have been immune from the troubling phenomenon of overcrowding and understaffing.

AAEM Member Bulletin

Additional Articles


View articles from the Resident and Student Association


View articles from the Young Physicians Section

  AAEM Committees

View articles from AAEM Committees

Past Issues

AAEM Letters to the Editor

As the editor of AAEM's bi-monthly newsletter Common Sense, Dr. Mayer welcomes your comments and suggestions. You can easily reach Dr. Mayer by submitting letters to the editor using the online form.

AAEM Article Series

The Master of AAEM Series

  • Achieving Great Outcomes in Your Discharged ED Patients - Tom Scaletta, MD MAAEM FAAEM
  • AAEM: Now More Than Ever! - Larry Weiss, MD JD MAAEM FAAEM
  • Welcome to the Tribe: Thoughts on Starting Out in EM - Joe Lex, MD MAAEM FAAEM
  • Where Would EM be Without AAEM? - Robert McNamara, MD MAAEM FAAEM

Medical Liability - State by State

  • Part 1: Alabama-Florida
  • Part 2: Georgia-Maine
  • Part 3: Maryland-North Dakota
  • Part 4: Ohio-Rhode Island
  • Part 5: South Carolina-Wyoming
  • The Final Summary

Cracking the Code: Fixing the Crowded Emergency Department

  • Part 1: Building the Burning Platform
  • Part 2: Creating the Analytic Model
  • Part 3: Implementing the Solution


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