Colorado Medical Society

Cover: Redesigned meeting to resonate with physicians in all stages of career

Friday, July 15, 2016 08:40 AM

You should come to the CMS Annual Meeting this September. As chair of the Annual Meeting Re-engineering Work Group, I’m personally inviting you, whether or not you have attended this meeting before. The fun and dedicated physician and medical student members of the work group have worked over the past six months to completely redesign the meeting into a highly energized forum so it resonates with Colorado physicians in all stages of our careers and lives.

This year’s meeting will be relevant and meaningful, representing Colorado culture at its finest. It will be laid back and relaxed, innovative and smart, and – best of all – will fully embrace picturesque Keystone, Colo. Physicians are increasingly being asked to do more, particularly when it comes to payment reform, health care policy and technology. We ask you to take a break; give us a weekend to engage with you on the hottest topics in medicine in a way that leaves you rejuvenated. Colorado culture prizes the journey, not just the destination, and your medical society and peers are here to support you. Join us at the signature gathering of Colorado physicians, the 2016 Colorado Medical Society Annual Meeting.

A big change for 2016
The biggest difference between this year’s meeting and previous years is that it will be the first without a House of Delegates function. Last year’s delegates changed the way CMS will set policy from now to the foreseeable future; in The New CMS, we no longer have to make a year’s worth of policy decisions over one weekend. Colorado physicians didn’t take that responsibility lightly and, as a result, it dominated the annual meeting. Uncoupling governance from the meeting opened up endless possibilities for programming, giving us on the work group the opportunity to thoughtfully consider what Colorado physicians want and need in social events and education.

At the same time, we wanted to be sure we kept the many opportunities to exchange ideas and concerns with fellow members since we have so few occasions to connect face-to-face these days. All structured social activities – Friday’s Exhibitor Reception, Saturday morning’s early riser hike, that evening’s Presidential Gala and Reception, and Sunday’s Breakfast with the Board of Directors – will be great forums to network and converse. Most plenary panel discussions and lectures will employ real-time voting with results shared with the Board of Directors, and small-group breakouts will facilitate meaningful brainstorming in a relaxed setting. For the tech-savvy, we will embrace online interactions through social media.

You spoke, we listened
In early 2016, CMS sent an email survey to all members asking you to rank the importance of certain conference features – things like CME, collegiality, expert speakers and free time to spend with family or friends – as well as programming ideas. We were overwhelmed by your insightful responses and have worked hard to integrate your comments and suggestions where we could while keeping the rest on file for the future.

We have exciting programming with the top experts to bring you a panel discussion on the ins and outs of ColoradoCare/Amendment 69, the single-payer initiative on the ballot in November; a panel discussion on health insurance mega-mergers and network issues; a keynote speech and follow-up sessions on how to be well and stay well; workshops on opioids and dangerous patient encounters; a panel of experts on navigating MACRA, the new physician payment program; and a breakdown of the latest political issues and candidates. And, making the most of your time, many of the programs will offer either CME or COPIC points. See briefs on each program starting on page 12 and the full agenda starting on page 14.

Take a hike – really!
The work group talked at length about why CMS members – who are business owners, professionals, parents, community leaders and innovators – should give up a weekend to come to this conference, and, since it’s held in the mountains, how to incorporate time to enjoy our surroundings. We also wanted to make the event family-friendly for those with children or spouses joining them.

We’re proud to say that there’s something for everyone. The early risers can enjoy a hike or yoga on Saturday morning. Kids of all ages can have fun Saturday biking, paddle boating and crafting at the children’s activity center. Fitness enthusiasts can participate in a 5K walk/run. And anyone can take a gondola ride to the mountain summit for excellent views and photos. Even though our schedule is jam-packed with education and social events, we encourage you to take time to pause and breathe in the fresh mountain air. There’s more emphasis on physician wellness, collegiality and camaraderie than ever before.

Join us!
I was absolutely delighted to be asked by President Mike Volz to chair the Re-engineering the Annual Meeting Work Group. It has been a highlight of the year for me to be more involved in the medical society and to help plan this meeting.

I know there’s so much going on in our lives that it’s often difficult to get away. I’m a big Carly Simon fan and there’s a line in one of her songs that says, “how to turn down the noise in my mind.” I hope that’s what this weekend can be for you – time to hit the pause button, relax and remind yourself why you chose medicine and why it’s the best profession in the world.