Chapter news – February 2014

Slide 1

New Jersey Chapter visit to Ireland. From left: Prof. John Hyland, MB, MCh, FACS, Governor, Ireland Chapter of the ACS; Michael Goldfarb, MD, FACS, chapter President; Steven Binenbaum, MD, FACS, chapter member; Fred Weber, MD, FACS, chapter President-Elect and ACS Governor; Louis Ladocsi, MD, FACS, chapter member; Jay Chandler, MD, FACS, chapter member; Michael Spedick, chapter Vice-President; Steven Fletcher, chapter Past-President; Ronald Chamberlain, MD, FACS, chapter member; Prof. Patrick J. Broe, MB, MCh, FRCSI, President of the RCSI; and Prof. Pierce Grace, MB, MCh, FRCS(I).

Slide 2

Connecticut Chapter. Basil Nwaoz, MD, Resident, Stamford Hospital, presenting research on general surgery.

Slide 3

Connecticut Chapter Distinguished Service Award recipient Dr. Crombie.

Slide 4

Connecticut Chapter. Residents compete at the game Operation using the DaVinci Robot in the Connecticut Resident Surgical Skills Competition.

Slide 5

Massachusetts Chapter. 2013 Resident Top Gun Competition.

Slide 6

Northwestern Pennsylvania Chapter. “Malpractice” band members. Front left, Paul Mirone, MD, family medicine, guitar and vocals. Back left, Jeff Larson, CRNP at VAMC, bass and vocals. Center and on table, Mike Marino, lead guitar, is a guitar instructor, but his wife is a UPMC Hamot nurse. David Dexter, MD, FACS, general and trauma surgeon, lead vocals. Right with the sticks, Rob Chandler, DO, family medicine, plays drums and vocals.

Slide 7

Massachusetts Advocacy Day. From left: Drs. Burke, Velmahos, Millham, Nauta, and Peter T. Masiakos, MD, FACS.

Slide 8

Keystone Chapter. Left to right: Matthew C. Indeck, MD, FACS, Chapter President-Elect and Program Chair, and David R. Arbutina, MD, FACS, Immediate Chapter Past-President, with Dr. Ogu, Resident Jeopardy team winner; Dr. Bowyer; Dr. McBride; and Christopher Coppola, MD, FACS, Chapter President.

Slide 9

Left to right: Dr. Kothari and other Wisconsin Surgical Society members—Jon Gould, MD, FACS; Guilherme Campos, MD, FACS; Jacob Greenberg, MD, FACS; and Matthew Goldblatt, MD, FACS—enjoy the networking reception at the annual group’s conference.

Slide 10

Tom DeMeester, MD, FACS (left), professor emeritus, department of surgery, Keck School of Medicine, University of Southern California, Los Angeles; and Shanu Kothari, MD, FACS, President of The Wisconsin Surgical Society. Dr. DeMeester was the Beaumont Lecturer for the annual meeting of The Wisconsin Chapter of the ACS, November 8–9, 2013, at The American Club, Kohler, WI.

2014 Leadership and Advocacy Summit March 29 to April 1

Senior leaders, Governors, chapter officers, surgical residents, and members of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) from across the globe will convene for the 2014 Leadership and Advocacy Summit, March 29 to April 1, at the JW Marriott in Washington, DC.

The Leadership Summit will take place Sunday, March 30, and will focus on the theme of building leadership skills and emotional intelligence. Presenters for the event will include: Bruce Gewertz, MD, FACS, a vascular surgeon at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Los Angeles, CA; Scott Halford, speaker and author on emotional intelligence, critical thinking, leadership, and influence, Complete Intelligence, LLC, Glendale, CO; ACS President Carlos Pellegrini, MD, FACS; and John Rioux, MD, FACS, Chair of the ACS Governors’ Chapter Activities Domestic Workgroup. The event will again feature breakout sessions by state and/or region. A new session at the Leadership Summit will focus on Chapter Success Stories, during which officers of several ACS chapters will share their chapters’ achievements since the 2013 Leadership Summit.

The Advocacy Summit will immediately follow the Leadership Summit, starting Monday, March 31, with a half day devoted to advocacy education specifically designed to accommodate varying levels of experience. On April 1, ACS members will visit Capitol Hill, where they will discuss with their legislators and congressional staff the many issues affecting surgeons and patients. The ultimate goal of the Advocacy Summit is to prepare participants to become long-term advocates for surgical patients.

Registration for the Leadership and Advocacy Summit is available online. For information on the Leadership Summit, contact Donna Tieberg, Division of Member Services, at or 312-202-5361. For details on the Advocacy Summit, contact Sara Morse, Division of Advocacy and Health Policy, at or 202-672-1512.

Massachusetts Chapter celebrates 60th Annual Meeting

The Massachusetts Chapter of the ACS held its 60th Annual Meeting December 7, 2013, at the Westin Copley Place, Boston. A total of 141 individuals attended the meeting, including 75 residents and medical students. Massachusetts Chapter President Terry Buchmiller, MD, FACS, offered opening remarks and welcomed everyone to Boston. The meeting featured a poster session and a resident paper competition. Guest speaker Frank G. Opelka, MD, FACS, Associate Medical Director, ACS Division of Advocacy and Health Policy, spoke on how the Affordable Care Act will affect surgeons. Other presenters included ACS Governor David McAneny, MD, FACS, who spoke on the new ACS grassroots advocacy program, the SurgeonsVoice, and Andrew L. Warshaw, MD, FACS, ACS President-Elect, who gave an update on College advocacy efforts. A panel discussion, Examining the Marathon Bombing Response—Why It Was Different than Other Mass Casualty Events, was presented with an introduction by Lisa A. Patterson, MD, FACS, ACS Committee on Trauma State Provincial Chair. Timothy C. Counihan, MD, FACS, chairman, department of surgery, Berkshire Medical Center, Pittsfield, MA, was the panel moderator. The chapter also held its Annual Business Meeting.

The Massachusetts Chapter recently announced that it has renamed its basic science oral presentation award in memory of Joseph E. Murray, MD, FACS, who was a member of the chapter and had received the Nobel Prize for Medicine in 1990. The chapter was honored to welcome Mrs. Joseph Murray; their daughters, Virginia Murray and Katherine Murray Leisure; and Dr. Murray’s assistant, Nancy Erlichman, as guests of the chapter. Francis D. Moore, Jr., MD, FACS, a general surgeon at Brigham and Woman’s Hospital, Boston, was the luncheon speaker and gave a presentation titled Joseph Murray, The Man.

Another highlight of the meeting was the Third Annual Resident Top Gun Competition, in which teams of three general surgery residents from each of the 10 training programs in Massachusetts demonstrated their laparoscopic skills, such as extracorporeal knot tying, transferring of objects from one hand to another, and pattern cutting. The winner of the competition was the team from Lahey Clinic, Burlington, comprising Megan Applewhite, MD; Andrew Gagnon, MD; and Victor Kim, MD. The team received the Massachusetts Chapter of the ACS Cup to showcase at their institution for the upcoming year.

The chapter looks forward to its 61st Annual Meeting, December 6, 2014, at the University of Massachusetts Medical School Albert Sherman Center in Worcester. To view the complete program and highlights from the 2013 meeting, go to

Boston Marathon bombing the focus of recent Massachusetts Advocacy Day

Surgeons, their colleagues, and staff participated in a November 19, 2013, Advocacy Day at the Statehouse event sponsored by the Massachusetts Chapter of the ACS. Approximately 100 participants gathered in the Great Hall of Flags at the Massachusetts State House, including 60 members of the Massachusetts Chapter, various trauma center professionals, legislators, and legislative aides. The schedule of activities for Advocacy Day focused on The Surgical Experience and Impressions of the Marathon Bombing on April 15. A panel discussion took place, featuring the following: Frederick Heaton Millham, MD, FACS, a general surgeon at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, Waban, and chairman of the State Trauma Committee; George Velmahos, MD, FACS, chief of trauma surgery at Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston; Peter Burke, MD, FACS, chief of trauma services, Boston Medical Center; and Russell Nauta, MD, FACS, a general and critical care surgeon at Mount Auburn Hospital, Cambridge. Steven Baddour, a partner in the law firm of McDermott Will & Emery LLP, Boston, moderated.

In addition, the second Dr. John Collins Warren Award was presented to Robert DeLeo (D), Speaker of the Massachusetts House of Representatives. Massachusetts Senate President Therese Murray (D) presented citations to representatives of all the state’s trauma centers in recognition of their extraordinary efforts in response to the Marathon bombing.

Finally, attendees met with their legislators and/or their staff and distributed a “white paper” outlining the state of Massachusetts trauma plan. To download the white paper, go to

New Jersey Chapter makes pilgrimage to Dublin, Ireland

In April 2013, eight surgeons from the New Jersey Chapter of the ACS and their spouses made a pilgrimage to Dublin to visit the Royal College of Surgeons of Ireland (RCSI). The group was hosted by Patrick “Paddy” J. Broe, MB, MCh, FRCS(I), president of the RCSI, who gave a tour of Dublin’s Beaumont Hospital. The travelers were treated to a formal lunch at the Royal College’s headquarters and heard three RCSI paper presentations. The evening’s events included a formal dinner in the Royal College’s private dining hall with Fellows of the RCSI and their spouses.

The following morning, one New Jersey Chapter member had the opportunity to experience the Irish Health System firsthand. As four of the New Jersey surgeons made their way to play golf, one suffered an acute myocardial infarction. He was quickly taken to a local hospital, resuscitated, and in a very efficient manner was provided with a coronary stent. The patient made an uneventful recovery and was able to return home in a week’s time.

Later in the trip, the New Jersey touring group visited Northern Ireland and learned about “The Troubles.” All tour attendees returned to the U.S. with wonderful memories, a sense of the practice of medicine and surgery on another continent, and the knowledge that they had created warm friendships and bonds with the surgeons of Ireland. This year, the New Jersey Chapter pilgrimage will be to Sicily, Italy. For more information on this upcoming trip, contact Andrea Donelan at the New Jersey Chapter, or 973-539-4000.

Michigan chapter hosts legislators at meet and greet

After a busy day at the State Capitol in Lansing, the Michigan Chapter of the ACS hosted a meet-and-greet reception with legislators on November 13, 2013. At the reception, chapter officers met with a group of state senators, representatives, and legislative aides to discuss health care-related issues up for action in the current session of the Michigan Legislature. Foremost among the chapter’s goals was to voice strong opposition to the efforts of special interest groups to gut Michigan’s no-fault auto insurance program, which currently protects citizens from dire economic consequences after sustaining catastrophic injury in vehicular accidents. Chapter officers also expressed their unequivocal support for Michigan H.B. 4354, which would shield surgeons and other practitioners who treat emergency room patients from liability lawsuits unless clear and convincing evidence is presented that the provider’s actions constituted gross negligence.

The surgeons also conveyed serious patient safety-related concerns regarding Michigan S.B. 2, which would broadly expand the scope of practice for nurse practitioners. Surgeons and legislators in attendance at this year’s Advocacy Day concurred that it was a mutually beneficial event, one that the Michigan Chapter intends to make an annual occurrence.

Affordable Care Act and electronic health records focus of Keystone Chapter Meeting

The 2013 Annual Scientific Meeting of the ACS Keystone Chapter took place November 8, 2013, at the Henry Hood Center for Health Research at Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, PA. More than 90 attendees participated in the event, which included resident paper and poster competitions. Glenn Steele, Jr., MD, PhD, FACS, president/chief executive officer of Geisinger Health System, gave the keynote address on the Affordable Care Act, while Carol Bishop, associate director of practice economics and payor relations at the Pennsylvania Medical Society, led a discussion on meaningful use of electronic health records.

Mark Bowyer, MD, FACS, professor of surgery; chief, division of trauma and combat surgery; and director of surgical simulation at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, hosted the chapter’s annual Resident Jeopardy Contest. Seven resident teams competed in the contest, with Stanley Ogu, MD, and Nils-Tomas McBride, MD, both representing Easton (PA) Hospital, winning the trophy. Oral and poster abstract winners were Kathryn Jaap, MD, and Ayana Allard-Picou, MD, both from Geisinger Medical Center, taking first and second place, respectively, in the oral competition. Luiz Foernges, MD, of Geisinger Medical Center took first place and Kavita Vakharia, MD, of Hershey Medical Center, took second place in the poster competition.

Connecticut Surgical Quality Collaborative meets in conjunction with chapter

The Connecticut Surgical Quality Collaborative (CtSQC) held its quarterly meeting in conjunction with the 46th Annual and Scientific Meeting of the Connecticut Chapter of the American College of Surgeons Professional Association (CTACSPA) in Farmington. Scott Ellner, DO, FACS, vice-chair of surgery at St. Francis Hospital, Hartford, CT, and co-founder of the CtSQC, gave introductory remarks and explained that the collaborative’s next task is to seek funding from insurance industry partners that benefit from the CtSQC’s work.

Other featured speakers included Robert Brenes, MD, chief resident at Saint Mary’s Hospital, Waterbury, CT, and Philip Corvo, MD, FACS, chairman of surgery at Saint Mary’s and co-founder of the CtSQC. The meeting concluded with remarks from Craig Miller, ACS National Surgical Quality Improvement Program (ACS NSQIP®) Data Manager, concerning newly available collaborative data reports. The CtSQC includes both ACS NSQIP and non-ACS NSQIP institutions and enjoys active participation from 90 percent of the hospitals in Connecticut.

The Annual and Scientific Meeting of the CTACSPA kicked off with a Commission on Cancer session featuring a special presentation by Greer Gay, RN, PhD, Manager, Research Unit, ACS National Cancer Data Base. The program also included a chapter Committee on Trauma meeting, a Senior Surgeons Breakfast, and a Young Surgeons and Residents Breakfast. The meeting’s annual Resident Paper Competition showcased the work of more than 40 residents from programs across the state. Research was presented in the areas of trauma, surgical oncology, general surgery, and specialty surgery. The chapter’s annual James Foster, MD, FACS, Memorial Lecture was presented by Karen Richards, Administrative Director of the ACS Division of Research and Optimal Patient Care, who spoke about the ACS NSQIP.

The lunchtime keynote speaker was Patrick V. Bailey, MD, FACS, Vice-Chair of the American College of Surgeons Professional Association’s political action committee, known as the ACSPA-SurgeonsPAC. Dr. Bailey presented an insightful report on the College’s advocacy efforts in Washington, DC. The afternoon featured sessions on Social Media for Physicians, Navigating Healthcare Exchanges for Surgeons, Coding for Residents, and How to Choose a Fellowship. The day ended with the Connecticut Chapter’s signature event, the Resident Skills Competition, in which residency program participants compete in laparoscopic and robotic surgical skills challenges. The group from Saint Mary’s Hospital was the champion team for 2013. The Connecticut Chapter also presented its Distinguished Service Award to H. David Crombie, MD, FACS, who, after a distinguished career in surgery, went on to a second career as the editor of Connecticut Medicine, the journal of the Connecticut State Medical Society. The Chapter also presented its Legislator of the Year Award to Prasad Srinivasan, MD (R), the only physician currently serving in the Connecticut General Assembly.

Pennsylvania band promotes “health care with attitude”

“Health care with attitude”—that’s the mantra of five-piece rock band Malpractice, featuring David Dexter, MD, FACS, ACS Governor representing the Northwestern Pennsylvania Chapter and a member of the Governors’ Chapter Activities Domestic Workgroup. Dr. Dexter, a general and trauma surgeon, is the lead singer for a versatile rock group that came together in March 2012 as a “basement band” playing rock music from the 1980s through the 2000s. “It was an idea I had with a hospital administrator to replace a [disc jockey] used routinely at the [University of Pittsburgh Medical Center] Hamot Hospital summer picnic. We recruited band members, and off we went,” Dr. Dexter said. Band members rehearsed for 11 months before their first public appearance in front of more than 300 people.

The demand for performances by Malpractice has steadily increased, as has the band’s following. They have played numerous gigs since their inception, including a recent fund-raiser for the Howard Hanna Children’s Free Care Fund and Shriners Hospital. Requests for the band are now flooding in, with bookings in place through the fall of 2014. The band gave a New Year’s Eve performance, sharing the stage with another local band. Another Howard Hanna fund-raiser is on tap for the band for later this year, and a promotional t-shirt is in the works. The group of five, whose members are mostly in the medical field, seem to have “made it” in the local band community, and Dr. Dexter reports they “will do this as long as we continue to have this much fun.”

Information on Malpractice can be found on the band’s Facebook page.

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