AMSA Alumni Connector
Issue #1 – December 2021
Hello AMSA Alumni!
I’m Kelly Thibert (she/her), AMSA National President 2016-2017, and now proud to be serving as AMSA Foundation Board Chair alongside many past and present AMSA National leaders you may know.
AMSA holds a special place in our hearts and we are excited to share our first AMSA Alumni Connector and invite you to explore current AMSA happenings and reconnect with your AMSA family.
It may have been a while since you’ve thought of your medical school days and times with AMSA. I’m delighted to share that AMSA and the AMSA Foundation are alive and kicking! Just in the last few weeks, AMSA:
- Sent a letter to Congress and a call to action to members urging robust support for President Biden’s Build Back Better budget package and swift passage to bring meaningful relief to patients and families across the country. Read more here and here.
- Rolled out the new AMSA After Hours Speaker Series! Our first guest, U.S. Surgeon General Vivek Murthy, got candid and urged us to take risks. Our second guest, Dr. Don Berwick, eloquently connected the moral determinants of health and the climate crisis we face with a compelling call to unite in action. Watch our first two speakers and sign up for future sessions here, including tonight’s, past president Dr. Kevin Fickenscher!
- Partnered to bring attention to the new documentary film “The First Wave,” which brings a firsthand view of the impact of COVID-19 on our colleagues and communities in NYC during the first terrifying months of the pandemic, overlaid with rising calls for racial justice around the nation following the murder of George Floyd. See the trailer here.
The trauma this pandemic has caused for our patients, colleagues, and families–not to mention ourselves and our profession–is very real. COVID-19 has brought the reality of health disparities and inequities within our healthcare system to the forefront. Our despicably high and rising maternal mortality rate alongside our continued system of mass incarceration is clear evidence of the systemic oppression and racism in our country and how it plays out in the lives of our patients and communities. Oppression and racism are not new to our nation; they have plagued us since our founding. They contribute to our ranking as the worst healthcare system overall among 11 high income countries, even though we spend more of our GNP on health care.
It’s high time these truths are addressed both inside and outside of the medical community. And, as we look ahead to our looming climate crisis, we know AMSA is needed now more than ever.
AMSA has seen and fostered many changes in medicine and our nation over the years. We know what it takes to make skilled, strong, caring physicians. We know, as Rep. John Lewis urged, when you see something “that’s not right, not fair, not just, you have a moral obligation to do something about it” and to “get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”
The challenges that lie ahead of us must be faced head-on. Our incoming colleagues face a nation divided, much as we were during the late ’60s when we separated from the AMA. Then, we called medical students around the country to unite and lift their voices together in an action as AMSA, and to stand united for a future with equitable, affordable, and accessible health care for all.
Now we call on you to unite again! Help AMSA grow our next generation of physicians. Become an AMSA Advocacy Coach or mentor. Share your expertise with future physicians and connect with alumni through our AMSA Alumni Update & Speakers Interest Form and we’ll be in touch! Sign-up for our new AMSA After Hours Speaker Series. Connect with your AMSA classmates at our upcoming virtual AMSA Alumni & OATs Happy Hour on January 21, and save the date for the AMSA Alumni Reunion at AMSACon 2022 in-person in Washington, D.C., April 9. Sign up for details here.
We invite you to check out our current AMSA Rounds for more news from chapters and members in the U.S. and around the world.
In closing, we ask you to consider making a generous tax-deductible donation to support our education and advocacy programs and help AMSA keep making “good trouble”–please donate here.
In solidarity and action for justice and a health filled future for all,