President's Message

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Joshua Sebranek, MD
WSA President
 


President's Message

The Wisconsin Society of Anesthesiologists is an almost 900-member organization working on behalf of the majority of Wisconsin’s physician anesthesiologists.  We have an active and engaged leadership team; a solid presence at the state capitol thanks to our contract lobbyist Eric Jensen with Jensen Government Relations, LLC and strong support from our Executive Director, Marie Marinello with Svinicki Association Management, Inc.  Our annual operating budget is nearly $300,000 and, thanks to years of strong leadership, we have robust financial reserves. 

Every individual sitting on the WSA Board of Directors understands the importance of thoughtfully representing you, a dues-paying member of our organization.  Thanks to recently conducted membership surveys, we know that you expect the WSA to prioritize both education and advocacy.  We have designed three- and five-year organizational strategic plans that clearly emphasize both. 

The WSA Annual Meeting is the cornerstone of our efforts to provide educational opportunities for our members.  Held every year in September, this meeting hosts roughly 150 attendees and consists of lectures and workshops presented by renowned regional and national figures in the field of anesthesiology.  It is also an opportunity for attendees to earn valuable, free CME credits.  Twice a year the WSA publishes a newsletter designed to update our membership on our organizational activities.  The newsletter is also filled with useful information on state and national issues relevant to the practice of anesthesiology. 

 We understand that today’s residents are the key to the future of both our organization and our specialty.  The WSA is actively involved in educating anesthesiology residents.  Our Bylaws allow two, non-voting residents to sit as members on our Board of Directors, one from each of the state’s two teaching institutions.  We actively engage in outreach efforts that include dinners designed to educate residents about current legislative initiatives and encourage active participation in our advocacy endeavors.  Every year the WSA sponsors resident attendees at the ASA’s Legislative Conference and the ASA’s Practice Management Conference.  We also encourage resident attendance and participation at our annual meeting.  “The Best of the Midwest Anesthesiology Resident’s Conference” is an annual session that allows awarded residents the opportunity to present in front of our audience.

In recent years the WSA has also worked to educate patients.  Under our past-President, Dr. Campise-Luther, we created an informational video highlighting the perioperative role of physician anesthesiologists.  The video is located on our website www.thewsa.org and it can also be found on YouTube.  We are currently working to create promotional materials that explain the role of anesthesiology assistants (AA) here in the state of Wisconsin.  We hope to distribute this information to patients and to physician anesthesiologists who might be interested in hiring AA’s as part of their group practice.

As previously mentioned, advocacy is another high-priority item you have identified as an important benefit of WSA membership.  Here in Madison, and throughout the state, the WSA has worked tirelessly to develop relationships with influential legislators.  Your WSA Board of Directors are constantly engaging legislators to advocate on your behalf.  We have attended legislative fundraisers, have had one-on-one conversations, and have been part of several, larger engagement activities.  Along with other Wisconsin medical sub-specialty groups, we have worked to organize an annual “Doctor’s Day” event at the state capitol.  This event brings together several hundred physicians (and resident physicians), all wearing white coats, in the halls of the capitol building.  Attendees learn about active, state legislative issues and have an opportunity to meet with legislators and staff. 

The WSA is an active participant in national advocacy on behalf of our members and our patients.  With the help of the ASA’s leadership your WSA Board of Directors work to engage our congressmen in Washington, D.C.  These advocacy efforts culminate each year with the ASA Legislative Conference.  Members of the WSA’s delegation spend a day meeting with our representatives from both houses of Congress.  During these meetings we educate congressmen about our role as physician anesthesiologists and highlight our thoughts about legislative initiatives important to our members and patients.

Over the years, the WSA has grown into an active, financially sound organization.  We have a clear strategic plan that emphasizes education and advocacy.  As WSA President I will work to strengthen our organization and continue this legacy. 

Please feel free to contact myself or any member of our Board of Directors should you have any questions (or should you wish to become more involved!).  I look forward to meeting you.