President's MessageMichael T. Jaklitsch, MD, FACS
It has been my honor to complete the second year of my term as President of the Massachusetts Chapter of the American College of Surgeons (MCACS). I am excited to host this year’s 63rd Annual Meeting that will take place on Saturday, December 3, 2016 at the Westin Copley Place in Boston, Massachusetts.
Dr. Heena Santry, Chair of the Program Committee for the 2016 Annual Meeting, has planned an exceptional educational program. We will present resident research prize awards and the 4th Annual Dr. Joseph E. Murray Resident Research Prize for Basic Science. The annual meeting also includes the 6th annual "Top Gun" competition which will be held on Saturday afternoon. Dr. Robert Driscoll has organized this contest for surgical residents from each of the general surgery residency programs throughout Massachusetts and one from Dartmouth/Hitchcock Medical Center in Lebanon, NH. The competition will consist of teams of three residents from each institution participating in a series of tests where laparoscopic skills such as intracorporeal knot tying, transferring of objects, and pattern cutting will be timed and graded. The winners of the competition will receive the Massachusetts Chapter ACS Cup, a beautiful trophy to showcase at their institution for the year. The Cup has been on display at the UMass Medical Center in Worcester for the past year as their resident team bested nine other teams from around Massachusetts and New Hampshire in 2015, the first time a team from UMass Medical Center has won the trophy! Updates on the meeting can be found on the Mass Chapter’s meeting website.
Dr. Peter Masiakos of Mass General Hospital organized the Chapter’s fourth Advocacy Day, which took place on September 20, 2016. The event was held in the Great Hall of Flags of the Massachusetts State House and there were over 80 participants in the event including members of the Chapter, surgical and trauma professionals, law enforcement officials, legislators and their aides, personnel from the Department of Public Health, a survivor of the Boston Marathon bombings, students and non-medical personnel. The program focused on “The Surgical Experience in Response to Firearm Violence” with a panel moderated by Peter Koutoujian, Sheriff of Middlesex County, with speakers from the State’s Surgical Trauma Centers: Dr. Michael Hirsh of UMass Memorial Hospital, Dr. Eric Goralnick of Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and Dr. David King of Massachusetts General Hospital. Dr. King demonstrated the use of a tourniquet, and the Chapter arranged to have enough combat quality tourniquets available for all members of the legislature. Mr. William Evans, Commissioner of the Boston Police Department, gave a few remarks on the importance of surgeons’ involvement in policy discussion. The Advocacy Day is supported in part by a grant from the American College of Surgeons and we hope you can join us at next year’s event.
My colleagues from the Chapter and I attended the American College of Surgeons Leadership Conference and Advocacy Summit in Washington, DC in April. The Chapter again held a competition to select residents to attend the conference and the winning entry was submitted by Dr. Bethany Strong of Brigham and Women’s Hospital. I am pleased to announce the 6th annual resident competition to attend the 2017 ACS Leadership Conference and Advocacy Summit that will be held May 6 - 9, 2017 at the Renaissance Downtown Hotel in Washington, DC. The MCACS will sponsor a young surgeon to attend the conference and summit. To be considered for the MCACS competition the resident must be in an ACGME-approved Massachusetts surgery residency training program and submit a brief essay on why he/she wants to attend the conference and the role of advocacy in health care. The deadline for submitting an essay is January 3, 2017. For more information, please visit the Resident’s Corner at www.mcacs.org.
Massachusetts is participating in the ACS grassroots advocacy program under the leadership of Dr. Anne Larkin, MCACS President-Elect. The program brings surgeons from each MA congressional district together to meet on an ongoing basis with their Representatives in Congress. Surgeons receive advocacy training and are charged with developing relationships with their elected Representatives to facilitate a dialog about issues of importance to surgeons and surgical patients. I encourage you to get involved by contacting Dr. Larkin about the grassroots advocacy program.
Dr. Marc Rubin, MCACS Past President and ACS Board of Governor, and Dr. Matt Hutter of Massachusetts General Hospital, are continuing their efforts with the Massachusetts Surgical Quality Improvement Collaborative (MaSQIC) which was established to improve the quality of surgical care at the statewide level.
As part of the Chapter’s partnership with the ACS Italy Chapter. Dr. Douglas S. Smink and Dr. Marco Fisichella of Brigham and Women’s Hospital have been invited to attend the ACS Italy Chapter Annual Meeting in Italy. We are pleased to continue the relationship with our colleagues in Italy.
The Chapter offers its members an excellent balance of high quality educational meetings along with an environment in which you can share and exchange ideas with some of the most well-known and respected surgeons in our state and profession. The Chapter is a vibrant organization and has been busy over the past year. Members of the MCACS, their colleagues and their guests attended the 6th annual membership drive at Fenway Park on August 26, 2016 which was a terrific evening of fellowship though the Red Sox lost to the Kansas City Royals! We are also organizing a team, Cut to the Chase, to participate in the Boston Run to Remember half marathon that will take place on May 28, 2017 in the Boston Seaport district. The run is committed to assisting charities support their mission by raising dollars through the race. If you are interested in joining our team, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
I encourage you to invite your colleagues who are not yet members of the Massachusetts Chapter to become members. They can apply online or download a membership application at www.mcacs.org. We welcome members to participate in the Chapter’s activities and serve on its committees. The Council is committed in its efforts to be a resource for young surgeons and improving the educational opportunities we provide for Massachusetts surgeons.
I look forward to seeing you all on December 3, 2016 at our Annual Meeting!
Michael T. Jaklitsch, MD, FACS