A Note From the President

Published in December Issue             

Colleagues and Friends,

I hope everyone is getting ready for a great holiday season. I know it's a busy time for us as our patients all want their surgery done before year's end, but enjoy the time with your family and friends this year as well.

In the first month as your president, I have spent much of my time on calls with the committee chairs finalizing our plans for the coming year. The energy, enthusiasm and dedication of our committee leadership and committee members continues to amaze me. The tone and content of every conversation has been, "What can we do for our members to make the ASMBS better for them and their practice?" To that end, Dr. Natan Zundel, FASMBS and Dr. Shanu Kothari, FASMBS (Program Committee) are working to revamp our educational program to include more content for community and private practice surgeons, Dr. Helmuth Billy (Insurance Committee) is developing a fantastic toolkit to help our members through Recovery Audit Contractor (RAC) audits, Dr. Bipan Chand, FASMBS (Flexible Endoscopy Committee) is finalizing a bariatric endoscopy curriculum that will be available soon, and Dr. Rami Lutfi (Community/Independent Practice Committee) is working to develop practice management courses and toolkits for our private practice surgeons. As always, our Clinical Issues Committee, led by Dr. Julie Kim and Dr. Ann Rogers, is cranking out position statements, guidelines and white papers that are valuable resources for our membership. There are many more activities going on as well and I'll keep you up to date on them throughout the year.

If you or one of your colleagues wants to get more involved in the ASMBS, we welcome your participation! The committees and leadership should be representative of our membership and we can't move all of these projects forward without your help. Contact the ASMBS office or me directly if you want to get more involved.

I'll put in one final plug this year for the Obesity PAC. Washington D.C. is surely going to be an interesting place over the next year and we are already poised to engage leadership on Capital Hill to make sure our voice is heard. The PAC provides us the opportunity to get face time with decision-makers as the landscape of healthcare changes and we need your support. Currently, only 5% of our members have contributed to the PAC and, with our meeting in D.C. next year, we want to be a powerful voice for our patients when we come to town. Please donate at asmbs.org/obesitypac.

I'm looking forward to a great 2017 and hope you all have a very Happy New Year as well!