Submitted by: ASMBS State and Local Chapters Committee
The ASMBS State and Local Chapters Committee is led by Chair Rachel Moore, MD, and Co-Chairs
Carl Pesta, DO, and Teresa LaMasters, MD. Each ASMBS member is represented by a state chapter, with some areas joined into regions. The prime directive of the committee is to support the chapters and troubleshoot any problems that arise. The chapters are as different from each other as the states are, and thus their activities and obstacles vary.
The ASMBS Access to Care Committee and the State and Local Chapters Committee sometimes hold combined meetings when the state chapters are working on obesity treatment access issues. There is also collaboration with the ASMBS Insurance Committee
on state insurance matters.
Institutional memory about state chapter fundamentals is shared annually at the State Chapter Presidentís Summit during ASMBS Weekend. This is an important event, because the chapter leaders change every one to two years, depending on individual state chapter bylaws. During ASMBS Weekend in San Diego the distinguished speakers included Dr. Stacy Brethauer, Dr. Matt Brengman, Dr. Rachel Moore, Dr. Neil Floch, Dr. Teresa LaMasters,
Dr. Wayne English, Dr. Carl Pesta, Dr. John Scott, Dr. John Morton, Allied Health President Karen Flanders, and Dr. Matt Hutter. Chapter Presidents please mark your calendars for the sixth annual State Chapter Presidentís Summit at ASMBS Weekend June 14-16, 2018 in NYC.
The State Chapter Rally at ObesityWeek 2017 was one of the highlights of the week. Costumes including cheese heads, pilgrim hats, Mardi Gras masks, cowboy hats, Statue of Liberty crowns and many others gave us a fun way to identify which states were represented. Maine Governor LaPage and his wife gave testimony about their experience as bariatric surgery patients of ASMBS member surgeon Dr. Jamie Loggins. New England (#1), Wisconsin (#2) and Connecticut (#3) were recognized for the highest percentage of members who voted in the Executive Council election. Lastly, each chapterís accomplishments for the year were shown to the group in a slide presentation.
In order to become a state chapter member, you must be a member of national ASMBS. There are substantial benefits to state chapter membership including camaraderie, advice about or even referral/transfer of difficult cases, education and exchange of ideas, improved organization to lobby for access to obesity treatment in your area, and opportunities for service projects like the Walk from Obesity. Some of the more established chapters have hosted such high-quality CME meetings that they draw attendees from surrounding states. Members who began as leaders at the state level have risen to leadership positions in other committees and the ASMBS Executive Council.
If you have not yet done so, pay dues and join your state chapter to maximize your ASMBS membership and further impact patient care in your community.