the future of medicine is bright 5f62201e81e52

The Future of Medicine is Bright

Las Vegas Plastic Surgery


President’s Message From the Inaugural Address: 

Honor the Past. Work in the Present. Preserve and Protect the Future.

My family and I moved to Las Vegas in 1977. I graduated from Chaparral High, then Brandeis University. When I applied to medical school, I was fortunate in that in 1969, 20 years before my application, a group of concerned citizens and physicians worked to create a medical school.

Here is where the Clark County Medical Society directly impacted my life. 30 years ago, I received the Clark County Medical Society Scholarship.

This Scholarship made it POSSIBLE for me to attend medical school and further my dream of becoming a physician. Thirty years ago, the scholarship was $1,000 — this was a significant amount as tuition then was $5,500. Tuition is now more than FIVE times that number. Unfortunately, our scholarship grants have not changed with the times.

After medical school, it was off to general surgery training, then plastic surgery training. Finally, a fellowship in hand and microsurgery. As I was finishing, colleagues were concerned about Las Vegas. It was 2002, during the malpractice crisis. Ob/Gyn’s were paying over $100,000 for malpractice insurance, and doctors were leaving in droves. The trauma center shut down.

Here again, the CCMS and the NSMA directly impacted my life. Keep Our Doctors In Nevada, (KODIN) was created. Rates stabilized, and doctors came back to Nevada. Patients benefited.

Honor the Past. Work in the Present. Preserve and Protect the Future.

World-class physicians and institutions are thriving in Las Vegas. The Children’s Heart Center of Nevada and the Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health are shining examples.

So, as my first act as President. I did something that I have not done in years. You may have heard the joke, “If you are sick the best place to go is McCarran.” I officially declared that “Joke” DEAD. It is not funny, nor is it accurate. Now, if someone continues to tell it, don’t be offended — it is most likely that the great medical care in Las Vegas has been a well-kept secret for years.

It seems that our city had to withstand the horrific tragedy of 1 October to show to the world what we all knew. Las Vegas has exceptional hospitals, physicians, nurses, support staff, and first responders.

It is still the best time in human history to be a physician. Current treatments and technologies have given us the ability to treat our patients better than ever before.

The challenge to the house of medicine comes from outside. Regulatory and clerical demands, loss of autonomy, the opioid crisis — all contribute. A record number of physicians are retiring, or worse — committing suicide. We must continue to fight for the health of our physician colleagues and our patients, for if not us, who will?

Why do we physicians do the work that we do? Why do we train so hard for so long? What are we really fighting for? We are fighting for the future. The patient with cancer gets one more birthday. The pediatric heart patient gets to run and play. The trauma victim gets to live, start a family, and have a future. The mother with a difficult pregnancy gets to live through it and deliver a new life, actually delivering the future.

Honor the Past. Work in the Present. Preserve and Protect the Future.

We have two, and soon three medical schools. We have expanding Graduate Medical Education programs. Hospitals are expanding. The future of medicine is bright, but it will be influenced for years by what we do right now.

So now. The Ask. My ask is this: One. More. Thing.

One more member. Become a member. Get your partner to become a member. If you are in a group or institution look to USAP, and Children’s Heart Center of Nevada, where all of their physicians are members. Your spouse should also be a member of the Alliance.

One more meeting. Get involved. We want to hear your opinion. The NSMA meeting, where we make policy, is here in Las Vegas this year.

One more contribution. If you are a physician, contributions to MedPAC are crucial to our effectiveness at the legislature.

And, for everyone. Please make donation to the Clark County Medical Society. Please allow us to pay it forward to the future generations, as past generations have done for us. Please allow the house of medicine to remain an ancient and honorable profession. Please let the future of medicine still shine bright for students and residents, and moreover to future generations such as my 3-year-old daughter who would see that the sacred relationship between patient and physician is still paramount.

Honor the Past. Work in the Present. Preserve and Protect the Future 

*This article’s first appearance in The County Line can be found here.

Comments are closed.