Saturday, December 16, 2017

OCMA Blog

OCMA Women Physician Leadership Conference Proves to be Huge Success

Women Physicians Share Insights at Local Conference

Article written by Physicians News Network,
 
www.physiciansnewsnetwork.com/orange_county

Presentations from Women's Conference speakers available at the end of the article

A women’s conference last week offered local female doctors an unprecedented opportunity to learn from each other, and gain critical insight from top women leaders on how to achieve work-life balance, while taking on leadership roles.

The conference, entitled Retreat, Relate, Reform: Women Physicians Leading Change, took place on March 15 at the Promenade Gardens in Costa Mesa. It was organized by the Orange County Medical Association.

Dr. Lisa Thomsen, a Glendora-based family practitioner in private practice and a board member of the Cooperative of American Physicians Inc. (CAP), said the conference exceeded her expectations.

“It was great to see examples of women doing it all,” Thomsen said. “They are very strong leaders.”

Dr. Kelly Traver, an internal medicine physician, medical director for Crossover Health, delivered the keynote address. She focused on the importance of physicians dealing with increasing levels of stress. The goal is to to adapt, in order to successfully continue practicing, and deliver the best care.

There is a constant pressure on physicians to deliver better care at a lower cost, but according to studies, physicians who are simply in a better mood can come up with correct diagnosis three times faster.

While physicians address the harmful effects of stress when treating their patients, they often ignore to take care of themselves, said Traver.

When speaking about new reimbursement models and payment systems, she said “the more complex compensation systems become, the less effective they become”.

Dr. Sharon Levine, president of the California Medical Board, talked about lessons in physician leadership and the importance of cultivating leaders inside the organizations themselves. She discussed creating a culture that motivates people, fosters new ideas and recognizes those who contribute to the organization.

While the older generation of women physicians felt privileged to have a chance to become doctors, to take on leadership roles, and were eager to take on extra work load at the expense of their personal lives, we cannot expect the current generation to do the same, she said.

Dr. Tanya Spirtos, CMA trustee, gave updates on the current state of the ACA implementation and the issues that directly affect physicians, such as the problem with a three-month grace period for people who will be subsidized on the exchange, which can result in physicians not getting reimbursed by the insurance companies when patients default on their monthly payments.

Spirtos said physicians need positive incentives, not penalties, and they have an unprecedented opportunity now to affect how incentives will work as the ACA gets implemented.

Thomsen said she was impressed with the speakers and their take-away messages. She pointed to Levine’s “quiet strength” as exemplary female physician leadership.

As Levine noted, for many women, their appointment to leadership roles is often accidental, but they take on those roles and rise to the challenge.

Thomsen welcomed the views of a presenter who noted that women can become physician leaders by taking small steps and engaging in different organizations throughout their lives. The gained confidence often catapults women to the next stage, and ultimately, into leadership roles.

She said there was one thing in particular that the keynote speaker said that struck a note with her. “Life is really long,” Traver said. “You don’t need to do everything at once.”

Presentations:

"The Healthiest You" - by Kelly Traver, MD

"Lessons in Leadership: The Challenges of Change" - by Sharon, Levine, MD

"Gender Equity, Ensuring a Positive Work Environment & Executive Contracts"                          -By Shannon Jenkins, Esq.

"Health Care Reform Impact on Physicians" - by Tanya Spirtos, MD - For a copy of this presentation, please contact Ashley Buchwald at abuchwald@ocma.org


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