This is being written as COVID-19 unfolds in the United States, and I hope you are safe and secure. My submission is actually overdue owing to local involvement in disaster preparedness and response planning, and I know many of you are in similar positions within your institutions. This should serve to remind us, as well as our professional colleagues and administrative partners, of the broad skill sets we bring to the table. These skill sets not only include clinical care but the ability to build teams, make decisions, and effectively communicate.
Our membership numbers continue to slowly increase, and we believe that we have a plan to increase member retention that will be associated with ongoing growth of the society. Volunteerism is strong, and we continue to prioritize opportunities for our members to contribute. The most recent example is SOCCA’s partnership with Anesthesia Toolbox to develop critical care educational content on their collaborative educational platform. This effort, coordinated by Dr. Jason Brainard, will identify needed areas of content and match this content with SOCCA volunteers who will develop this content and then provide editorial oversight. The content is peer reviewed and recognized as such for academic purposes. For those interested in participating in the modified Delphi process to determine topics, content development or editorial efforts, please reach out via the volunteer link (https://socca.org/get-involved/) or send a note to Vivian Abalama (email@example.com). Over the next several years, the plan is to incorporate this into SOCCA’s growing educational content alongside selected Annual Meeting presentations and professional development resources.
The Annual Meeting and Board Review courses promise to be an excellent opportunity to learn and network. This year, more than 300 abstracts were submitted, which is an all-time record. Registrations for the meeting are also ahead of historical rates. SOCCA attendees can claim up to 17.5 CME credit hours toward their ABA MOCA 2.0 Part II requirement for attending the 2020 SOCCA Annual Meeting and SOCCA, IARS, and AUA Aligned Meeting Day (May 15 and 16, 2020 respectively). Of these CME hours, 7 will contribute to the patient safety component. This patient safety CME component will be an ongoing feature of our educational offerings.
Several activities in the research arena are important to know. SOCCA members will receive a survey inquiring about interest and local resources available to support research. Our goal is to develop a research consortium that is able to identify areas of common interest and develop an approach to investigate clinically important questions pertinent to our membership. Other societies are able to foster such work, and we believe that we have the talent and drive to advance this over the next several years. However, in order to be most successful, we need to pool all the interested individuals and programs. Please consider participating in the survey. We recognize the real issue of survey fatigue and aim to only request participation in surveys that provide meaningful information and that will influence SOCCA activities.
Finally, the Communication Committee is working to refine the ways in which we both keep the membership updated and highlight the accomplishments of our members. For example, the Burchardi Award was presented at the SCCM Congress in Orlando to Neal Cohen, MD, MPH, MS, FCCM, School of Medicine Vice Dean and Professor of Clinical Anesthesia at the University of California, San Francisco. The Burchardi award is jointly sponsored by SOCCA and the SCCM Anesthesiology Section and is named after Hilmar Burchardi, MD, a pioneer in critical care medicine. Over the coming months we will develop a unified communication strategy and integrate the SOCCA website, blog, e-mail, and social media outlets. As the society continues to grow both in numbers and activity, we look forward to sharing these exciting developments with our members.
Be well, and I hope to see you in San Francisco.