The Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists

The Clinical Practice Committee: SOCCA’s Idea Accelerator

SOCCA is growing! Thanks to the visionary leadership of our president, Dr. Michael Wall, SOCCA has now created what is known as the Clinical Practice Committee (CPC). This committee reports directly to SOCCA’s Board of Directors and has a singular function: enable our growing membership to participate as much as possible in creating the resources and programs of the future.

At the Texas Medical Center, we have an institution known as TMC Innovation, a healthcare accelerator designed to make it easier for the healthcare industry to interact with the hospitals of the Texas Medical Center to facilitate product development of the next generation of healthcare devices and systems. You may have a similar system in your institution as this approach of “translating” ideas from concept to reality is taking form more and more in the medical-industrial complex. The CPC is a way for SOCCA to facilitate a similar function for the practice of Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine.

The CPC is comprised of SOCCA members who wish to become more engaged in our society and have the energy to facilitate that engagement. The process for joining the CPC is short-circuited, so any SOCCA member can send an email and be connected to the CPC within days. Afterward, the member will be asked which area of focus they would like to concentrate on...and they are not limited to only one area of focus. We call the focused groups “workgroups” (for all the by-laws experts out there, we are deliberately not referring to CPC as a “sub-committee”). The areas of focus so far include:

  1. Transplant critical care
  2. Mechanical circulatory support/ECMO/CT critical care
  3. Physiologically difficult airway
  4. Quality and safety
  5. Neuro-critical care
  6. Service chiefs
  7. Obstetric critical care

All the workgroups within the CPC have their own chairs and vice chairs, thus maximizing the opportunity for SOCCA members to gain leadership experience. Each workgroup holds its own monthly meetings to work through projects and ideas effectively. Dr. Demiralp and I have asked for each workgroup to identify two projects or ideas that they would like to focus on to both achieve a measurable work product and keep our goals within reach. Additionally, every quarter, the entire CPC (including all workgroups and members) participates in a larger meeting to discuss the progress that each workgroup has achieved and opportunities for synergy or assistance. This approach allows us to capture the collective expertise of the entire CPC and make sure that one workgroup is not overlapping with another CPC workgroup (or another SOCCA committee).

During the SOCCA board meetings, CPC leadership shares the working results of the CPC workgroups with the board in order to obtain input and support from the board.  This support may take any form needed, from patterning with an existing part of SOCCA leadership to funds allocation to collaborating with outside organizations. In any case, the CPC is clearly designed to facilitate prompt elevation of ideas from concept to execution...SOCCA’s own accelerator!

Examples of some of the early ideas produced within the CPCs include creating enhanced educational offerings at SOCCA’s annual meeting which would allow hands-on experience for attendees. Additionally, early discussions are including the possibility of creating practice-relevant certifications for SOCCA members that add value and avoid unhelpful burdens to completion. All the discussions thus far have included creative and innovative ideas to make SOCCA membership even more valuable and further illustrate the leadership role that Anesthesiology Critical Care Medicine physicians play in the overall field of Critical Care Medicine.

The CPC was officially formed in April 2023 during our annual meeting, so our work is just getting started. We will regularly provide updates to you via SOCCA Interchange and SOCCA’s site to keep you informed of our collective progress. Our team will diligently work with the board to make sure that the work of the CPC is helpful to the rest of the committees and teams within SOCCA. As with any new effort, we can anticipate the need to adjust along the way; SOCCA should know that we embrace the need to incorporate feedback and course correct wherever needed. Our focus is to be helpful to the mission, membership, and, by extension, patients of SOCCA.

The structure and operation of organized medicine is evolving, and SOCCA is positioned to lead this change into the future…and we need your help! If you are interested in participating in one of our exciting CPC workgroups, please email SOCCA Society Director, Ms. Vivian Abalama, IOM, CAE at [email protected]. We look forward to sharing the exciting work that we are starting with SOCCA and await your potential contributions to our team as well!


George Williams, MD, FASA, FCCM, FCCP
Chair, SOCCA Clinical Practice Committee
UT Health Houston, McGovern Medical School
Houston, TX