Along with caring for patients, one of the great satisfactions I have experienced during my medical career is the opportunity to conceive, create, operate and ultimately sell a number of medical-related businesses.

Seeing an idea come to life and thrive is much like parenting.  It takes nurturing, fortitude, patience, dedication, teamwork and sacrifice.  But in the end the satisfaction with seeing something you helped spawn take off is something that brings me such joy.  It’s a joy I love to share with others.

One of my goals as president of the King County Medical Society – along with giving physicians a much greater influence in shaping health care – is to create more opportunities for our members to stretch and grow, to find ways to practice their craft to its fullest.  That’s why I am thrilled to be working with our staff to partner with a number of innovation centers to help open new doors for our members to learn, explore, and ultimately launch their own entrepreneurial endeavors if they are so inclined.

For the past few months we have worked closely with Cambia Grove – a unique health care accelerator in downtown Seattle that brings together entrepreneurs with medical professionals to develop new businesses and technologies.  I recently spoke on a panel of providers discussing our perspectives and the opportunities, challenges and barriers for the future of health care.

It was exhilarating to join dozens of physicians, policy makers, entrepreneurs and innovators in exploring new ideas for health care and our collective practices.  You can watch the video here.

Related blog post: The providers perspective on innovation 

As our industry continues to face myriad challenges, participating in new and evolving organizations as a partner or consultant is just one way to wrest some control of our craft back from a system we know continues to undermine and devalue so many of us.

We will be working in the coming months to offer workshops, meet ups and other opportunities to learn more about the many ways to get involved with start up companies in desperate need of our knowledge and expertise.  I hope many of you will at least explore some of these offerings and potentially discover new satisfaction and new opportunities to expand your own opportunities and help shape the future of health care in a most tangible and satisfying way.

For those that don’t have an entrepreneurial itch, I strongly encourage you to get involved in other ways through the numerous new committees we have launched this year.  They include mental health, public health, scholarship and events.  Please reach out to me or our CEO Nancy Belcher to learn more.  These are also great ways to have a far more powerful say and influence on the future of health care and forge a stronger coalition of fellow providers to expand our reach and amplify our voices.  As Nancy discusses in her recap of our activities in Olympia this year, it’s critical we better come together to make sure our voices are heard.

Sincerely,

Teresa Girolami, MD

President/King County Medical Society

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