Building the Team
By Donna Baver Rovito
Editor, Physician Family
The physicians we live with all have something HUGE in common, a single profession which unites them, all dedicated to taking the best possible care of their patients.
While they may disagree on how to do that or have wildly different opinions on how to get there, they all agree that the most important thing is taking care of others. It’s why they went into medicine in the first place. And it may even be what attracted many of us to them.
For those of us who love and support, them, though, while we have THEM in common, we don’t have a single interest or profession or skill set. We’re EVERYTHING. Some of us may be physicians ourselves. Others I know are, in no particular order: lawyers in every specialty, accountants, teachers, college professors, nurses, physician assistants, physical therapists, engineers, military veterans and active duty military personnel, artists, actors, singers, musicians, information technology pros, gymnasts, swimmers, pilots, sailors, business owners, political consultants, advocates, chefs, restaurant owners, non-profit executives, psychologists, CEOs, graphic designers, advertising professionals, marketing specialists, marriage, family and personal counselors, researchers, TV producers, lab technicians and supervisors, health care administrators, realtors, real estate developers and appraisers, hair and beauty professionals, wedding and event planners, pharmacists, sales representatives, radio and television personalities, fitness instructors, stock brokers, personal trainers, nutritionists, photographers, legislative staffers, veterinarians, travel consultants, fashion and retail specialists, crafters, tailors, pastry chefs, bankers, financial planners, web designers, human resources professionals, law enforcement officials (I even know of a former Secret Service agent!), state and federal legislators (including members of Congress!), architects, social media specialists, jewelers and jewelry designers, office managers, insurance brokers and experts, medical billing specialists, all kinds of allied health professionals, stay at home moms and dads…and a whole bunch of other things I probably forgot. Heck, I even know a physician spouse who is a professional ventriloquist! (Isn’t Jemimah adorable? Ventriloquist Lisa Laird is pretty cute, too.)
With around 900,000 physicians in the US, I think it’s reasonable to assume that there’s someone within the family of medicine who does pretty much EVERYTHING – and that’s what makes physician families so interesting and exciting! It also, when we’re working together toward any goal, makes us a formidable resource.
There’s another group I’ve had the pleasure of cultivating throughout the journey of helping to create and editing Physician Family. I have been amazed at how many writers, editors, reporters, novelists, bloggers and other publishing experts I’ve encountered along the way – and the vast majority of them have been part of physician families, bringing not only their talent and professional skills to Physician Family, but also their unique perspective as a part of the very group we seek to serve and enlighten.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every writer who has lent his or her talent to Physician Family magazine and the blog since our first issue in Summer 2014 – and to invite all of them to continue to submit ideas and articles for future issues and blogs!
We love publishing follow-ups from previous writers about the various stages in their personal Journey of Medicine. Plus, we are always on the lookout for new writers and new topics. So please keep those great ideas coming and don’t be shy about letting us know you’re interested!
Upcoming issues of Physician Family will feature informative themes of interest to physician families at all stages of the Journey of Medicine:
Summer 2017 – Stress and Burnout
Fall 2017 – Making a Difference
Winter 2018 – Medical Marriage
Spring 2018 – Mentorship
If you have something to contribute about any of these topics, please let us know. And, of course, the weekly blog covers many more topics.
You don’t need to be a professional writer to write for Physician Family. We welcome many points of view and topics, so if you have something you’d like to share and you’re not comfortable with your ability to express yourself – well, that’s why we have editors! Any reader is welcome to submit an idea or a blog or article and we’ll be happy to work with you to bring it to “life.” Just reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org any time!
As Physician Family enters its fourth year, we believe we have barely scratched the surface of its potential. While our social media presence is robust, there are many more individuals and organizations within the family of medicine who can benefit from exposure to Physician Family’s articles, blogs and resources. In coming months and years, it will be our task to connect with these individuals and groups.
So, now, I’m finally getting to the primary point of this blog….
In order to facilitate growth and meet the needs of our growing readership, Physician Family is in the process of growing the team which creates it. New topic editors have been added, a group of talented people will edit the weekly blog, a private Facebook group is being created for editors, writers and team members to facilitate effective communication and members of physician families with a variety of skill sets are being sought to join the Physician Family team.
In the coming months, we hope to build connections with medical societies and associations, medical and surgical specialty societies, medical schools and residency programs, hospital systems and other health-related organizations, as well as physician family members scattered through Cyberspace, allowing us to provide resources to more physicians and their families.
We’re looking for additional people to do social media. It takes a lot of time to engage in all of the online communities which can benefit from what Physician Family has to offer. Some of that connection-building will consist of not-all-that-glamorous tasks like building lists, doing online research to find the best contact people and providing outreach to interested groups. For example, wouldn’t it be awesome to bring issues of Physician Family to your local medical school and let students and their partners know about this amazing resource? Or to a residency program? I think you can see where we’re going here.
Do you have a little time on your hands and skills you’d be willing to volunteer (keeping in mind that we’re not-for-profit) to help Physician Family grow and reach more people? If so, we’d love to hear from you!
It’s easy – just email me at email@example.com and put “Physician Family Team” in the subject line – and we’ll talk.
I look forward to hearing from YOU!
Donna Baver Rovito is the editor of Physician Family, which is published by the AMA Alliance. Active in Alliance activities at the local, state and national level for two decades, Donna is also the mom of two college-age sons, spouse of a general and bariatric surgeon, writer of op-eds on various topics that sometimes annoy people, 21 year breast cancer survivor, advocate for quality health care and science fiction geek who has written, but not published, an original Star Trek novel.