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Committed to Community & Well-being

Posted By Michael F. Hamant, Wednesday, April 25, 2018

I am pleased to announce the launch of the first digital magazine of the Arizona Medical Association (ArMA), The Arizona Pulse. I serve on the Advisory Council that strategized to establish the publication, and I am proud to serve as supervising editor for our first edition, dedicated to aspects of Physician Leadership.  


The inaugural edition of The Arizona Pulse features insights from physician leaders in Arizona, including Leigh Nuemayer, MD, MS, Interim Senior VP of Health Sciences at The University of Arizona (UA); Marc Leib, MD, JD, Chair of ArMA’s Committee on Legislative & Governmental Affairs; Ken Iserson, MD, MBA and Professor Emeritus at the UA Department of Emergency Medicine; and Dr. Woodrow Myers, Jr., CMO and Health Strategist at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona. Dr. Paul DeChant, who spoke at our March 24 Physician Leadership Conference on Physician Engagement & Wellness, has contributed to our new publication, building on the conversation started at the conference.  


We have had interest and engagement from the physician community as we worked to establish this new publication for and by physicians, and I think you will be pleased with the results. The publication launches on Monday, April 2 – check The Arizona Pulse out at, and stay tuned for further updates.   


The 2018 ArMA Physician Leadership Conference held at Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale on March 24, “Physician Engagement & Wellness” was a success. We had about 80 attendees, and great audience engagement in a topic that hits close to home for all of us. Most of our attendees stayed for the networking lunch and had the opportunity to meet and connect with other members in similar practice settings and career stages.  


The conference featured speakers Suja Mathews, MD, Chair of Medicine at Cook County Health and Hospitals System, and Governor of the Illinois Northern Chapter of the American College of Physicians (ACP); Lois Krahn, MD, Professor of Psychiatry in the Mayo Clinic with joint appointments in the Section of Sleep Medicine, Division of Pulmonary Medicine, Department of Medicine, and the Department of Psychiatry and Psychology; and Paul DeChant, MD, MBA, Deputy Chief Health Officer with IBM Watson Health.  


Our speakers established a background of “how we got here” with the abysmal rates of physician satisfaction, and the cultural and psychological factors at play in the phenomenon of physician burnout. Dr. Paul DeChant walked us through how systems can use LEAN to address the drivers of physician burnout, and with panelists Marjorie Bessel, MD, VP and Chief Clinical Officer at Banner Health, and Kote Chundu, MD, MMM, President and CEO, District Medical Group, held a discussion with our attendees on what is happening currently in health systems to change the working environment to address and reduce burnout.   


Our take away is that a shift is taking place in the conversation about the physician burnout crisis. Focus is no longer on physicians solely being in charge of their own well-being, but on what systems need to do to make environmental changes to support well-being. 


want to applaud my colleague and ArMA’s immediate past president, Dr. Gretchen Alexander, on her dedication to planning an event that provided tools and continued a much-needed community conversation.  


I have said it before and will say it again - I have always found that organized medicine offers us a built-in professional support community. Let’s build on that together! 


In an era of medicine where physician well-being has become a foremost concern, organized medicine continues to be a natural fit for developing the community and capacity to counter physician isolation and help physicians develop tools and community to feel more empowered. I encourage you to take advantage of ArMA’s online community forums for various stages in professional careers and practice types. Sign in today at (your username is your ArMA member ID and your pre-set password is Password1). Click on to locate the practice forum community of interest to you.  




Michael Hamant, MD 

President, ArMA 

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