Professional societies provide a host of benefits for anesthesiologists and other healthcare professionals. Societies give healthcare professionals a significant competitive advantage over their peers by providing opportunities for personal and professional growth. One of the most notable perks of joining a professional society is the opportunity for networking with other doctors, nurses, and healthcare managers. When an anesthesiologist partakes as an active member of an extensive society network, they are able to collaborate and expand their knowledge by interacting with other like-minded and innovative individuals. Immersion into the culture of a professional society keeps members up to date with the latest discoveries and opportunities in their field, including the latest in healthcare management and anesthesia services.
Another benefit of joining a professional society is the opportunity for continued education and mentoring. Professionals can stay informed about new breakthroughs by accessing the society’s seminars, journals, studies, and continued medical education courses.1 Many professional societies offer certification courses to their members, allowing them to expand their educational credentials. Mentoring services are also an invaluable resource to healthcare providers. Mentors can provide support for developing professionals by focusing on any areas that may be lacking. Both parties in a mentoring relationship serve to benefit as many find mentoring to be a rewarding experience that renews their enthusiasm for the medical field and their desire to help others. The intrinsic value of being invested in one’s profession leads to unparalleled opportunities for growth. By showing such dedication to the field, healthcare professionals demonstrate that medicine is not only a job, but a lifestyle. When professionals exude a strong enthusiasm and commitment to excellent healthcare, they create a magnet for colleagues and patients who will come to view them as an industry leader. As a result, healthcare practitioners can feel more satisfied and confident in their role, allowing them to approach their practice with a more positive energy.
Lastly, professional societies provide various forms of monetary support. These supports may include discounts to certification programs and conferences, access to scholarships and grants; and may sometimes even include group rates on medical insurance.2 Professional societies also give monetary backing to support legislation that may benefit their members. The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) advocates for “fair payment and lessened administrative burden by leading discussions about proposed and final rules from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to ensure that the interests of ASA members and their patients are represented,” allowing members an opportunity to make their voices heard.3 Professional Societies also protect their members by defending them against regulation changes and company acquisitions that may be costly to individual healthcare providers, including doctors, nurses, and anesthesiologists. The American Medical Association (AMA) reported in 2017 that “blocking the proposed Anthem-Cigna merger alone saved physicians at least $500 million in payments annually.”4
Joining a professional society has many advantages. These advantages include opportunities for networking, furthering education, renewing passion for the practice, receiving and giving individualized mentorship, and monetary and legal support. The many benefits afforded to a healthcare professional by joining a professional society are more than likely to outweigh the cost of membership, making it an overall worthwhile investment.
- eCareers, Health. “4 Benefits of Joining Your Professional Healthcare Association.” Health ECareers, 9 Feb. 2018, www.healthecareers.com/article/career/the-benefits-of-joining-your-professional-healthcare-association.
- “6 Ways Professional Healthcare Associations Advance Your Career.” Top Personality Traits for Physical Therapists, www.jobs.net/Article/CB-4-Talent-Network-Healthcare-6-Ways-Professional-Healthcare-Associations-Advance-Your-Career.
- “Member Benefit” American Society of Anesthesiologists, asahq.org/member-center/member-benefit.
- “2017 AMA Annual Report.” American Medical Association, 2017, www.ama-assn.org/sites/default/files/media-browser/2017-ama-annual-report.pdf