Message from the CUCM President: We Are Your Voice – Q2 2023

The College of Urgent Care Medicine (CUCM) held our annual member’s meeting during the Urgent Care Association convention in Las Vegas in April. For those who were able to attend, it was a pleasure meeting you in person. Not only did we enjoy a delicious lunch together, but we also had a great panelist discussion on continuing to advance the specialty of Urgent Care medicine. I appreciate your passion, enthusiasm, and dedication for Urgent Care. I left the convention with renewed optimism and confirmation that the College is on the right path. For those who were unable to attend, we will be returning to Las Vegas next year: April 13-17, 2024, and I look forward to seeing you there.

Please join me in welcoming Lisa Bishop, DNP, MHA, FCUCM and Payman Arabzadeh, MD, MBA to the CUCM Board of Directors. Dr. Bishop comes to the board with over 25 years of clinical experience and is the Vice President, Training and Clinical Development at Premier Health based in New Orleans, Louisiana. Dr. Arabzadeh is the CEO and Chief Promise Officer at Davam Urgent Care in Magnolia, Texas and is currently serving as the President of UCA.

I extend a sincere thank you to Joe Toscano, MD, FCUCM and Max Lebow, MD, MPH who have rotated off the board. I cannot express enough gratitude to Dr. Toscano and Dr. Lebow for their guidance and contributions to the board. I look forward to their continued support and contributions.  

Speaking of Dr. Toscano, he is the first recipient of the inaugural Joseph Toscano Inspiring Excellence Award. The College created this award to honor Dr. Toscano for his significant contributions to Urgent Care. In the future, the award will recognize a CUCM member who has made significant and sustained contributions to the industry by inspiring excellence. The College also awarded Tracey Davidoff, MD, FCUCM with the Sean McNeeley, MD, FCUCM Advancing the Specialty Award for her significant and sustained contributions to advancing the specialty of Urgent Care medicine. Dr. Davidoff’s many accomplishments include being the co-editor-in-chief of this publication as well as being newly elected to the UCA Board of Directors. Congratulations to both!

May 11, 2023 marked the end of the federal COVID-19 public health emergency. While the public health emergency may be over, healthcare challenges exposed by the pandemic persist. Patient distrust of public health, staffing shortages, provider burnout, decreased payer reimbursement and financial strain are threats to efficient healthcare delivery. Emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and asynchronous healthcare have the potential to both enhance and disrupt Urgent Care.

In response to the rapidly changing healthcare environment, the College is reviewing our strategic goals.  However, our fundamental purpose will remain the same. We will continue to advance the specialty through the promotion of evidence-based Urgent Care medicine, educating the public about the specialty of Urgent Care, improving collaboration between healthcare providers and centers, and encouraging and supporting research. We are over 4,000 members strong. We are your voice, and we want to hear from you.

Chris Chao, MD, President, College of Urgent Care Medicine Board of Directors