#FIX19 and #WIMsummit Recap

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In the past month, I attended FemInEM’s #FIX19 in New York City and the Women in Medicine Summit in Chicago. Both events were powerful reminders of the importance of equity and inclusion, each calling for bravery and bold action. If you put two conferences on your personal development calendar next year, make it these two. The talks given by colleagues were inspiring and the connections made were refreshing. It is a powerful experience to gather with and learn from colleagues from all around the world. 

There were somber conversations, as well. Among them was the fact that women in medicine are 240-400% more likely to commit suicide than women in any other profession. It will take hard discussions and concerted efforts to change these difficult statistics, but these two conferences have made me confident that together, we can enact true and lasting change. The voices, passion, and leadership present at both #FIX19 and #WIMsummit will change medicine as we know it. 

One particularly powerful panel discussion at WIM was “Leading In: Discovering Your Legacy and Becoming a Woman of Impact”, a conversation led by Dr. Vineet Arora, Christine Malcolm, and Dr. Karen Remley. In the panel, it was discussed that women make up 80% of healthcare professionals of all types. Yet only 6% of department chairs and 9% of chiefs are women. The panelists encouraged us to consider what it means to be a woman of impact, and how we can change the face of leadership in our profession. 

These gatherings were an incredible opportunity to think about what the future holds for women in medicine, what we hope our legacy to be, and how we can work together to build a more equitable, safe, and healthy environment for everyone who dedicates their lives to medicine. There is a new way to build a career in medicine and it is one of equity, empowerment, and camaraderie. 

Tracy Sanson