When we decided to become emergency medicine physicians, what we really did was commit ourselves to a life of learning. Most of us wouldn’t have gotten to where we are now without maintaining the childlike curiosity that made us wonder how cells work, how the heart pumps and whatever other curiosities that led us to the world of medicine.

We draw upon this background of material, obtained from our thirst of knowledge, thousands of times a day, making decisions in complex situations that test our mettle.

How do you maintain an edge to stay up-to-date and perform to the best of your ability as a physician? You need to find a company that cares about education as much as you do.

I was excited to learn that US Acute Care Solutions (USACS) has a host of classes and workshops that serve as resources to allow healthy growth for any EM doctor at any stage of his or her practice. USACS not only facilitates CME with BEA (Business Expense Account) funds that are meant to be used for conferences and educational materials, they offer specialized, targeted education and workshops that fit the special needs of emergency medicine physicians. 

The Scholars Program recognizes that leadership is critical for emergency department success. The curriculum covers a broad range of emergency medicine management topics dealing with personal introspection, team building, conflict resolution and leadership skills.

Many of my colleagues who graduated from the year-long program have gone on to become ED medical directors. They say the Scholars Program gave them useful tools for being able to adapt and overcome the ever-changing ED environment, both clinically and in a leadership capacity. Organization, communication (including listening), insight into strengths and plans for improving weaknesses are just some of the benefits my colleagues received from this program.

Then, there’s Efficiency Academy, which is described as an "investment" in your career. This course, made up of lectures and small groups, helps identify the aspects of workflow that can be refined. The outcome – an action plan you develop to help you succeed, including specific ways to measure your progress.

The Patient Satisfaction Academy is a three-day, eye-opening training academy that places physicians head-to-head with actors, as patients, in simulated encounters. Attendees return home from this Academy with a much higher level of personal satisfaction and a deeper understanding of the role they play in the satisfaction of emergency department patients.

Now that we have an MD or DO after our names and have been in the “trenches,” we understand how important it is to continually update our knowledge and skills. Learning is a life-long process.