The Virginia Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons (VSEPS) is wrapping up two particularly important years. We've worked through challenges in scope of practice affecting our profession while still trying to focus on patient-centered medicine, as many practices continuously evolved best practices through different phases of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Covid reminded us that our very practices could live or die by legislation and/or executive order. We need our voices heard in the capitals, here in Richmond and in Washington D.C. Your patients need your highest engagement. Patient safety is under continuous assault in state houses nationwide, including here in Virginia.
We must remain vigilant. Non-surgeons performing surgery is dangerous. With so many great medical advances on the horizon: artificial intelligence, innovative technology, and treatments, comes much promise and responsibility. Physicians need seats at the table to ensure these advancements are used ethically, safely and in patients’ best interests.
Working with AAO, our board, and ophthalmologists throughout Virginia last year, I was most impressed by the opportunity VSEPS has to come together. In numerous conversations throughout this process – I realized how aligned the physicians of our state are on so many critical issues and harnessing this alignment into a unified voice is our greatest potential strength.
VSEPS is the only group representing Virginia ophthalmologists and must be our organized voice for the benefit of our patients and practices. We have successfully lobbied against numerous regulations and legislation detrimental to safe patient care. In the era of corporate and legislative medicine, advocacy is the physician’s single most important professional activity other than direct patient care. Now, more than ever, you need to be a member of YOUR state society.
What can you do? If you are not a member, join VSEPS today! Recruit and educate your colleagues, spread the word, and please give generously to EyePAC, Patient Advocacy Fund, and charitable VSEPS Education Fund.
We need YOU, so we can all continue the fight to protect patient safety. Together we are making a difference.
Kapil G. Kapoor, MD, FACS, FICS, FASRS, President