Greetings to our MWIA colleagues. It was a pleasure to welcome all who attended our 109th Annual Meeting (virtual) in March.

The meeting highlighted women’s leadership in healthcare, featuring keynotes from notable figures like NIH Director Dr. Monica Bertagnolli, Congresswoman Kim Schrier, ethics and legal medicine expert Dr. Elizabeth Valencia, top surgeon Carrie Cunningham, negotiation expert Hannah Riley Bowles, – and a special message from U.S Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy. Discussions covered diverse topics such as navigating medicine’s legal landscape, diversity, equity, and inclusion, gender dynamics in negotiation, the impact of sex and gender on health, and efforts to eradicate cervical cancer. Dr. Susan Hingle was inaugurated as AMWA President. Workshops focused on professional development, narrative medicine, legal insights, career diversification, and advocacy. Attendees explored holistic approaches to healthcare, including expressive interventions for cancer care and the relationship between music, humanities, and healing. Paint Night, which I organized, was held virtually. Overall, the meeting provided practical strategies for navigating challenges, enhancing patient care, and promoting well-being in the healthcare profession.

In the first quarter of 2024, the American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA) focused on numerous initiatives aimed at advancing healthcare, promoting gender diversity, and advocating for women’s rights. These included:
Raising the awareness of women’s health and the importance of sex and gender-specific health through screenings of the film “Ms. Diagnosed.” AMWA was honored recently to be at the White House for President Biden’s signing of an Executive Order that marked a historic investment in women’s health.
Advocating for reproductive rights and joining Vice President Kamala Harris’s Reproductive Freedom Tour Launch
Co-organizing the 6th Annual HPV Prevention Week and attending the White House Forum on Cervical Cancer
Promoting opportunities for women physicians to serve on boards through a partnership with Korn Ferry and Women Who Lead
Promoting awareness of rare diseases and the additional challenges faced by women with rare diseases and participating in the White House Rare Disease Forum
Celebrating the tenth anniversary of our Physicians Against the Trafficking of Humans (PATH) program which continues to provide education to healthcare practitioners and students.
Continuing commitment to tobacco control, firearm screening, and obesity treatment access.
Promoting AMWA leadership certification programs and mentorship opportunities
Advancing menstrual equity in the U.S. and abroad, thanks to a partnership with the Global CSR Foundation, the First Lady of Suriname and funding from KuCoin.
Organizing a stakeholder summit on cardiometabolic health and obesity in women.

AMWA celebrated National Women Physicians Day on February 3rd, the birthday of Dr. Elizabeth Blackwell, who became the first woman to receive a medical degree in the United States in 1849. AMWA honored pioneering women physicians in March, Women’s History Month, and during February, Black History Month. For those interested in the history of AMWA, we encourage virtual tours of the Van Hoosen Farm, the home of AMWA founder Dr. Bertha Van Hoosen.

Overall, AMWA’s activities in the first quarter of 2024 demonstrated its multifaceted approach to advancing healthcare, promoting gender equity, and advocating for women’s rights on national and international platforms.

Karen Y. Poirier-Brode MD;CM
National Coordinator