If you're a mother in medicine and you haven't heard about Physician Moms Group, you might be living under a (social media) rock. PMG, which started in 2014 as a Facebook group for exchanging advice and support between women physicians who are moms or moms to be, has morphed into a community of more than 60,000 women with an influential internet presence. Any group of women that can sell out the entire stock of Instant Pots on Amazon in minutes or lobby to get discounts on coveted clothing or other products has some serious clout! As part of the group's continued evolution, founder Hala Sabry, DO and her best friend Dina Seif, MD recently held their first CME Conference in Las Vegas on April 1st, 2017, entitled Redefining Dr. Mom. And I was lucky enough to be able to attend!
Let me start out by saying that this was by far the most interesting and engaging CME activity that I have ever witnessed. There is the tendency at such events to plop down in the back row, pour yourself a large cup of coffee, and whip out your phone to scroll email or social media. Instead, this conference was chock full of useful and relevant information, presented in a dynamic and interactive format. Presentations ranged in topic from recognition and prevention of burnout, to financial planning strategies, to nonclinical paths in medicine. To top it off, there was a female physician entrepreneur panel moderated by ZDogg MD (Hala's friend and local Las Vegan)!
ZDogg in the house!
When I looked around at the other attendees, I was struck by the diversity of women in the room. I saw many ethnicities, shapes, and ages. Some women wore jeans while others were clad in suits. Some had bouffants, others had beach hair. There were bare faces and full makeup. Yet we were all physician mothers, present to discuss what might be lacking in our careers and learn what might enhance our current work-life balance. Each excellent presenter shared a personal experience as part of her talk that represented a watershed moment in her journey, something that had led her to question or change her presumed path in medicine.
Another common thread throughout presentations was the emphasis on identifying core values as a way to assess happiness and drive future direction. The presenters also prompted attendees to think outside of standard paradigms - regarding self-care, business, and leadership or mentoring roles. Included as well were optional organized social events for the two nights surrounding the conference - a spa outing and dinner, plus a dinner and Cirque du Soleil show. Being somewhat of a "local" to Vegas (I travel there frequently in the winter), I also led a small group of PMGers and their families on a hike in the Red Rocks the next morning!
PMG is definitely planning more CMEs for the future, and I would highly recommend attending. Also, if you are not a member and are interested in joining, visit MyPMG.com to supply your own credentials, or have a Facebook friend add you to the closed group.