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No event underscores the WSMA’s mission to provide strong physician leadership and advocacy better than the WSMA Annual Meeting.

WSMA Annual Meeting

The 2018 Annual Meeting of the WSMA House of Delegates will take place Oct. 13-14 at The Historic Davenport Hotel in Spokane. Registration for the meeting is now available. If you're attending the meeting, be sure to book your room reservations at the Davenport by Sept. 12 to secure the special WSMA room rate.

If you want to serve as a delegate at the 2018 WSMA Annual Meeting, please contact your local county society or state specialty society. For the Report of the Official Actions from the 2017 WSMA House of Delegates, visit the House of Delegates page.

Keynote presentation

From Values to Action with Harry Kraemer Jr.

Sometimes “doing the right thing” while also delivering outstanding and lasting results can be difficult for leaders to achieve, but Harry Kraemer Jr. knows it can be done.

In his book “From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership,” Kraemer argues that the journey to becoming a values-based leader starts with self-reflection, which he identifies as the first of four principles that guide leaders to make choices that are aligned with their values.

Those four essential principles are self-reflection, balance, true self-confidence and genuine humility.

The WSMA will feature Kraemer as the keynote presenter at the 2018 WSMA Annual Meeting. Values-based leadership talent is necessary and needed more than ever in this time of rapid change in health care, where traditional thinking does not always achieve desired results. From Values to Action will provide guidance. (To complement his presentation, all meeting attendees will receive a copy of Kraemer’s book.)

Important deadlines

Aug. 17
Deadline for reports and resolutions to be received at the WSMA Seattle office for publication in the delegate handbook. Email resolutions to

Aug. 31
Delegate handbook—the compilation of resolutions and other business to be considered by the House of Delegates—will be available for download. Delegates may order the handbook on flash drive by emailing

Sept. 12
Deadline to receive the special discounted room rate at the Historic Davenport Hotel.

Sept. 13
Final deadline for receipt of resolutions at the WSMA Seattle office. Resolutions received after this date must have consent of two-thirds of the House at the opening session to be considered.

Oct. 13-14
2018 WSMA Annual Meeting.

Meeting Agenda

Pre-meeting events

Friday, October 12


4–6 p.m.
WAMPAC Board of Directors meeting
6 p.m.
WSMA Board of Trustees dinner
6:45 p.m.
WSMA Board of Trustees meeting

Saturday, October 13


7:30 a.m.
Registration opens
7:30-8:30 a.m.
Continental breakfast with exhibitors
AMA Delegation meeting
Reference committee orientation breakfast
Welcome breakfast for first-time attendees and early career physicians
8 a.m.
Credentialing opens
8:30-9:30 a.m.
Opening session of the WSMA House of Delegates
President’s welcome
9:30-10 a.m.
Break with exhibitors
10 a.m.
Reference committee meetings


12:30–2 p.m.
WAMPAC luncheon
WSMA Legislator of the Year presentation
2–3 p.m.
House of Delegates reconvenes
Keynote presentation: From Values to Action with Harry Kraemer, Jr.
3–3:30 p.m.
Break with exhibitors
3:30–4:30 p.m.
Physician wellness with Chris Bundy, MD
4:30-5:45 p.m.
Stop the Bleed train-the-trainers
5:45-7 p.m.
Reception for all attendees
Outgoing president’s remarks
Inauguration of WSMA president
7 p.m.
WSMA Foundation 50th anniversary banquet
WSMA William O. Robertson Patient Safety Award
WSMA 50-Year Club members

Sunday, October 14


6:30 a.m.
Reference committee reports available at registration
7 a.m.
WSMA past presidents’ breakfast
County medical society caucus meetings
7:30 a.m.
Continental breakfast
8 a.m.
Final session of the WSMA House of Delegates


Welcome breakfast for first-time attendees and early career physicians

If this is your first time at a WSMA Annual Meeting, or if you're an early career physician (students, residents/fellows, or physicians in the first 10 years of practice), please join us at 7:30 a.m. on Saturday for a welcome breakfast, sponsored by the WSMA's Young Physician Section, Resident and Fellow Section and Medical Student Section. For those new to the House of Delegates, you'll hear about the House's policy development process, including how business is introduced for consideration by the House, the role of the reference committees and the order of business at a typical House meeting. You will also have ample time to ask questions of seasoned delegates. Advance registration required (no charge for members). Register for the breakfast when registering for the WSMA Annual Meeting.

WAMPAC luncheon

The WAMPAC luncheon is all about the intersection of policy and politics-and more so than any time in memory, health care policy is squarely at the forefront of today's political discussions. With important races up and down the ballot in this mid-term election year, we'll get perspectives from special guests on the campaign landscape and what it means for the practice of medicine. Join us at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday, where we'll also present the WSMA Legislator of the Year award, in honor of the state lawmaker most instrumental in helping advance our priority health care policy.

Tickets to the WAMPAC luncheon cost $40 and can be purchased when registering for the WSMA Annual Meeting. For members of the WAMPAC Diamond Club, attendance is free! Not a member of the Diamond Club? Learn more at the WAMPAC page.

Keynote presentation: From Values to Action with Harry Kraemer

In his book "From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership," Harry Kraemer, Jr. argues for the necessity of values-based leadership and its four essential components (self-reflection, balance, true self-confidence, and genuine humility), particularly during an era of rapid change where traditional thinking does not always achieve desired results. In this keynote presentation at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Harry will offer current and aspiring health care leaders a framework to adopt the four principles of values-based leadership to make their organizations beacons of enduring value in the world. Meeting attendees will receive a complimentary copy of Harry's book.

Harry Kraemer, Jr. is professor of management and strategy at Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management, where he teaches in the MBA and the Executive MBA programs. He is the author of two bestselling leadership books: "From Values to Action: The Four Principles of Values-Based Leadership" and "Becoming the Best: Build a World-Class Organization Through Values-Based Leadership." Harry is the former chairman and chief executive officer of Baxter International Inc., a multi-billion-dollar global health care company focusing on products and therapies for treating hemophilia, kidney disease, immune disorders and other chronic and acute medical conditions.

Physician wellness with Chris Bundy, MD

In 2014, as the issue of physician burnout and suicide was receiving increasing levels of attention, the Washington Physicians Health Program (WPHP) partnered with Mindfulness Northwest to create a training program for clinicians and their spouses. The result was Mindfulness for Health Care Professionals, an intensive stress reduction and burnout prevention training program containing the core elements of the renowned Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction curriculum customized and extended for health care practitioners, leadership and staff. Join WPHP Medical Director Chris Bundy, MD, MPH, at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday to learn about new strategies the program is employing to bring physicians together to help each other find solutions to the common problems of stress, isolation and burnout.

Stop the Bleed training

Motivated by the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary Shooting and multiple tragedies that have occurred in the ensuing years, law enforcement, the federal government and the medical community joined forces to improve survivability from manmade or natural mass casualty events. They determined that by providing law enforcement and civilian bystanders the skills and basic tools to stop uncontrolled bleeding in an emergency, lives would be saved. The result: A basic training program in bleeding control principles called Stop the Bleed, which is today being used across the country.

This train-the-trainers workshop is being offered by Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center Trauma Services, in partnership with the American College of Surgeons Committee on Trauma. Attend this session at 4:30 p.m. on Saturday and learn how you can get involved helping to spread awareness and skills training in bleeding control principles.

Reception and presidential inauguration

Join us for a free afternoon reception on Saturday at 5:45 p.m.! Socialize with other meeting attendees and mingle with WSMA's physician leaders while enjoying appetizers and a cash bar. You'll hear remarks from outgoing WSMA President Donna Smith, MD, and see the inauguration and swearing in of incoming WSMA president, Tom Schaaf, MD.

WSMA Foundation 50th anniversary banquet

You are invited to join a celebratory dinner on Saturday at 7 p.m. in honor of the WSMA Foundation for Health Care Improvement's 50th anniversary. Come help us celebrate a half century of supporting and inspiring physicians to create a healthier Washington. We do this by giving patients and physicians tools to encourage conversations about medical care options using shared decision-making. We do this by working to reduce physician burnout and reconnect physicians with the joy of practicing medicine. After all, healthy doctors mean healthier patients.

In its 50th year, the WSMA Foundation has greater reach and impact than ever before, with ambitious programs that touch and improve the lives of patients, physicians and providers throughout Washington state. Programs such as

  • Choosing Wisely®
  • Healthy Doctors, Healthier Patients
  • The Medical Officer Collaborative
  • The Clinical Performance Improvement Network
  • Advance care planning efforts such as Honoring Choices® Pacific Northwest, Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment (POLST), and the Washington End-of-Life Coalition

The evening will begin with the presentation of the WSMA William O. Robertson Patient Safety Awards and announcement of new inductees into the WSMA 50-Year Club.

Tickets to the dinner are $100 and can purchased when registering for the WSMA Annual Meeting. Your ticket purchase to join the evening's celebration will help ensure the WSMA Foundation continues its important work to create a healthier Washington. Learn more about our work at the WSMA Foundation page.

About the Meeting

The Annual Meeting of the WSMA House of Delegates (or the WSMA Annual Meeting) is the WSMA's premiere policy-making event, when the approximately 200 voting members of the WSMA House of Delegates gather to debate and determine policy for the association, elect officers and network with colleagues. All are welcome to attend the WSMA Annual Meeting to attend the educational offerings, network and learn more about the association.

All legislative power of the WSMA—including the power to alter, amend or repeal the bylaws—is vested in the House of Delegates. All business of the House is conducted according to parliamentary procedures as outlined in “The Standard Code of Parliamentary Procedure.” The speaker of the House serves as parliamentarian. The speaker of the House is Dr. Richard “Dick” Whitten, internist, Sammamish. The vice speaker of the House is Dr. Deborah Harper, pediatrician, Spokane.

How the House of Delegates operates

The House convenes its opening session on Saturday morning of the WSMA Annual Meeting. At this time, guests are invited to speak to the delegates and all reports and resolutions are referred to reference committees. This is followed by meetings of the reference committees on Saturday.

The House holds a second session on Sunday morning. The reference committees present their reports for consideration by the House on Sunday.

Learn more about the House of Delegates.

Reference committees

The in-person reference committees scheduled at the WSMA Annual Meeting are the key to the deliberations of the House of Delegates. Members of the House and individual members of the WSMA are invited and encouraged to attend these reference committee meetings.

Each reference committee is made of three members of the House appointed by the speaker and vice speaker.

The chair of the reference committee has the prerogative to permit non-members of the WSMA to present testimony. Committee meetings are open to the press.

When offering testimony before the reference committee, or on the floor of the House, please identify yourself and the society or organization which you represent. It is helpful, unless raising a point of order or asking a question, if you indicate you are speaking in favor of, or in opposition to, the resolution or report under discussion.

Remember, the reference committee is the most appropriate place for you to express your opinions and those of your constituents. Discussion on the floor of the House on Sunday is generally in response to the recommendations made by the reference committee and is not intended as a replay of more extensive testimony given at the committee hearings.

Most reference committees complete their business in two to three hours on Saturday. The committee reports are published under the direction of the speaker and vice speaker and are available on the WSMA website by Saturday evening and in hard copy by 7 a.m. on Sunday.

Virtual reference committees and general discussion forum

The WSMA offers password-protected online reference committees, available year-round, for those members who aren't able to attend the in-person reference committees, or who wish to review and discuss resolutions prior to the WSMA Annual Meeting. The WSMA also offers a general discussion forum, also available year-round, for members to develop their policy ideas or start a discussion on any general topic. Learn more about these forums and join the discussion.

How to Write a Resolution

A resolution is a proposal asking the WSMA to take a position or act on an important issue. Before authoring a resolution, please research existing WSMA policy by reviewing the WSMA Policy Compendium. Current policy may already address the issue in question, negating the need for a resolution. Alternately, the author may wish to modify the resolution entirely or may seek to modify existing WSMA policy.

A resolution typically consists of a series of “Whereas clauses” which serve to explain the reason for the resolution, and one or more “Resolved clauses” which state the specific action proposed.

Whereas clauses should carry a message and develop a set of statements that requires a solution. Collect relevant facts to form the basis for the Whereas statements in the resolution. Include only a few of these facts as their purpose is to outline a problem, not to provide an exhaustive discussion. Statements of fact in Whereas clauses should be cited with references.

Resolved clauses should address what the WSMA should do or what position the WSMA should take on the identified topic. If adopted by the House, the resolution may become the foundation of a new WSMA program or policy. The Resolved clauses must make sense as standalone statements—if a resolution is adopted by the House, only the Resolved clauses become WSMA policy; the Whereas clauses do not.

How should I format a resolution?

A resolution should include five basic elements:

  1. A title, concisely reflecting the action for which it calls
  2. An author (see “Who can introduce a resolution” below)
  3. Whereas clauses
  4. Resolved clauses. Each Resolved clause in a resolution must be followed by one of the following notations indicating its purpose:
    • New HOD policy
    • Modify current HOD policy
    • Modify bylaws
    • Rescind HOD policy
    • Reaffirm HOD policy
    • Directive to take action
  5. A fiscal note. The fiscal note will be determined by WSMA staff in consultation with the resolution author.

You may also use this resolution template to assist you in preparing your resolution.

Who can introduce a resolution?

While any WSMA member can write a resolution, all resolutions must be sponsored by a WSMA delegate, alternate delegate or member of the Board of Trustees in order to be considered by the House of Delegates. If you are interested in authoring a resolution but you are not a delegate or a member of the board, the WSMA will work with you to develop your resolution idea and enable its introduction. Email or call 206.441.9762 for assistance.

What are the deadlines for submitting a resolution?

Board members or delegates/alternates must submit their resolutions by email to by Aug. 17 to be included in the WSMA Delegate Handbook distributed prior to the 2018 WSMA Annual Meeting. The final deadline for receipt of resolutions at the WSMA Seattle office is Sept. 13. Resolutions received after Sept. 13 will be distributed to the House of Delegates at the opening session and require a two-thirds affirmative vote by the House to be accepted as official business. 

Can I get help? 

WSMA staff are here to help you develop your resolution idea. If you have questions or need assistance, help is just an email or phone call away at or 206.441.9762.

WSMA Delegate Duties

To fulfill your responsibilities as a delegate:

  1. Be familiar with the WSMA. Learn about our strategic priorities. Read WSMA Reports and the Membership Memo.
  2. Review the official actions of the previous House of Delegates (found at the top of this page) and the WSMA Bylaws (also included in the delegate handbook).
  3. Alert your colleagues that you are a delegate to the WSMA. Seek their comments and recommendations on WSMA programs and policies.
  4. Communicate your society’s or your individual recommendations for the establishment of WSMA policies or programs through the introduction of a resolution.
  5. Be thoroughly familiar with the reports and resolutions contained in the delegate handbook.
  6. Work with your delegation. Divide reference committee responsibilities so your members are represented in the deliberations of each of the reference committees. Encourage all members to attend and participate in reference committee hearings.
  7. Take action! If you have an issue or concern, write the president, call the executive director, introduce a resolution or volunteer for a WSMA committee.


Please note that the WSMA may have a photographer and/or videographer on-site at this event to gather imagery for use by the WSMA in its communications materials and channels, as well as for media outreach. These images will be the property of the WSMA, and the WSMA will not sell or otherwise market event imagery. If you have any questions regarding imagery taken at a WSMA event, please contact Milana McLead at 206.441.9762 or

Corporate Partners

The WSMA wishes to thank the following corporate partners for their generous contributions. For more information on becoming a partner, review our corporate partners brochure or call Pauline Proulx at 206.441.9762 or email


Founded in 1981 under the auspices of the WSMA, Physicians Insurance A Mutual Company is the Northwest's leading medical professional liability insurance company, physician-owned and exclusively endorsed to this day by the WSMA. For over 30 years, Physicians Insurance has remained the stable, committed and local insurer for physicians, clinics, facilities and hospitals, providing risk-management consulting, continuing medical education and claims administration services to more than 7,000 members in Washington, Idaho, Oregon and Wyoming.


Premera Blue Cross’ mission is to provide peace of mind to our members about their healthcare. We provide health insurance and related services to 1.9 million people in Washington and Alaska. Premera Blue Cross has operated in Washington since 1933 and Alaska since 1952 and is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.


First Choice Health is a Seattle-based, physician and hospital owned company that serves the Northwestern United States. We have provided network, administrative and client services since 1985. Just under one million people use our array of products and services in Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and select areas of North Dakota and South Dakota.


Hall Render is the largest health care-focused law firm in the country, with over 40 years of experience in health law business and 200 attorneys serving health care clients.


Washington Permanente Medical Group is a multi-specialty group practice of nearly 1,400 physicians, physician assistants, optometrists, midwives and psychologists in Washington state, united by a commitment to excellence, collaboration, compassion, stewardship and innovation.

Join the WSMA today