Skip to main content
Top of the Page
three physicians walking together at capitol
Protecting the house of medicine is the Washington State Medical Association's specialty. And we get results.

2022 Impact Report

2022 Impact Report Cover

With the support of more than 12,000 physicians and physician assistants in Washington state, the WSMA provides a voice for the physician community and speaks with the power of many. Our members gain strength in this unity, steadfast in our vision to make Washington state the best place to practice medicine and to receive care.

At the WSMA, physicians are our specialty.

Everything we do at the WSMA drives toward supporting and advocating for you.” – Katina Rue, DO, 2022-2023 WSMA President

A robust, diverse, and healthy professional and practice environment is necessary to ensure that patients and communities have access to high-quality care when they need it. We achieve this by advocating on issues of importance to our profession and our patients, providing resources to make our jobs easier, creating space for us to network and develop our professional skills, and enhancing the care we provide—including addressing cultural and clinical issues that historically have led to structural inequity.

It’s simple. Our mission is to advance strong physician leadership and advocacy to shape the future of medicine and advance quality care for all Washingtonians.

We are moving forward, together, and building a vibrant, stronger medical profession and a healthy population.

The WSMA is your WSMA. See for yourself.

Advocacy

Standing together yields results graphic

WSMA’s advocacy focuses on building a strong medical community and a healthy population. In 2021, with membership stronger than ever, our advocacy got results, including:

The WSMA defends and supports you, your patients, and the profession in the Legislature, with state agencies and health plans, in the courts, and beyond. In 2022, our advocacy got considerable results, including:

  • $100 million+ for COVID-19 pandemic public health response.
  • Successfully defended against a lawsuit that threatened to upend the established difference
  • between medical malpractice and informed consent.
  • Medicaid reimbursement increases for primary care, pediatric, and behavioral health services.
  • Worked with the Oregon Board of Medicine to allow continuity and follow-up telehealth care
  • from out-of-state physicians. Alaska has now approved a similar change.
  • A ban on manufacture and sale of large-capacity magazines and a prohibition on untraceable
  • “ghost guns.”
  • Improved and streamlined licensing at the Washington Medical Commission.
  • Advocated for Medicare sustainability, telemedicine flexibilities, and prior authorization reform.
  • Defeated numerous scope-of-practice proposals that would have jeopardized patient safety.
  • Successfully supported a lawsuit challenging the flawed independent dispute resolution
  • provisions of the federal No Surprises Act.

Quality Improvement

The WSMA and the WSMA Foundation advance quality initiatives that reflect our commitment to advancing quality care and promoting healthy populations across Washington. Here’s what that looked like in 2022:

Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest

Honoring Choices® Pacific Northwest

Facilitated more than 30,000 advance care planning conversations across 56 health care organizations and 48 community groups, translated the Honoring Choices PNW advance directive and the Washington Portable Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment, or POLST, into 14 languages, and distributed more than 31,000 professionally printed Honoring Choices PNW advance directives to WSMA members.

Better Prescribing, Better Treatment

Better Prescribing, Better Treatment

Achieved a 16% reduction in overall acute prescriptions above guidelines and a 19% reduction in pediatric acute prescriptions above guidelines. All physicians and physician assistants in Washington state can now opt in to receive quarterly prescriber-level reports.

Healthy Doctors, Healthier Patients

Healthy Doctors, Healthier Patients

Secured funding from The Physicians Foundation to identify organizational and leadership best practices to reduce burnout and improve wellness and provide professional development on improving emotional intelligence, recognizing burnout in peers, and providing peer support.

Education

Impact Report cover

The WSMA is training the next generation of physician leaders, helping physicians develop the skills they need to thrive professionally, and delivering health equity education to members and physician leaders across Washington. In 2022, our education efforts reached more physicians than ever:

  • WSMA’s Center for Leadership Development, winner of a 2021 American Association of Medical Society Executives Profile of Excellence Award, delivered 16 trainings to 186 physician leaders and 46 health care professionals in the past year.
  • The WSMA and 22 WSMA-accredited providers in Washington, Oregon, and Alaska provided 867 CME activities. In Washington state, the WSMA and 18 WSMA-accredited providers provided 652 CME activities—53% of all CME activities in Washington state. WSMA’s CompleteCME® program partnered with local and national non-accredited organizations to award CME credit for 55 activities.
  • Held bimonthly Health Equity M&M webinars to provide a framework for recognizing and examining our biases and identifying the ways systemic racism exists in our organizations.
  • Launched a Health Equity Leadership Development and Action Collective to provide education, guidance, and support to make lasting, equitable change in our organizations.
  • Hosted a webinar on recognizing inequities in serious illness and end-of-life care.
  • Delivered a COVID-19 webinar series on how to incorporate the COVID-19 vaccines into practice workflows and use effective strategies to engage patients in conversations about the vaccine.

Operational Excellence

The WSMA is a trusted, respected, and effective voice for physicians, our patients, and the communities we care for, regardless of practice setting, specialty, or career choice. In 2022, the WSMA:

  • Appeared in more than 300 news stories online and in print, and in 57 television and 108 radio segments.
  • Successfully leveraged the physician voice in WSMA’s “Talk to Your Doctor” COVID-19 vaccine confidence social media marketing campaign targeting the Northeast Tri Counties. The campaign, winner of the Association Media and Publishing Network’s 2022 Silver EXCEL Award in the “Pandemic Response Campaign” category, had a demonstrable effect by increasing vaccination rates in the region over the course of the campaign.
  • Won six EXCEL Awards recognizing WSMA communications, including the COVID-19 vaccine campaign, 2021 Impact Report, 2021 Legislative Report, and, for WSMA Reports, best cover illustration (two awards) and best editorial/opinion.
  • Exceeded new active physician goal by 31%.
  • 6,499 active physicians retained.
  • Surpassed 2022 total member goal of 12,000 by 441 members.
Join or renew your membership today!