Early Career Physicians Engagement Inspiration: ACP South Dakota Chapter

Eric Chow, MD, FACP
Chair, Early Career Physicians Committee
Hospital Medicine
Monument Health, Rapid City, SD

How long have you been leading the South Dakota Chapter Early Career Physicians (SDECP)? Please also share a little about yourselfwhere and how you practice?

I have been chair of the SDECP for almost 2 years.  Currently, I am a hospitalist at a community hospital. Previously, I was a primary care physician.

How many members do you serve?

Actually, I'm not sure of the exact number of total members in our state chapter. We have almost 100 early career physicians, some of whom are actually residents from a local residency program. 

How often do you get together and in what ways (virtual, face to face, hybrid)?

I try to have live get-together events at least twice a year. During the pandemic, we did try Zoom meetings, which were not successful. The activities that were successful were usually sponsored and funded by the chapter (free food and drinks). I am hoping to build more engagement with our early career physicians with these activities so they would be willing to volunteer to help other committees.

See the social journal club event that the early career physicians in the ACP South Dakota Chapter held last spring.

What are you hoping to accomplish with your ECP chapter in the next year? Are any of your members planning on attending the San Diego meeting in 2023?

A handful of us are planning to go to ACP 2023 in San Diego, which would be a great time to do another event for our chapter while there. I would say the reason for our chapter’s success is having written goals to reach a certain level of achievement (Gold Status) and having committee chairs responsible for hitting some of the requirements.

Your Governor, Robert L. Allison, MD, FACP, mentioned in your chapter’s August 2022 newsletter that the South Dakota Chapter is known for being the “best small chapter in the country”? Can you explain what he means by that?

We are a small state—activities are difficult to coordinate between two different time zones and with most physicians living on polar opposite sides of the state. I often have two separate events occurring simultaneously in different parts of the state to accommodate the majority of early career physicians.