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Our Top 10 Moments of 2021 and what’s to come!

Our “Top 10” list has become an annual tradition. After reviewing last year’s list, we were quick to note resilience and lessons learned from the pandemic by both our members and by us were irrefutably two themes from 2020 that continued through 2021. While those realities did not alter this year, much did for MMS and its members. Ultimately, having experienced and learned from these past 2 years, we are indeed stronger and more focused on building a better, brighter future.


And in case you haven’t heard it lately, thank you for your membership and thank you for what you do to improve the health of this community!


Our 2021 Top 10:

  1. 2021 President’s Gala. The virtual event ended a challenging presidency in very unique times for Dr. Danielle Hassel. Her leadership was greatly appreciated and admired and I was honored to take the reins of our 144-year-old organization from her. Thank you again, Dr. Hassel, for your continued service.

What’s next?  I hand over those reins to our incoming president, Dr. Chris Pokabla. Look for an email and please save the date: IN-PERSON President’s Gala – Saturday, January 29th, 2022. We plan to execute a safe event allowing us to celebrate our profession in this great community.

  1. Project Access. The Society entered a partnership with the Tennessee Department of Health and our sister metro societies across the state to expand specialty care access for West Tennessee’s uninsured population.

What’s next?  We seek to effectively and efficiently grow this program and ask you to volunteer to see one patient each month. While there is good work occurring to meet this community need, it is time for our own physician community to get better organized and make an even greater impact to assist this vulnerable population.

  1. Our New Strategic Plan. I am very proud that our board of directors took the initiative to create a strategic plan providing us with a vision of where we want our organization to go. If you haven’t reviewed it, it is:

Increase membership to 1,100 dues-paying members.

§  Create a membership experience that is tailored to an individual physician’s needs.

§  Bring together the house of medicine through innovative solutions and strategic partnerships with healthcare stakeholders.

Create an inclusive medical community that supports and advocates for physicians, their practices, and their patients.

§  Reorganize governance and committee structure to grow and maintain physician engagement.

§  Grow MMS’s financial position to fund innovative programs through an endowment.

Utilize the talents of our members to improve the health of our communities.

§  Position MMS leaders in community leadership roles that have the greatest impact on community health.

§  Grow Project Access West Tennessee to bring more quality healthcare to all West Tennessee residents.

  1. MedTemps. I am proud to share that MedTemps was instrumental in our community’s Covid-19 response, helping to ensure practices stayed open, and even becoming a trusted staffing partner for testing and vaccination sites. At certain times this year, MedTemps saw triple the number of positions filled than pre-pandemic.
  2. Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion. Our DEI efforts continued in partnership with Bluff City Medical Society. We are continuing our intentional efforts at diversifying the leadership of Memphis Medical Society and TMA.
  3. Membership. Membership is the lifeline of this organization. As of this writing, we have surpassed 1,000 dues-paying members of Memphis Medical Society, and 2,400+ members overall when our student and resident members are included.

What’s next? We need to finalize renewals for 2022 before we officially celebrate. So, please, renew your membership, and thank you for all your support!

  1. New Benefits. A number of new member benefits were added this year. First, we added an official PPE and back-office supplies partnership with our friends at Ladd Safety, who were also integral to our pandemic response. Second, we added CPR/BLS certification to our menu of offerings. Certification classes will be hosted at our office and we will also partner with your clinic to bring our certified instructor to your practice.
  2. Partnerships. We continued our relationship with the Tennessee Medical Association and closed one of our most successful legislative sessions ever—influencing issues like scope of practice, telehealth, COVID-19 procedural changes and balance billing. Read more here.

What’s next? I am very excited about the opportunities we are pursuing with other third parties, including our friends at Mid-South MGMA. More to come on that!

  1. Events. We know you might be Zoom-ed out (us, too). I do want to give kudos to our staff for executing several online events, most of which can be found on our YouTube channel. We also hosted in-person events to welcome our M1’s and new residents, as well as our annual Legislative Dinner. Our staff stayed on its toes, and ready with a backup plan for every event.
  2. MMS staff. Speaking of that phenomenal staff, we have even more to be proud of… Our staff has grown from six to fifteen since this time last year.

What’s next? We will continue to feature this impressive staff in our publications, so please be on the lookout to get to know these amazing people even more and don’t hesitate to reach out to them with any questions about how the MMS can better support you and your practice.

At a time when many question the role of organized medicine and local medical societies, we continue to prove our relevance and viability! Stay engaged on social media and at

Here’s to making 2022 our best year yet!

Best to all,

Andrew Watson, M.D.