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The Wisconsin Surgical Society


The Wisconsin Surgical Society welcomes you to our web site. Please take your time and peruse the site. It is designed for our members to partake in interesting discussions, share exciting news, keep abreast of developing legislation, and promote better overall networking amongst colleagues in similar fields.

Call for Abstracts

To members of The Wisconsin Surgical Society:

This is the first call for abstracts for the Annual meeting of The Wisconsin Surgical Society, A Chapter of the American College of Surgeons, to be held on Friday, 4 November and Saturday, 5 November 2016. We are looking forward to another productive and enjoyable opportunity for education and fellowship this autumn. The venue will be The American Club in Kohler, Wisconsin.

The Friday sessions will highlight research across the state through presentations by Medical Students, Residents, and Fellows, and the format will include both oral and poster presentations. The program will feature a Presidential Address from David Schultz, MD as well as an update on ACS activities and Expert Panel Sessions that are clinically relevant to our members. We will again be hosting the Physician-in-Training Cancer Research Paper Competition sponsored by the ACS Commission of Cancer. The Resident or Fellow author of the best Oncology research paper will represent our ACS Chapter in a national Commission on Cancer research competition. Per COC requirements, medical students are not eligible for this award.

Saturday will feature the Beaumont Lecture, given this year by Brian Jacob, MD, a minimally invasive surgeon and creator of the International Hernia Facebook collaborative. Members and Advanced Care Practitioners are also invited to submit abstracts for oral or video presentations on Saturday morning. We will also be offering the popular "How I do it" session for brief clinical reports, case series, and video presentations of topics or operations within one's practice. Statistical analysis is not required. At this time, you may either submit the video itself, or a brief summary of its content and informational objectives. Please do not plan to include voice narration in the video so that the presenting author may explain its contents at the time of presentation. Please limit the video length to 7 minutes. Finally, please plan to be available to upload your video presentation at the meeting on Friday, 4 November 2016.

All abstracts must be submitted through the online abstract submission website at The deadline for abstract submission is Friday, July 8, 2016.

All Medical Student, Resident, Fellow, and Advanced Care Practitioner abstracts must be sponsored by a WSS member who should plan to attend the meeting. If the sponsor is not able to be present, the sponsor will need to arrange an alternative WSS member to sponsor the presentation.

If you have any questions, please contact Dr. Funk at or Dr. Linebarger at

Our annual meeting is a fantastic opportunity to discuss relevant issues pertaining to the clinical practice of surgery in a way that allows our membership to make and reinforce friendships across our state. It is also hosted at a Five Star Resort with a world class spa. Please encourage your colleagues and trainees, especially those who are new to Wisconsin, to submit an abstract and/or attend. We look forward to seeing you this autumn.


Luke Funk, MD, MPH, FACS & Jared Linebarger, MD, FACS
Program Committee Co-Chairpersons

President's Message


I am pleased to introduce the WSS Advocacy Blog, courtesy of Dr. Amy Liepert. As many of you may know, Amy currently serves as the RAS Liaison to the Health Policy Advocacy Council (HPAC) of the College. In other words, she is our "go to" expert on the wheelings and dealings in Washington, DC, Madison and parts in between. As you know, under Shanu Kothari's leadership, we have used this forum to ask for Member action, be it writing letters to Senators and Congressmen, or calling local representatives to advocate for certain issues that affect us and our practice of Surgery. We appreciate your responsiveness to these calls to action! Dr. Liepert is particularly well connected within the College and will put our Chapter at the forefront of future advocacy efforts. Thank you, Dr. Liepert!

Michael Garren, MD, FACS
President, Wisconsin Surgical Society

Leadership and Advocacy Summit

April has come and gone – hopefully with it so has the rainy cold weather to make way for May flowers. April also brought a very important time of year for Surgical Health Policy Advocacy. The American College of Surgeons held the annual Leadership and Advocacy Summit in Washington DC from April 9-12.

The Leadership portion of the Summit was an opportunity to delve into timely leadership areas. This year's agenda included: communication and teamwork, strategic thinking, engagement and sustainability, role of social media and emotional intelligence. Also highlighted were various state chapter reports, presentations from Adil Haider MD, FACS on disparities in surgical care, David Rogers MD, FACS discussing team conflict, and much more. Collage leadership present included Patricia Turner, MD, FACS, Director of Division of Member Services and David Hoyt, MD, FACS, Executive Director.

The Advocacy portion of the Summit began Sunday evening with Keynote speaker Chris Matthews of MSNBC's Hardball. Christian Shalgian, Director of Division of Advocacy and Health Policy, Frank Opelka, MD, FACS Medical Director of Quality and Health Policy and Patrick Bailey MD, FACS, Medical Director of Advocacy also attended this portion of the summit. Monday was filled with Advocacy instruction and state breakout and networking sessions followed by lobby and issues briefings to prepare for Lobby Day on Capitol Hill. The lunch speaker was Larry Sabato an election analyst and author who gave a stimulating perspective on the lively presidential election race and contrasted with Chris Matthews in a number of ways.

Topics discussed with legislators during Capitol Hill visits on Tuesday April, 12th included: ensuring adequate surgical workforce in underserved areas, reinforcing the importance of support for Graduate Medical Education, Removing Billing Barriers of Colorectal screening colonoscopies, support of cancer initiatives, responsible use of CMS data by public reporting agencies, and trauma funding. Additionally, surgeons discussed with their legislators and legislative staff MACRA and MIPS implementation.

Attendees from the WSS included: Michael Garren, MD, FACS (WSS President), Amy E. Liepert, MD, FACS (WSS Policy Chair), Charles Chang MD, FACS (Thedacare), Girma Tefera, MD, FACS, (ACS Operation Giving Back Medical Director), Rachel Morris, MD (MCW Resident), and Moritz Wyler von Ballmoos, MD (MCW CT Fellow). Legislative offices visited by this group included: Speaker Paul Ryan, Senator Tammy Baldwin, Senator Ron Johnson, Representative Mark Pocan, and Representative Gwen Moore.

The Leadership and Advocacy Summit is a yearly meeting held in Washington DC. In addition to being informative of current and timely legislative agenda items impacting surgeons, it also provides numerous venues for networking. The 2017 Summit will be held May 6-9th at the Renaissance Hotel in Washington DC. Additional advocacy info will be available via this blog and at



Michael Garren, MD, FACS
President Elect:
David Schultz, MD, FACS
Secretary/ Treasurer:
Philip Vogt, MD, FACS
Past President:
Shanu Kothari, MD, FACS

The Wisconsin Surgical Society Membership

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