RAAPM Fellowship Programs Should Support Their Trainees at the Young Professional Membership (YPM) Level

By Steven B. Porter, MD    Aug 20, 2019

Steven B. Porter, MD, Program director, RAAPM fellowship, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, Florida.

The ASRA Young Professional Membership (YPM) costs $180 and provides a fellow with an ASRA membership that spans the academic year of his or her one year fellowship plus first year in practice. I think it behooves all program directors to support their fellows at this level. It is important to remember the significant opportunity cost that our fellows take on so as to complete their RAAPM fellowships. For example, where I work (and where I completed my RAAPM fellowship), our fellows are paid a PGY-5 salary. Nothing more, nothing less.

One hundred and eighty dollars is not the kind of money that you will find in your couch. I feel strongly that our fellows should receive recognition for their dedication to advancing the field of regional anesthesiology and acute pain medicine. We can demonstrate our support in many ways, one of them being ASRA YPM.

There are three reasons why I believe it is important to set an example of supporting our fellows with a YPM:

  1. To recognize their dedication to advanced training in our field
  2. To pay forward the next crop of RAAPM trainees
  3. To support ASRA’s growing membership

Let’s take a minute to expand on these individually.

Our field grows by training the best and brightest. The amount of clinical and non-clinical hours that our fellows dedicate to RAAPM is astounding. The journal of ASRA, Regional Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, now has the 5th highest ranking impact factor among all anesthesiology journals and it is due to the scholarly activity of our fellows and consultants. We can recognize our fellows’ contributions by supporting them at the YPM level.

When our fellows complete their RAAPM training, many of them will stay in academic medicine to further our field. They themselves will understand that RAAPM fellows are not simply PGY-5 residents, but, rather, transitioning consultants. As such, they will want to continue to differentiate their RAAPM fellows at the YPM level. We can pay it forward.

Lastly, ASRA’s membership continues to grow as we become leaders in perioperative acute pain medicine and expand our footprint in perioperative ultrasonography. As the membership grows, so does the demand for services from ASRA. The best way to support these demands is by increasing the resources that ASRA has to support its members. By supporting our fellows at the YPM level, we are also contributing to what ASRA can provide its member base.

ASRA is here to provide benefits for its members and the entire regional anesthesiology and pain medicine community. As a community, we need to take care of our members, especially those who are taking on the additional hardship of the RAAPM fellowship. Please join me in setting an example of supporting our hard working RAAPM fellows at the YPM level.

For more information on the ASRA YPM, please visit this page.


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