Welcome to the Worcester District Medical Society website. In Worcester County there has been a Society of Physicians safeguarding the values of our profession for 230 years. Over this time it has steadfastly promoted the health of our community, the proper treatment of the sick and injured in our care, as well as the education and training of our fellow physicians and students as a means to those ends. Much has changed over the last two centuries, not least of which has been the exponential increase in biomedical knowledge and its application for the improvement of our common human condition across a wide range of sociopolitical circumstances and economic constructs. Through it all this Society been engaged in both our community and our medical profession – and has been fortunate to maintain a forward-facing attitude and medical culture in our own area. It is simply our Professional heritage. Nevertheless, this work is never done, and I am pleased and proud to tell you we are still at it in our own time.
Indeed, the need for a Professional Medical Society like ours may arguably never have been greater than it is today. The steady rise in State and federal regulatory controls over the practice of medicine and the ascendence of large corporate entities to manage regulatory and reporting requirements and succeed financially have swept across our medical ecosystem almost obliterating the smaller practices of physicians who had been embedded within their community for a lifetime. While there are undeniable benefits that have accrued from this evolution of medical care, it is also producing a corporate/medical monoculture very different than what came before and perhaps not as resilient. Physicians of all stripes are becoming employed “Providers.” They are becoming more itinerant than community-embedded and are more dissociated from colleagues in their own communities outside the confines of corporate entity they are working for. Separated from the support of a society of colleagues that nurtures the values which have helped sustain them as “Doctors” in the everyday practice of medicine (as opposed to being valued employees), they are burning out at higher rates. We may be an antidote.
Worcester District Medical Society is one of the districts of the Massachusetts Medical Society and is a significant part of that trusted leadership voice in health care. We advocate for the shared interests of patients and Physicians. We do our best to enhance and protect Physician-Patient relationships and preserve a Physician’s ability to make clinical decisions for the benefit of their patients. We continue to promote research, medical education, and training as a way to make sure our clinical decisions actually do benefit our patients. There are many ways to have an impact in your community and beyond. Our members have made significant contributions to the health of the community around us. So, I invite you to join us and be a part of this 230-year-old endeavor. Meet and enjoy the company of colleagues you may have only heard of at one of our events. Peruse our website to see what we are up to and see what might interest you – and to make sure your voice is heard on these matters. There is much to accomplish, and we will do our best if we do it together.
Giles F. Whalen, MD
WDMS President 2022-2024
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