The seventh annual Physician Anesthesiologists Week, January 31-February 6, is the ideal opportunity to tell policymakers, health care executives, the media, and the public that physician anesthesiologists are made for this moment. Whether it's during a surgical crisis, providing pain management, or serving on the front lines of a pandemic, physician anesthesiologists are uniquely qualified to lead patient care.

Each year, the specialty gains momentum in showcasing the importance of patient-centered, physician-led care. This year, the world is taking notice, thanks to all of you who hung up your surgical caps to head to the ER to serve as airway management experts for the sickest of patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

ASA members also are spearheading change, providing invaluable insight and leading innovation during this critical time They're doing this within their own hospital systems, and will be doing so during Physician Anesthesiologists Week 2021, through virtual visits with legislators, media interviews, state proclamations, in-hospital activities, member-developed podcasts and videos, advertisements, and more.

An ASA toolkit is available to help you make the most of this opportunity for advocacy and public outreach. The toolkit includes user-friendly materials such as tips for obtaining a state proclamation and instructions for organizing a virtual state “lobby day.” The instructions and materials can help you:

  • Set up virtual meetings at the state capital or in your lawmaker's district office. Advocate for your patients and your ASA colleagues in one-on-one virtual meetings with influential elected officials and staff. Tips are provided for scheduling face time – and staying on point – with legislators.

  • Engage the media. Increase awareness of the importance of physician-led care in ensuring patient safety by conducting outreach, sending materials, and discussing with reporters the critical role you played in caring for the sickest patients during the pandemic. Instructions, sample materials, interview facilitation tips, and talking points will be included to help you with your efforts.

  • Spread the word online. Use the #PhysAnesWk21 hashtag and ASA's social media messages to sound off about the specialty. You also can post a specially designed ASA Physician Anesthesiologists Week banner on your website.

  • Share your patient stories. Visit ASA's website at www.asahq.org/madeforthismoment/stories/share-your-story/ and share your Made for this Moment stories.

As you make your voice heard locally, ASA will do so nationally to highlight the work all physician anesthesiologists do to advance patient safety and protect patients during the ongoing pandemic.

Together with our Made for this Moment awareness campaign, we can reinforce your status as a physician and your unparalleled expertise, education, and training.

For questions or to learn more, reach out to ASA Public Relations at pr@asahq.org.