• Congratulations to the 2022-2023 SAAS Visiting Professors!
  • Lily Cheng, MD is the recipient of the 2022 SAAS Junior Faculty Award!
  • Vivek Pamulapati, MD is the recipient of the 2022 Esther Tsai Sugg Award for the highest scoring SAAS abstract to the Academic Surgical Congress!
  • Romeo Ignacio MD, Chee-Chee Stucky MD, and Hop Tran Cao MD are the recipients of the 2022 SAAS – SUS Mid Career Award!
  • Calvin Chao, MD, is the recipient of the 2022 SAAS Resident/Fellow Development Scholarship!
  • Jaewon Lee is the winner of the 2022 SAAS Annual Meeting Travel Award!
  • Romeo Ignacio, MD is the recipient of the SAAS – SUS Leadership Agility Program Scholarship!

 

The growing problems associated with climate change are significantly impacted by the pollution and waste from health care facilities. Our health is, in turn, impacted by the resulting worsening air and water quality, access to nutritious food, and safe shelter.

Connie Shao, MD

Connie Shao, MD

The U.S. health sector contributes 8% of the nation’s greenhouse gas emissions, with the operating room accounting for more than 30% of hospital waste.1,2,3 These emissions are produced through incinerating medical waste, high energy intensity (amount of energy used per occupied space), anesthetic gases, and energy consumption.

The Role of the Surgeon

As surgeons, we are seen as leaders within the health care system, and when it comes to environmentalism, it is no different. We can adopt the concept of a “green operating room” to reduce solid waste by replacing disposable items with reusable ones and salvaging reusable items (e.g., batteries). Surgeons can streamline instrument sets and encourage energy conscious practices, such as turning off OR lights and equipment when not in use. The use of telemedicine when can also reduce carbon emissions and can help increase access for patients. Academic surgeons can adopt practices outside of the clinical setting to incorporate sustainability. This includes virtual recruitment, virtual educational opportunities, and academic travel to limit one’s carbon footprint.

The 2022 Society of Asian Academic Surgeons meeting was in Honolulu, Hawaii. To reduce the environmental impact of traveling to this conference, we took some of the following measures:

  • Utilizing public transportation
  • Booking direct flights and flying coach
  • Cleaning shoes before and after arriving to prevent the collection and spread of seeds
  • Using reusable water bottles, shampoo bars, reusable cutlery, and going straw-less reduce disposable plastic waste
  • Using reef-safe sunscreen to help protect the coral reefs

Academic surgery combines clinical practice with an element of leadership, at all levels. Our recognition and action to reduce wasteful practices can help leave a better earth for generations to come.

References:

  1. Kaiser, B., P.D. Eagan, and H. Shaner, Solutions to health care waste: Life-cycle thinking and “green” purchasing. Environ Health Perspect, 2001. 109(3): p. 205-7.
  2. MacNeill, A.J., R. Lillywhite, and C.J. Brown, The impact of surgery on global climate: A carbon footprinting study of operating theatres in three health systems. Lancet Planet Health, 2017. 1(9): p. e381-e388.
  3. Wu, S. and E. Cerceo, Sustainability Initiatives in the operating room. Jt Comm J Qual Patient Saf, 2021. 47(10): p. 663-672.

Archives

Kuo Family Lectureship: Debbie Lum

“Why do we always have to play the side part? Why aren’t we the protagonist of the story?” asks award-winning filmmaker Debbie Lum at this year’s 2022 Kuo Family Lectureship.

Kui and Wai Fong Lectureship: David Hu

The 2022 Kui and Wai Fong Lectureship was delivered by Professor David Hu from Georgia Institute of Technology. David Hu is a professor of mechanical engineering who draws inspiration from his observation of nature.

SAAS Leadership Highlights

The Society of Asian Academic Surgeons would like to congratulate our members on their many recent accomplishments.

Presidential Address: ‘A is for… American. Asian. Ally.’

Tracy S. Wang, MD, MPH, delivered her Presidential Address to the Society during the 2021 SAAS 6th Annual Meeting, focusing on her thoughts regarding Asian American identity in relation to her role as SAAS president for the past two years.

President’s Message: December 2021

SAAS President Dr. Allan Tsung discusses this year’s SAAS annual meeting, the pandemic and the future of the society in his December 2021 President’s Message.

The Sequelae of Hate

Dr. Lindsey Zhang discusses the recent rise in hate crimes, racial discrimination and violence toward the Asian American community.

A Day in Ramadan as a Surgical Trainee

Dr. Hassan Mashbar, a trauma fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital, discusses his experience with Ramadan during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Q&A: Dr. George Yang

The Lotus Scroll interviews George Yang, MD, PhD, former president of the Society of Asian Academic Surgeons.

SAAS Foundation 2018-2019 Visiting Professorships

Congratulations to the 2018-2019 SAAS Foundation Visiting Professors! SAAS Foundation Visiting Professorships support travel to host institutions for junior faculty to give grand rounds and increase the national visibility of rising stars in academic surgery.

SAAS on Twitter!

This year, SAAS was active more than ever on Twitter! In addition to updates and announcements, more content was created for our followers to improve engagement, highlight issues and events important to our society and members, and promote the activities at SAAS.

SAAS Executive Council: Message on the Rise of Racism

First, as the current pandemic continues to affect our communities and families, we want to express our profound gratitude to our surgical colleagues and to all healthcare professionals who are the frontlines of caring for patients with the SARS-CoV2 virus/COVID-19.

Q&A: Dr. Kenric Murayama

The Lotus Scroll is honored to interview Kenric Murayama, MD, this year’s host of the SAAS Annual Meeting.

Resident’s Corner: Work in the Time of Coronavirus

Sterile technique has leaked into the public domain, marked not only by how expensive Purell has become or how frequently we are reminded to wash our hands, but also by the ways we have come to treat one another.

President’s Message: December 2019

SAAS President Dr. Tracy Wang discusses how far the Society has come and what’s in store for 2020 in her December 2019 President’s Message.

SAAS 2019 Meeting Recap

SAAS held its 2019 Annual Meeting at the Boston Medical Center, Sept. 26-27, with more than 148 scientific presentations and breakout sessions.

SAAS 2019 Meeting Highlights

The fourth annual meeting of the Society of Asian Academic Surgeons will be held in Boston, Massachusetts, Sept. 26-27, 2019, and promises to be an incredibly fun, impactful and meaningful gathering of academic surgeons, trainees and students from both the U.S. and abroad.

Q&A: Dr. Jennifer Tseng

Jennifer Tseng, MD, MPH, is the James Utley Professor and Chair of the Department of Surgery at Boston University School of Medicine and surgeon-in-chief at Boston Medical Center.

Welcome to the Lotus Scroll

Welcome to the launch of Lotus Scroll, the official newsletter of the Society of Asian Academic Surgeons (SAAS). Through the Lotus Scroll, we are excited to distribute and enhance the vision of SAAS: to promote diversity and inclusion in academic surgery through the sponsorship and development of its leaders.