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SGIM21 Plenary Speakers Focus on Healthcare and Health Equity Leadership

 , March 19, 2021

The Society of General Internal Medicine will be hosting its 2021 Annual Meeting April 20-23, 2021 virtually. This year’s theme, Transforming Values into Action, highlights the strengths, values, and impact of leadership within General Internal Medicine. General internists play a unique role in leading from multiple perspectives – and this commitment and action move physicians and patients toward health and health equity. Generalists at all levels of training have the opportunity to choose actions on a day-to-day basis that represent our values and those of our communities and institutions. In a fragmented, uncertain world, we each lead in our own way and unite for the common good through research, medical education, advocacy, and exemplary clinical care.

SGIM’s presenters are doctors and other health care professionals responsible for teaching general internal medicine to the next generation of physicians. Most combine teaching with taking care of patients in clinical practices and/or research about medical treatment. For more information on SGIM, to register as press, or for a schedule of the events, please visit

Tuesday, April 20 (11:00am – 12:10pm EDT)

Fawn Lopez
Publisher & Vice President, Modern Healthcare
Leading through Values: From Lessons of the Pandemic to Leadership Shifts for the Next Normal
The Covid-19 pandemic put a spotlight on our strength and capacity to lead through an unprecedented crisis and into the next normal. A new brand of leader has emerged to tackle the trends poised to reshape healthcare—from virtual care, remote medicine, and hospital at home, to quality, access and closing the health gaps of race, gender, and income. Healthcare leaders are primed to tap into a re-invigorated set of traits and skills—from consistent, reliable, fact-focused communication, empathy, and humility, to flexibility, agility, adaptability, and resilience.

Wednesday, April 21, 2021 11:00am – 12:10pm EDT

Vivian S. Lee, MD, PhD, MBA
President of Health Platforms at Verily Life Sciences
Lessons from The Long Fix: Leading the Transformation to Value
The US health care system costs two to three times as much as other high-income nations and yet health outcomes in the country fall short. The transformation to rewarding and delivering better outcomes at lower costs is a journey the US has embarked on that needs to be accelerated. Dr. Lee will discuss the lessons from her recent, highly acclaimed book, The Long Fix: Solving America's Health Care Crisis with Strategies that Work for Everyone that includes the roles of digital health to engage people in the co-production of their health, tools for leading health system transformation, and lessons for payers, including employers.

Thursday, April 22, 2021 11:00am – 12:10pm EDT
2021 Malcolm L. Peterson Honor Lecture

Dayna Bowen Matthew, JD, PhD
Dean of the George Washington University Law School
Realizing True Health Equity- An Equal Opportunity To Be Healthy For All
The third Principle of Medical Ethics states "a physician shall respect the law and also recognize a responsibility to seek changes in those requirements which are contrary to the best interests of the patient." This presentation will posit that inequality, and the laws that ensure inequality are the number one threat to patient health and well-being in America. Therefore, this presentation will argue that the most unappreciated responsibility of physicians is to participate in eradicating inequality under the law. The evidence to support this position will include morbidity and mortality data from the deadly SARS-CoV-2 virus as well as our national track record for limiting its spread to date. These data demonstrate how important, even indispensable physicians and all members of the health professions are to realizing true health equity in our country.

Friday, April 23, 2021 11:00am – 12:10pm EDT

LaShyra “Lash” Nolen
Second-year medical student at Harvard Medical School, student body president, the first documented Black woman to serve in this leadership role
It's Never Too Early to Become an Agent for Change
In this presentation Lash Nolen—the first Black women to become student council president at Harvard Medical School--will draw on her experiences as a student leader to demonstrate the ways health professionals can create meaningful change for our communities through intentional leadership, social media, writing, and community activism.

The Society of General Internal Medicine is a member-based international medical association of 3,000 of the world's leading academic general internists, who are dedicated to improving access to care for vulnerable populations, eliminating health care disparities and enhancing medical education. SGIM strives to be the professional home for innovators and scholars in academic general internal medicine leading the way to better health for everyone. The members of the Society advance the practice of medicine through their commitment to providing comprehensive, coordinated, and cost-effective care to adults, educating the next generation of outstanding physicians, and conducting cutting-edge research to improve quality of care and clinical outcomes of all patients.

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