On behalf of the EMUGs central council we would like to update you on what has been happening across our community recently.
The past 18 months has seen a lot of change in the organisation as we moved to a more efficient & streamlined governance and administration structure by incorporating all the regions into one body and with the formation of a central council (board of directors) to support our operations team in their roles. This has been a massive undertaking and we would like to acknowledge the work done by our operations support team: Stacey and Romy; the interim board in particular Dr Allan Whitehead and all those who advised and supported the team in this transition.
We have exciting times ahead over the next 12 months as we can now focus our energy on further promoting the use of ultrasound across our network of clinicians through our events and collaborative networks such as our clinical leaders and research network. We are also continuing to advocate for POCUS education and training through our close partnerships with ACEM and ASUM.
Our Regional Teams are the heart and soul of EMUGs and are an important link to the EMUGs community. Many of our teams have recently undergone a refresh with new co-chairs in most states and a number of new members joining regional committees. This is a deliberate focus of the council to prevent volunteer burnout and ensure we are continuing to bring our community innovative and fresh events. Many of our board members have been co-chairs and are also currently on regional committees and along with our operations team are available to answer any questions, provide support and help out with the regional events. If you have a passion for POCUS and would like to volunteer for to be on a regional committee then approach your regional co-chair or email our ops team who will point you in the right direction.
Already this year we have run a number of successful workshops, educational meetings and clinical leaders meetings across Australia and New Zealand. After 6 months planning and establishing its team, the first South Australian EMUGs event was held in April and was well received by all those who attended. We have many more events planned throughout the year including our Central Clinical Leaders Meeting in Melbourne on 5 September (coinciding with the WFUMB Conference).
This all leads into our major event for the year:
Our Inaugural Conference will be held in Noosa on 21-23 March.
The organisers have taken all the lessons learnt from our previous events and workshops to ensure a fantastic conference program with a 50:50 split between interesting lectures and hands on workshops and the location is amazing!
Finally we’d like to thank everyone who has volunteered their time, attended our events and our amazing sponsors. Without you all we would not be able to have such a thriving group of talented and passionate clinicians. We are really excited about the upcoming 12 months as we continue to innovate, adapt to our community’s needs and promote POCUS to the masses.
See you in Noosa!
Dr Luke Phillips and Dr Mark Rewi
EMUGs Central Council Co-Chairs
EMERGENCY PHYSICIAN BASS COAST HEALTH
CCPU (OTAGO) CCPU (ASUM)
A bit about Cris Professionally
Cris went to medical school in England, worked in various hospitals across UK/ Australia /NZ, but completed her FACEM training in New Zealand. She completed her ASUM DDU in 2018.
She is now working at Waikato Hospital, New Zealand, as a FACEM and Clinical Lead of Ultrasound, which takes up much of her Non-clinical time. She is also a Co-Chair for EMUGs New Zealand.
Getting involved with EMUGs
Cris attended the very first EMUGs meeting in New Zealand set up by Brian O’Connell, which she heard about through an advert in the ACEM bulletin. At the time she was a DDU student and found the meeting to be a great networking event. She found it valuable to hear what others were doing in other departments.
She took a small hiatus to have a baby (number 4!) and complete her DDU exams before volunteering to be actively involved as one of EMUG New Zealand’s Co-Chairs.
Cris has contributed an enormous amount to EMUGs and its mission to date but feels that she gets just as much out of it…
For Cris, getting involved with running and teaching workshops has been good experience and she enjoys the networking and collaborating with other departments.
As her role at Waikato Hospital is new, she has found it valuable to network and borrow and adapt others ideas. She believes it’s the sharing resources that is really important as some departments are further along with US leadership that others.
Cris says that being a Co-Chair for EMUGs New Zealand has been an expansive role involving everything from checking financial accounts to presenting talks, running workshops, organising events and “bugging others to do things.” "There is lots of liaison, teamwork and collaboration. It’s important to be engaged and contribute by providing direction and advise where needed and keep the momentum and enthusiasm going.
EMUGs events give me a break from my children and a chance to talk to grown ups and eat dinner without someone putting Weetabix in my hair!
Ultrasound scanning was a good focus for me whilst on maternity leave, as it was something I could still do when clinical work got too tiring. Doing my DDU exam whilst on maternity leave was a good way to keep my brain kicking over.”
What drives the POCUS Passion
“We have all had a patient or two where POCUS has saved a life or made a massive difference.
Recently I had a lady arrest on me in the resus room. We assumed she had a PE, as she was undergoing chemotherapy, but it turned out she had ruptured her mitral valve from endocarditis, which we picked up with echo.
I have had trainees pick up ruptured ectopic pregnancies in the middle of the night, which I’ve taught them to do - makes me so proud! Ultrasound is infectious - it spreads like the flu!”
Favourite Travel Destination
Thailand - its a happy cheerful place and its beautiful.
Cris’s Vision for EMUGs
To remain a clinical support and collaborative network helping each department bring their US game higher throughout Australia and New Zealand.
Other than EMUGs
Cris has 4 kids (1,4,7 & 9) and loves the beach, running, and good food and wine with friends.
Cris’s Message for Those Contemplating Getting Involved
“Come to a meeting and give us a go. Join the Community WhatsApp group to get some ideas and see what we are all about. We are a big friendly group of people and you are welcome.”
This weekend in Rotorua, EMUGs New Zealand did their bit towards progressing the use of ultrasound in Emergency Medicine ahead of the ACEM Winter Symposium, that is currently underway.
The two day event kicked off with Sunday's, AAA & eFAST basic scanning workshop that saw a fresh group of keen ultrasound docs pic up the probe and brush up on their skills under the guidance of our amazing team of experienced volunteer practitioners. Thanks to Dr Cris Zollo, Dr Mick Kileen, Dr Phil Young, Dr Gaynor Prince and Dr Phil Young from the EMUGs Team and a special thanks to our two sonographers Rachel Heslop and Emma Woodrow-Smith from Waikato Hospital for your expert guidance.
Monday’s Clinical Leaders Meeting was a productive gathering of passionate POCUS professionals actively collaborating to advance the practice of point-of-care ultrasound in their departments. We were especially excited to have a representative from ACEM join the meeting to continue the ongoing dialogue between our organisations.
Thank you to our sponsors GE, Sonosite and Phillips who we could not exist without. We were all privileged to have the opportunity to play with the latest in machine technology and brush up on our IV access skills with chicken breasts and olives!
Stay tuned for EMUGs New Zealand's upcoming event dates being announced soon.
If you would like to join the EMUGs New Zealand volunteer team, get in touch. We love new faces.
Blogs are written by our EMUGs Team from across Australasia.