Affinity Groups

Women in Medicine Early Career Physicians Independent Physicians Rural Medicine Emeritus Section


Women in Medicine

The Women in Medicine section was WCMS' first Affinity Group and remains very popular.  All female physician members are invited to participate.  Women in Medicine (WIM) meets quarterly at various venues (local restaurants, physicians' homes, etc).  WIM_2015-cropped.jpgThe purpose of WIM is to help female physicians connect with each other, enjoy a time of collegiality/networking and discuss relevant content to women in the practice of medicine. 

Some past topics of WIM gatherings include:
  • Women in LeadershipMullendore-Hicks-Vo-Pekal.jpg
  • Financial Goals and How to Get There
  • "Ask the Expert" on healthcare law
  • Advocating for Women's Health

Dr. Samantha Read-Smith, Hospitalist with Asheville Hospitalist Group, is the physician champion for the Women in Medicine Affinity Group. 

Check out our calendar to find out when the next WIM event will be. 

Early Career Physicians

The WCMS Early Career Physicians' Section is an Affinity Group that provides networking opportunities for WNC physicians who have been practicing for 10 years or less. Residents, fellows and medical students are also invited.  The Early Career group is a great way to meet other physicians in a similar demographic in a fun and relaxing atmosphere.  Early Career physicians meet quarterly at a different location to hangout and socialize.
Past Early Career venues include:
  • Wicked Weed Brewing
  • Urban Orchard Cider Co. and Bar
  • Catawba Brewing Co.
  • Thirsty Monk South
The Physician Champion for WCMS' Early Career Affinity Group is Dr. Mary Shell Zaffino, a family physician with Blue Ridge Community Health Services in Hendersonville. 
Check out our calendar to find out when the next Early Career event will be.


Independent Physicians

WCMS's newest Affinity Group is for Independent Physicians: any physician helping to run their practice (not directly employed by a hospital or government practice).  This Affinity Group provides a chance for independent physicians to network together, share ideas and learn about content pertinent to their niche of medical practice. 
This Affinity Group launched in December 2014 and so far has focused the educational content on issues regarding Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) and Clinically Integrated Networks (CINs) and their impact in Western North Carolina.  Independent Physicians meet quarterly at locations around the region.
There are co-champions for the Independent Physician group that help guide the content for events.  Drs. Gus Wilde, family physician at Franklin Family Practice, and Mark McNeill, a Family Medicine physician in private practice at Trillium Family Medicine.
Check out our calendar to find out when the next Independent Physicians event will be.


Rural Medicine

Rural-Med-Affinity-Group.jpgThe Rural Medicine Affinity Group is very active and draws rural physicians from the 16 counties of WNC. See letter from Kate Queen, MD, for background regarding this strategic initiative. The Rural Medicine Affinity Group’s interests include recruitment and retention, access to care, innovative practices, communications, collaboration, and training in rural WNC. The group has agreed to use WCMS as a hub for communications, think tank, grant proposals, grant management, and new non-traditional partnerships for rural medicine docs. Medical students and residents are always welcome to learn more about rural medicine from those in practice. Meetings take place in various counties outside of Buncombe.


Emeritus Group

The WCMS Emeritus Chapter provides retired physicians in Western NC opportunities to network, stay in touch with one another, and with the medical community at-large.
The Emeritus Chapter conducts quarterly lunch meetings in the Asheville area with programs provided by local physicians and leaders in the medical and healthcare community. 

Some past topics of Emeritus luncheons include:

  • ACOs and Population Health: A Brave New World
  • 3D Mammography and Other Issues in Breast Screening
  • Medical Missions and Public Health in Africa
  • Robotic Surgery
Check out our calendar to find out when the next Emeritus luncheon will be or contact an Association staff member for more information.