CHICAGO – Susan R. Bailey, M.D., an allergist from Fort Worth, was sworn in today as the 175th president of the American Medical Association (AMA), the nation’s premier physician organization. Dr. Bailey is the third consecutive woman to hold the office – a first for the AMA. Sworn in remotely during a virtual Special Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates, Dr. Bailey spoke about her own journey in medicine and the AMA’s strategic efforts to remove obstacles that interfere with patient care; drive the future of medicine to tackle the biggest challenges in health care; and improve the health of the nation by leading the charge to prevent chronic disease and confront health crises.

Prepared text of Dr. Bailey’s inaugural address is available by clicking here.

“Our journey in medicine is simple: Let doctors be doctors,” Dr. Bailey said in her inaugural address. “After more than 30 years in a small, private practice, I am a passionate defender of the independent physician, and, like the AMA, I’m determined to remove all those obstacles that have come between us and our patients. Insurers and government mandates…Burnout and physician suicide. And the coronavirus pandemic has made all of these problems more acute.

“At times I fear that our nation’s dysfunctional health system is held together only by the oath that we take when we graduate medical school – the pledge to always put the needs and interests of our patients first. Whether you took the Hippocratic Oath or, as in my case, recited the Prayer of Maimonides, these words demonstrate our loyalty to public service, to the pursuit of science and knowledge. These words bring purpose and meaning to our work, elevating it from a vocation to a profession.”

Dr. Bailey is an allergist in private practice, and has been with Fort Worth Allergy and Asthma Associates for more than 30 years.

First elected to the AMA Board of Trustees in 2011, Dr. Bailey served as vice-speaker and speaker of the House of Delegates, the AMA’s primary policy-making body. Dr. Bailey has held numerous leadership positions at the AMA over the years including two terms on the AMA Council on Medical Education, culminating as chair of this influential advisory council. She was a member of the AMA’s Advisory Panel to the Women in Medicine Project and the AMA’s Ad Hoc Committee on Women Physicians, the precursors to today’s AMA Women Physicians Section. Dr. Bailey also has represented the AMA in the American Board of Medical Specialties Assembly, the board of directors of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, and currently serves on the board of directors of COLA, a national laboratory accreditation organization. Dr. Bailey has been active in the AMA since medical school when she served as chair of the AMA Medical Student Section.

Prior to becoming an AMA officer, Dr. Bailey served as president of both the Texas Medical Association and Tarrant County Medical Society. She also served as vice speaker and speaker of the more than 500-member Texas Medical Association House of Delegates as well as for the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology House of Delegates.

An honor graduate of Texas A&M University College of Medicine, Dr. Bailey was the first female Texas A&M graduate to become a regent for the Texas A&M University System and has been recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus of Texas A&M University as well as the College of Medicine.

She completed her residency and fellowship training at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine and is certified by the American Board of Pediatrics and the American Board of Allergy and Immunology, and is a distinguished fellow of the American College of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology.

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Robert J. Mills

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About the American Medical Association

The American Medical Association is the physicians’ powerful ally in patient care. As the only medical association that convenes 190+ state and specialty medical societies and other critical stakeholders, the AMA represents physicians with a unified voice to all key players in health care.  The AMA leverages its strength by removing the obstacles that interfere with patient care, leading the charge to prevent chronic disease and confront public health crises and, driving the future of medicine to tackle the biggest challenges in health care.

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