Tuesday, July 31, 2012

amednews.com: Physician quality: What’s age got to do with it?

In the name of patient safety, some hospitals require that senior physicians get a fitness-for-duty evaluation as a condition of medical staff privileges.

Kevin B. O'Reilly, July 30, 2012                                              

Slowly, but surely, Norman Dunitz, MD, discovered the limitations that age placed on his ability to safely practice as an orthopedic surgeon in Tulsa, Okla. As he neared 70, he took fewer cases as a lead surgeon and started assisting on more procedures led by his colleagues.

In his later 70s, Dr. Dunitz gave up surgery entirely due to the physical toll it took.

“My eyesight, my coordination was not as good. I felt pretty good, but I felt the time had come to stop,” he said.

“Surgery was harder in the sense that we’d operate into the late afternoon,” he said. “I’d be more tired in the evening and have muscle cramps after being on my feet all day. I was just obviously not as physically able as I was 10 years before. … It was a warning to me that I was trying to do too much.”

Read the rest here.

Friday, July 27, 2012

NABP: Pharmacist Prescribing: Is Collaborative Practice a Path of the Future?

July 18, 2012

As policymakers and other stakeholders continue debating how to best balance affordable health care and patient access, they are increasingly looking to expand the role pharmacists play in patient care. Numerous factors, including rising health care costs, a longer-living population, and increased reliance on pharmacotherapy, as well as advances in pharmaceutical and biomedical research, increased minimum educational standards for pharmacists entering the workforce, and the shortage of primary care practitioners are encouraging a re-examination of the role pharmacists play in the provision of health care.

Read the rest here.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pilot Advances ECFMG’s Efforts to Stimulate International Accreditation

July 5, 2012

In September 2010, ECFMG announced that, effective in 2023, physicians applying for ECFMG Certification will be required to graduate from a medical school that has been appropriately accredited. To satisfy this requirement, the physician’s medical school must be accredited through a formal process that uses criteria comparable to those established by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) or other globally accepted criteria, such as those put forth by the World Federation for Medical Education (WFME). ECFMG believes that this additional requirement for ECFMG Certification will stimulate the development of a meaningful, universally accepted system of accreditation for undergraduate medical education outside the United States and Canada.

Read the rest here.

Monday, July 23, 2012

BNA: Multiple Medical Groups Back Guidelines From AMA on Doctor Performance Reports

Mindy Yochelson

Dozens of physician groups are behind an American Medical Association effort to standardize performance data reports that doctors receive from health insurers, AMA said July 16.

AMA released a list of more than 60 groups -- mostly specialty organizations and state medical societies -- that support guidelines AMA developed for physician profiling. CIGNA Healthcare, BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee, DakotaCare, and the Midwest Business Group on Health were among the signatories.

Contact BNA for the full story.

Monday, July 16, 2012

FSMB Celebrating 100 Years

On July 14, 1913, the New York Times reported on the creation of FSMB: "The chief functions of these State Boards are to decide upon the qualifications to be required in aspirants for the right to practice medicine, to see that none do practice it without the fixed minimum of knowledge and experience, and to encourage or suppress medical schools according to whether or not they provide reasonably adequate facilities for their students."

The FSMB is celebrating its Centennial in 2012. For more information about the history of FSMB and medical regulation, please visit its Centennial website.

Friday, July 13, 2012

The Joint Commission's Standards FAQ Details for the Use of Unlicensed Persons Acting as Scribes

Q. What is a scribe and how are they used?

A. A scribe is an unlicensed person hired to enter information into the electronic medical record (EMR) or chart at the direction of a physician or practitioner (Licensed Independent Practitioner, Advanced Practice Registered Nurse or Physician Assistant). It is the Joint Commission’s stand that the scribe does not and may not act independently but can document the previously determined physician’s or practitioner’s dictation and/or activities.

Scribes also assist the practitioners listed above in navigating the EMR and in locating information such as test results and lab results. They can support work flow and documentation for medical record coding.

Scribes are used most frequently, but not exclusively, in emergency departments where they accompany the physician or practitioner and record information into the medical record, with the goal of allowing the physician or practitioner to spend more time with the patient and have accurate documentation. Scribes are sometimes used in other areas of the hospital or ambulatory facility. They can be employed by the healthcare organization, the physician or practitioner or be a contracted service.

Read the rest of the FAQs here.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

The Joint Commission's Standards FAQ details for non-licensed, non-employee individuals in health care organizations

The Joint Commission, similar to organization’s themselves, has expectations regarding anyone entering a health care organization.  In order to maintain patient safety, accredited health care organizations need to be aware of who is entering the organization and their purpose at the organization (EC.02.01.01, EP 7).  Accredited health care organization leaders need to also make sure they oversee operations and that responsibilities are assigned for administrative and clinical direction of programs, services, sites, and departments (LD.04.01.05, EPs 1 and 3); this includes processes for knowing who is entering the organization and their purpose.

Read the rest here.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

AMA: Don’t make licensure dependent on board certification

Delegates adopt policy urging medical boards to establish flexible medical license requirements that benefit — and don’t harm — physicians.

Carolyne Krupa, amednews. July 2, 2012.

For years, the Federation of State Medical Boards and individual medical boards nationwide have been developing new standards for maintenance of licensure. Many physicians are concerned that those requirements could create undue burdens of time and money on doctors and duplicate what they already do to maintain board certification.

The American Medical Association wants to ensure that those mandates don’t become burdensome and says no doctor should be barred from practice for not keeping up with board-certification requirements, according to policies adopted at the AMA Annual Meeting.

Read more here.

Monday, July 2, 2012

AAMC Publishes Study on Causes of Bad Physician Behavior

Perspective: A Culture of Respect, Part 1: The Nature and Causes of Disrespectful Behavior by Physicians

Lucian L. Leape MD, et al.
July 2012

A substantial barrier to progress in patient safety is a dysfunctional culture rooted in widespread disrespect. The authors identify a broad range of disrespectful conduct, suggesting six categories for classifying disrespectful behavior in the health care setting: disruptive behavior; humiliating, demeaning treatment of nurses, residents, and students; passive-aggressive behavior; passive disrespect; dismissive treatment of patients; and systemic disrespect.

At one end of the spectrum, a single disruptive physician can poison the atmosphere of an entire unit. More common are everyday humiliations of nurses and physicians in training, as well as passive resistance to collaboration and change. Even more common are lesser degrees of disrespectful conduct toward patients that are taken for granted and not recognized by health workers as disrespectful.

Click here for the full article.