Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Hillary Clinton's Physician Does Not Participate in MOC

In case anyone cares, Lisa R, Bardack, MD, reportedly Hillary Clinton's personal physician who issued a letter in 2015 concerning Ms. Clinton's fitness to run for President of the United States, does not participate in the American Board of Medical Specialties' Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program:

(Click to enlarge)



Sunday, August 14, 2016

American College of Physicians Stands By ABIM MOC Program

Like the co-dependent spouse of a raging alcoholic, the American College of Physicians (ACP) continues to support the completely corrupt and untrustworthy American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program.

In a carefully crafted e-mail to its members, Steven E. Weinberger, MD, Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of the ACP recently stated:
"We're aware that serious concerns remain about issues related to MOC, expressed most recently in a statement of no confidence in ABIM by the Pennsylvania Medical Society, ACP, along with others, was asked to sign on to the statement. We chose not to because we believe the ACP should continue to press ABIM to improve the MOC process as quickly as possible to make it more relevant, efficient, valuable, and affordable to internal medicine specialists and subspecialists. Although we understand and respect the concerns of the PA Medical Society and others, ACP's priority is improving the process by which physicians demonstrate ongoing competence, and we believe we can have the greatest impact by taking a collaborative approach to making change rather than getting involved in other aspects about ABIM as an organization."
Despite the exposed corruption, illegal lobbying, financial malfeasance, strongman tactics, conflicts of interest, and illegal research performed on physicians for monetary gain, the ACP still choose to side with the Medical Industrial Complex rather than practicing physicians. Rather than siding with their own senior members who are Masters of the ACP, (i.e., Charles Culter, MD, MACP, who has been a outspoken critic and well-respected leader in exposing the ACP's own conflicted role in the physician education and credentialing cartel, among others), the ACP basically is telling their own membership they know what's best for them: MOC.

Then, like a frog leaping from the boiling bath of physician discontent regarding the corrupt and financially-conflicted ABIM MOC program, Dr. Weinberger (like Christine Cassel, MD, former President and CEO of the ABIM) decides to split and toss the MOC controversy hot potato to his successor, Dr. Darilyn Moyer:
"As many of you know, I am retiring from my position as ACP's Executive Vice President and CEO after Labor Day. At that time, I am delighted to turn over this responsibility to ACP's new EVP/CEO, Dr. Darilyn Moyer. As Dr. Moyer takes over her new position, I know she is as committed as I have been to seeing this process to a successful conclusion. Further updates will be coming from Dr. Moyer, but I will assist her as needed over the coming year as part of my interest and responsibility in assuring a smooth and seamless transition process."
Rest assured ACP members will remember Dr. Weinberger's "interest and responsibility" for supporting the MOC program. I encourage as many ACP physician members as possible to no longer renew your membership with the organization.

After all, it is now clear that the ACP is more about the ACP than its members' real concerns.

That's because their new "ACP Practice Advisor offers three new modules (author's note: for a price, of course) that (1) address key attributes and expectations of patient-centered medical homes, (2) are aligned with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation's Transforming Practice Initiative and the proposed MACRA rule, and (3) are eligible for CME credit and MOC points."

It's so sad to see that integrity, honesty, and financial transparency in our physician specialty societies are now officially being supplanted by little more than corporate greed as they abandon their responsibility to their members in favor of the virtually unlimited fees they can impose on their membership in the name of "health care reform."


Thursday, August 04, 2016

ABIM Foundation: "Co-creating" Healthcare?

Should the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation be using our testing fees to "co-create" healthcare?

Here is what "cocreation" in action looks like:

As seen on Twitter

(Note the comfy chairs, uplit curtains, and microphones, all provided at ABIM diplomat expense). Real practicing physicians understand that words "co-create" are little more than corporate marketing-speak. Worse still, when the term "cocreation" is being used by members of the ABIM Foundation that has received a majority of funding from ABIM diplomat Board certification and re-certification fees, we see the breadth and depth of just how out of touch this organization is to the challenges practicing physicians face as they try to deliver real health care in America today.

Should front line practicing physicians be funding such waste? What the heck is the ABIM Foundation really for other than forwarding some perverted social agenda? Are they so flush with cash that they feel moved to hold expensive small group sessions with members of the insurance industry? Seriously? How is this helping patients? How is this helping our residents who can't afford the current testing fees at the ABIM?

Here is just a smapling of what just transpired at this year's ABIM Foundation 2016 Forum (just search hashtag #ABIMF2016 on Twitter to see what I mean):
  • A plug for rethinkhealth.org, a website for "dynamic modeling and strategy" funded by the Fannie E. Rippel Foundation, a $35-million financial conglomerate that issues selective grants to "organizations or individuals with whom we have developed partnerships or who we have identified as advancing our core initiatives." In other words, people who share their "vision" for corporate health care, like the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
  • A "Human Diagnosis Project" that promised "crowdsourcing will enable us to solve medical problems." (Seriously?)
  • "Health raising" (whatever that is) with multi-colored uninterpretable charts (More gobbledegook)
  • Don Berwick "discussing the complexity and imperative of co-creation in healthcare"
  • And my favorite: "Clinicians/dieticians... try NG tube on themselves(!) as part of cocreation:"
"Co-creating" NG tube placement?
The ABIM Foundation is not about physician credentialing and patient safety and care quality. On the contrary, the ABIM Foundation is spending physicians' hard-earned fees on wooing idealistic health care fluff.

No wonder the real ABIM Maintenance of Certification program and its myriad of conflicts has never been shown to benefit patient care quality or physician outcomes.

They're too busy wasting our money on themselves.


Tuesday, August 02, 2016

Class Action Lawsuit Filed Against the American Osteopathic Association

From the Philadelphia Business Journal:
A group of osteopathic doctors have filed a class-action lawsuit against the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) seeking to recover millions of dollars in annual membership fees that the doctors allege they have been forced to pay for years to the organization.

The money, according to their complaint, is paid as a condition of obtaining and maintaining physicians’ board certification in any advanced medical specialty. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Camden, N.J., contends the requirement that they purchase memberships is illegal, has no reasonable connection to the advanced certification and violates the antitrust laws.
The AOA forces hefty annual membership fees to the paid to "maintain certification" and the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) assures fee payments to themselves by changing lifetime "board certification" to a time-limited credential without proof of patient benefit - both are variations on the same monetary theme.

This new class action suit adds to the politically-connected Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME)'s growing "Maintenance of Certification" headache. First, it was the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) with their 24 member boards (including the ABIM) having an antitrust lawsuit filed against them. Now, its another member of the ACGME, the AOA, seeing similar legal action.

Who will be next?

When more details of this corrupt "Maintenance of Certification" program surface, I suspect there will be many more lawsuits. No wonder the ABIM Foundation moved $6.5 million of ABIM diplomat's assets offshore to the Cayman Islands: legal battles.