Sunday, December 31, 2017

ABMS/ABIM MOC Controversy: 2017 Year-in-Review

As we say goodbye to 2017, we say goodbye to a year of unprecedented exposure of the interconnected workings of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education and its member organizations, the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), the American Medical Association (ABMS), the American Hospital Association (AHA), the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), and the Council of Medical Subspecialty Societies (CMSS)  that continue to ignore the corruption inside their walls.

Money does that to people. We should not be surprised.

In keeping with the reviews from 2015 and 2016, here is the wrap-up of some of  key events concerning Maintenance of Certification® (MOC®) for 2017:

4 January 2017 - Richard Baron, MD and Clarence H. Braddock,  III, MD publish a promotional article for ABIM in the New England Journal of Medicine and given the comments, probably wish they hadn't.

20 January 2017 - Stationary sidebars can be revealing: The interconnected conflicts of interest with University of California, San Francisco, MOC®, the New England Journal of Medicine, and the ABIM/ABIM Foundation are disclosed.

6 February 2017 - Practicing Physicians of America, Inc is born and requests IRS investigation of the ABIM at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC.

6 February 2017 - TeamHealth eats the Department of Justice's $60 million judgment for Medicare fraud, but is swallowed quietly by Blackstone Group.

17 March 2017 - Federal judge dismissed ABIM's copyright infringement suit against Puerto Rican Dr. Salas Rushford. Salas Rushford's countersuit to proceed.

21 March 2017 - Wallstreet lawyer attempts to attack the integrity of the investigative reporting on this blog concerning the ABIM's Director of Test Security. Rebuttal appears in Pennsylvania Medicine Magazine and becomes the most read blog post of 2017 thanks to the Streisand Effect.

31 March 2017 - ABIM announces their much-anticipated "modifications" to their MOC program, gets it wrong again.

3 April 2017 - State legislative anti-MOC® battles continue in Tennessee

12 April 2017 - Elizabeth's Rosenthal's book An American Sickness appears on the New York Times best seller list, includes reference to the ABIM $2.3 million condo story.

29 April 2017 - The state legislative battle continued in Texas.

3 May 2017 - Journal of the American Medical Association devotes an entire issue to conflicts of interests in medicine, but forgets to disclose its own.

26 June 2017 - Antitrust suit against American Osteopathic Association is allowed to proceed to the discovery phase

30 June 2017 - Anti-MOC legislation in Texas passes with some concessions, goes into effect 1 Jan 2018.

3 July 2017 - Practicing Physicians of America, Inc starts fund drive to assist with anti-MOC legislative efforts.

1 August 2017 - Research letter detailing the costs and fees for Maintenance of Certification® appears in JAMA.

6 Aug 2017 - ABMS responds to JAMA article on MOC® costs as "crucial to sustain and evolve."
18 October 2017 - Why the IRS needs to investigate the ABIM and its numerous corporate conflicts of interest.

11 October 2017 - Ohio legislature receive my testimony and an evidence packet on anti-MOC House Bill 273 regarding the corruption of the ABIM before the Health Committee.

31 October 2017 - ABIM joins the Human Diagnosis project

4 December 2017 - A key meeting of State Medical Societies, ABMS and ABIM leadership, and numerous medical specialty societies convenes to discuss problems with MOC®; admits the MOC® process is "problematic."

13 December 2017 - ABMS and "partners" from other ACGME organizations including the AAMC and CCMS, alongside some select medical specialty societies, announce new "Vision Commission" to re-brand MOC®. More coverup seems inevitable.

13 December 2017 - Federal judge in the Northern District of Illinois dismisses the antitrust suit by the AAPS against the ABMS using a curious timeline, but leaves a door open to "file an amended complaint that cures the deficiencies discussed in this Memorandum Opinion."

* * *

Today is New Year's Eve. Whether ABIM is solvent or not is uncertain. We will likely have to wait until May of 2018 to know for sure, since 501(c)(3) corporations can file a request to delay publishing of their Form 990 for Fiscal year 2017 until then. But the financial trend toward collapse of the ABIM and ABIM Foundation, legal troubles, and the unannounced closure of divisions within the ABIM, like the Division of Test Security and the Division of Policy in January 2017 give some hints to what is (and has been) going on there.

Bit by bit, real clinic doctors are making a difference in fighting MOC®. I encourage all readers of this blog to consider joining or donating to Practicing Physicians of America or to become certified by the National Board of Physicians and Surgeons to help continue this fight.

Together practicing physicians can make 2018 a successful and prosperous anti-MOC® new year for those of us on the front line of patient care.



DrTaras said...

Keep fighting the good fight in 2018!

MOCaholics Anonymous said...

A Cocktail of Corruption in America?

Insurance companies are calling the shots in America now, bleeding the system and making even more blood flow progressively in the hospitals here. It is not just happening in Russia. (See articles below.) If you want medication in Russia often times you must buy it yourself! You cannot wait for the state or the insurance company! That is a socialized medicine that was once essentially free? In the state-run institutions of today, physicians are paid by the same as in Soviet times. Pensions and salaries frozen in time at a few hundred dollars. Insurers are involve now and everyone must play games to survive in the shadows.) The government run institutions pay physicians a few hundred dollars a month and expects them to live on it. Increases in military spending cut plans to increase healthcare spending and physicians pay in Russia. Do you see where this vicious cycle is heading. Can one see the parallels here? Physician pay has not kept pace with tech, corporate positions or banking specialists as an example.

In America with prior-authorization, Choosing Wisely, and mail order mandates, etc., it is becoming almost the same here when you need attention immediately. Tests and labs are requiring the same red tape in advance. A patient that direly needs admitting or observation does not get either. One cannot work for the patient anymore. Instead of the hallways, the patients lie in bed at home. In a clinic, one can care for only half the number of patients as before. Patient care is truncated by deep red tape and endless bureaucratic click-clerk mandates. Who invented these war-period rationing tactics and countless 'bureaucratic atrocities' and why?

Do we need a prior-authorization to think for ourselves and see the truth. The rich elites and their crazed political shakers in control of most of the world do not care one bit for the lives and health of others. This should be obvious by now by all the killing, maiming and displacement involving the destruction of whole nations. Who benefits from this?

Physicians are pawns still scratching their heads at why they are not being helped. They must help themselves and think long and hard and begin to do, or they and their patients will remain in the same passive compromised mess until the end of time.

Why is MOC kept off the agenda in so many states and legislative relief written to favor the status quo of MOC and insurance companies? In benefit of large merged and merging institutions and their associations? Because physicians and politicians are passive, often blind to the facts of corporate greed, and too overburdened to do. Patients are unaware of their compromised healthcare systems. All are being led by industry shills, professional medical politicians and propaganda in order to control agenda and politics. Patients cannot do either.

MOC is part of a larger scam that needs to be totally exposed and banned. What part are we as individuals doing to fix the problem. One comment will not do. Organization, clear planning, and massive support is needed. The media is being manipulated as usual to control the flow of information.

Dire state of Russian health care (Newsweek 2016). Corrupt administrators and insurers have only made it worse in 2017.

Fiction in action@.pdf

Healthcare was bad in the Soviet Union, but many say it was much better and shortages were no as profound.

Dee said...

This year-in-review is only a scratch on the surface of corruption involving the ABIM MOC gang and the ABMS.

Anonymous said...

Medical science died when the ABMS became corrupt beyond recognition.

The ABIM became corrupt beyond repair when they trammeled the constitution and bill of rights among hundreds of other things.

UpToDate executives and their paid-for physicians became prostitutes for "the industry" when WoltersKluwer bought them out. (UpToDate owns a piece of the testing market now and the question pool. Who controls WoltersKluwer?

ABIM, ACGME and ABMS, corrupt beyond fixing, now fixes 'the games' for the healthcare industry and their business partners such as Pearson PLC, WoltersKluwer, Elsevier, big pharma, the major insurers, and their paid lobbyists in DC and elsewhere around the globe.

The AMA and ACP, parent organiztions of the ABIM/ABMS, helps by pulling the political strings, providing lucrative executive jobs for 'political revolvers' and direct funding. They publish propaganda along with their friends at the NEJM.

All are in the lucrative business of quality assurance, political control and data collection. They all keep files on physicians denying them the right to privacy, the right to be left out of their highly commercialized/profitable profiles. Physicians do not have, nor can they exercise such rights as privacy or "the right to be forgotten".

Anonymous said...

The ABMS does NOTHING to protect its Board Certified physicians from state medical boards, DEA, law enforcement from using ANY doctor as a medical expert. For example, the MBC, DEA and several law enforcement agencies use Dr. Tim Munzing (Anaheim, CA) who has absolutely zero formal pain management/pain medicine training as a "medical expert" in pain management related criminal cases.