executive director's message

The Single Accreditation System Continues to be a Challenge

Dr. Vander LugtBy Lee Vander Lugt, DO, FAOAO

The Thanksgiving Holiday is behind us and before we know it Christmas and New Year’s Day will be here!  I hope all of you had a successful and productive year, both professionally and personally in 2015.  I wish each of you a Happy and Prosperous 2016!

I want to thank all of you who helped make our Annual Meeting at The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs a huge success.  We experienced record attendance and exceptional clinical lectures and scientific sessions. 

One area of concern is the recent decrease in support from industry in the form of exhibits and grants.  The Board is aware that this is a profession wide concern and is looking at ways to incentivize our supporters.  Please let your local representatives know that the Academy appreciates their support and ask them to pass that appreciation up the corporate ladder.

The Single Accreditation System continues to be a challenge for our residency training programs.  As of this writing, 10 of our 42 training programs are in pre-accreditation and one is working on an affiliation agreement with an existing ACGME program.  This process has not been easy for our program directors and their staff.  The application process is long and tedious.  The Milestone Workshop at the recent Annual Meeting was well attended and very beneficial to help understand the process. 

The ACGME, and specifically the Orthopaedic Review Committee, has made it very clear in verbal statements that their goal is to have all our programs succeed in this new system.  I want to thank Pam Derstine, PhD, Executive Director of the Orthopaedic Review Committee for all the personal help she has given to our program directors. Recent proposed changes to the AOA standards have increased the pressure on our programs to have their application in by January 1, 2016.

As this process moves forward, six of our programs have joined the Council of Orthopaedic Residency directors (CORD).  This group is under the direction of the American Orthopaedic Association.  The mission of CORD is to “provide a forum for leaders of orthopaedic programs to exchange best practices, tasks, and ideas about residency education.”  Tom Baker, DO and Jeff Cochran, DO have been appointed to their program planning committee.  One area of focus for CORD is establishment of a national orthopedic residency curriculum aimed at providing a firm foundation in “general orthopedics” prior to sub specialty training.  We were pleased to have Elizabeth Ames, MD, chair of CORD, at our Annual Meeting.  Her input at the Milestones Workshop was very valuable.  She also had the opportunity to interact with our program directors and learn firsthand about the osteopathic model for residency training.

The end of the current CME cycle is very near - December 31, 2015.  If you have not yet completed your Osteopathic Continuous Certification (OCC) process, by all means call the AOBOS or go to their website,  www.AOBOS.org soon.  If you do not complete this process you will be deemed not compliant with OCC, and the ramifications of that are significant.  Please take time now to complete the process.

Thanks to all of you who serve on the various committees of the Academy.  Your volunteer work is greatly appreciated.  I look forward to seeing many of you at the 56th Postgraduate Seminar in Phoenix, April 8 – 10, 2016.

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