January 2017

Dear AODME Colleagues,

Happy New Year!

Although we are moving into the second month of 2017, we are just entering the Year of the Rooster in the Chinese Lunar Calendar. With the festivities of the holidays behind and a New Year in front, we can look forward to fresh starts and new beginnings. In a little over a week on February 6, the results of the Osteopathic National Match will be released. Hopefully, programs will match with their top candidates for the upcoming academic year.

Topics that I will cover in this letter include:
1. AODME Website’s new look
2. Webinars
3. March ACGME/ AODME Osteopathic Pre- conference
4. April AACOM/AODME joint conference schedule
5. Future of AODME

I am happy to report that the AODME website has been updated and has a new look. The AODME Enhancing Communication committee and AODME staff did an amazing job. Members are able to register on line for the April joint AACOM/AODME meeting. Click here to see our new website design!

Our webinars are continuing this year. Earlier this month we hosted “Lessons Learned from a Resident Wellness Program,” presented by Sharon Rouse, D.O. and “Resident Resilience,” presented by Kristina Sturgill, D.O.

The two webinars scheduled for February include: “Integrating an Osteopathic Curriculum into Your Residency,” presented by Sandra Snyder, D.O. and “Recognizing the Signs of Residents in Distress,” presented by Harold (Hal) Elliot, M.D. Please note that the webinars are recorded and available on the AODME website if you miss the live sessions.

Coming up soon is the March 9 Joint ACGME/AODME Osteopathic Pre-Conference in Orlando, Florida. This will be the first time that AODME has collaborated with ACGME. AOA Category 1A credit will be available for this program. The sessions will be helpful for anyone involved in the transition spectrum to ACGME accreditation- new to the process (hopefully not that many of you), and to those who have already achieved initial accreditation. Lorenzo Pence, D.O., ACGME Senior Vice-President, Osteopathic Accreditation was interviewed regarding this upcoming event. Click here for the article.

In April, the joint AACOM/AODME conference will be held in Baltimore, MD. This is an opportune time for UME and GME educators to learn about what is going on in the worlds of medical education. Please note that the AODME conference will run from Wednesday, April 26 to Friday, April 28. AODME will not have a Saturday session.

Last but not least – what is the future of AODME? With the transition to the ACGME Single Accreditation System, we are unable to continue on the path we have followed in the past. Our future is a question that both the AODME Board and membership have been asking. Last year we surveyed our membership regarding the organization. The results were presented at the last annual membership meeting. The board took the survey into consideration during our strategic planning retreat last summer and also during our monthly board meetings.

Both the AODME board and I want our members to be aware of what is going on. At this time we are having serious discussions with the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM). Our organization may not continue in its present form; however, we want what is best for the organization. We also want to continue providing value to both present and future osteopathic graduate medical educators. It should be understood that the final decision regarding AODME will be made by you, our members. There will be more information available soon.

Best of luck with the upcoming Match!

Sincerely,
Lynn Mark, DO, MA, FACOFP


 

December 2016

Dear AODME Colleagues,

Happy Holidays! I hope that everyone has managed to spend some quality time with family and friends celebrating Bodhi Day, Mawlid-an-Nabi Day, Winter Solstice, Festivus, Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or any other holiday in December that I may have missed mentioning. The end of the year is a time of reflection- where we have been, where we are and where we are going.

Earlier this year, AODME had a successful annual conference in Portland, Oregon. Everyone was able to both learn and enjoy the camaraderie of fellow osteopathic educators. During this time the AODME OPTI Council brought forth a resolution to the AODME Board concerning an alternative pathway for AOA accreditation for programs undergoing the ACGME accreditation process. The resolution, titled Alternative Pathway for AOA Accreditation for AOA Accredited Programs With Accreditation Council For Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Pre-Accreditation and Continuing Pre-Accreditation, went to the AOA Program and Trainee Review Council (PTRC) and Council on Osteopathic Postdoctoral Training (COPT), where a modified version was approved. Programs may request a postponement of their AOA inspection from their specialty college for up to two years provided they fulfill certain criteria.

AODME also presented live monthly webinars which have been archived on our website. I would like to again thank Boyd Buser, DO, Sarah James, DO, Kimberly Wolf, DO, Robert Orenstein, DO, and Tiffany Moss, MBA for their time and effort to prepare and present their webinars. If you were unable to participate in our live webinars, it is still possible to view the recordings on the AODME website. Webinar topics include: the Single Accreditation System, Scholarly Activity, AOA Board Certification and the National Match.

AODME continues to be involved with ACGME. AODME Board members are on ACGME Review Committees and AODME has become involved with the Pursuing Excellence Partner Advisory Group and Sponsoring Institution 2025 Task Force. In addition, AODME has submitted comments regarding revisions to the ACGME Common Program Requirements Sections I-V and has submitted comments to the proposed major revisions to Section VI. It is interesting to note that there are some significant proposed revisions to Section VI, which include increasing the maximum hours of clinical education and work for first-year residents from sixteen to twenty four hours.

Moving forward, in 2017 we plan to launch our new AODME website which will have a different look and will be updated with useful information on a regular basis. Our live webinars will continue. We will start 2017 with webinars on Resident Wellness. Physician wellness is a very hot topic with growing concern about physician burnout and suicide. Our first webinar will be on January 11th—“Resident Resilience”, presented by Kristina Sturgill, DO, Family Medicine Program Director, Henry Ford Allegiance Health.

We will continue to have webinars pertaining to scholarly activity and ACGME accreditation. Many Osteopathic programs are in different stages of the application process for ACGME accreditation and will continue to need assistance. Earlier this year the AOA had launched their Single Accreditation System Application Assistance Program which provides consultation services for AOA programs transitioning over to ACGME accreditation. Consultation services range from the initial application process to a mock ACGME review. There is no charge to the AOA programs for the service. Jorge “Rico” Blanco, Project Manager–Education is the contact at the AOA.

In March and April we will have our joint programs with ACGME and AACOM, respectively. Both programs will have very interesting and timely information pertaining to GME. AOA CME credit will be available for both programs. More information will be available soon.

Last but definitely not least, the AODME board has been and will continue to work on the future of our organization. This has not been an easy task.

As we end 2016, I thank the AODME Board and AODME membership for their continuing support. I look forward to AODME’s continuing collaboration with other educational organizations so as to provide our members with the tools and assistance they need for having quality programs. I encourage all members to let me know if there are any GME topics you would like to see presented as a webinar or any other educational resources that would be of assistance.

Best Wishes for a very Joyous and Healthy 2017!

Sincerely,
Lynn Mark, DO, MA, FACOFP


 

November 2016

Dear AODME Colleagues,

It has been an interesting past month, but the controversial elections are finally behind us. We will soon see what changes – if any – will be made in healthcare policy that will impact our patients, training programs and ourselves as physicians.

Besides the elections, many other events have occurred. Concerning GME, ACGME has released the first Milestones Annual Report which presents the national Milestones data for 31 specialties in an aggregate form for the July 1, 2015, to June 30, 2016, academic year. ACGME had requested comments from a number of organizations, including AODME, with regard to changes to the ACGME Common Program Requirements, Sections I-V. A response was submitted. ACGME has also invited comment on the proposed Common Program Requirements for Section VI. It is interesting to note that one of the proposed changes is to remove the 16-hour consecutive work hour restriction that is in place for first year residents only. The proposed change would raise the duty hour limit to be consistent with the requirement for upper level residents: 24 hours plus 4 hours for transition in case.

AODME continues its semimonthly webinars. This past month, Boyd Buser, D.O, President of the AOA, gave a presentation on “AOA Board Certification/The Match: Fact vs. Rumor“. Tiffany Moss, Executive Director for Osteopathic Accreditation, ACGME, gave a presentation on “Osteopathic Recognition: Understanding the Application and Common Pitfalls”.

Please note that all webinars are recorded and can be viewed if you missed the live presentation. The upcoming webinar for December will be addressing physician well-being. On Dec 15th, Harold (Hal) Elliot, MD, Program Director, Psychiatry, Henry Ford Allegiance Health, will give a presentation on “Recognizing the Signs of Residents in Distress”. There will be only one webinar given in December because of the holidays.

Concerning joint programs, the upcoming March 2017 ACGME/AODME Osteopathic Pre-Conference schedule is posted on the ACGME website. We are working on possibly obtaining AOA credit for this program. The AACOM/AODME conference schedule is being finalized. The abstracts have been reviewed and presentations are being selected.

In addition to providing services that are of value to our members, and continuing to provide joint programs with various organizations, the AODME Board continues to discuss what options will be in the best interest of the organization and the Osteopathic profession in the future.

Best wishes for very Happy Holidays to you and your families!

Sincerely,
Lynn Mark, DO, MA, FACOFP


 

October 2016

Dear AODME Colleagues,

Happy Fall!

The interview season is busily underway. Please note: AOA-accredited training programs that that require four years or more to complete training and are recruiting for the 2017-18 academic year, must submit their applications for ACGME accreditation by Dec. 31, 2016. Programs that have not achieved ACGME Accreditation or Pre-Accreditation status by December will not be allowed to participate in the AOA National Match in January 2017.

Those programs that are currently in the ACGME Pre-Accreditation or Continued Pre-Accreditation status and are due for an AOA accreditation visit may request a review postponement of up to 24 months from their specialty college, provided that the program received a five-year continuing approval on its last AOA inspection. The request for postponement must be submitted to a program’s OPTI no later than two months prior to the scheduled review. Please contact your OPTI or Ms. Maura Biszewski, Director of Postdoctoral Training, AOA for further information.

Our AODME webinars for the month of October continue to address scholarly activity. Robert Orenstein, DO – Editor-in-Chief of JAOA – presented his first webinar on scholarly activity on Oct. 11; his second presentation will take place on Oct. 25. All webinars are recorded and available on the AODME website.

Webinars are also being planned for November. On November 17, Tiffany Moss – Executive Director, ACGME Osteopathic Practice and Principles Committee – will present Osteopathic Recognition: Understanding the Application and Common Pitfalls.

AOA President Boyd Buser, DO will be presenting a webinar on AOA Certification and the AOA National Match on November 7.
Please check your email for invitations to participate in all upcoming Webinars. Also, let us know if there are any topics that may be of interest to you and your programs.

I am happy to report that our collaboration with AACOM and ACGME on planning joint educational programs for 2017 is progressing smoothly. I hope to share more details in next month’s AODME Newsline.

Sincerely,
Lynn Mark, DO, MA, FACOFP


 

September 2016

Dear AODME Colleagues,

Summer is gone and Fall is here! The days are passing by quickly but AODME is continuing to provide member services through:

  • Webinars that provide assistance to our members concerning Osteopathic Recognition and Scholarly Activity. Upcoming webinars will be held on October 11 and 25.
  • Collaboration with the AOA on the inspection process for AOA programs that are in ACGME pre-accreditation or continuing pre-accreditation status.
  • Partnership in varying capacities with AACOM and ACGME on their 2017 conferences and possibly with other organizations in the future./li>

As programs are busy interviewing for next year’s residency class, many of them are in the process of submitting their applications for ACGME accreditation and/or for Osteopathic Recognition for those that are dually accredited. During the past month, AODME has presented live webinars about the Osteopathic Recognition application process, the curriculum for the Osteopathic Recognition program and Osteopathic Recognition Scholarly Activity. All four webinars were well-received and are available here on the AODME website for those of you who missed them live.

Upcoming live AODME webinars in October are also about Osteopathic Scholarly Activity. Robert Orenstein, D.O., Editor-in-Chief of the JAOA, will be giving two presentations under the title How to Create Scholarly Activity for the Clinician—Part I focuses on “Creating Scholarly Activity” and Part II involves “Getting Published”. We are continuing to provide webinars that will be helpful to our members. If there are topics you would like us to address, please let AODME know. The presentations pertaining to GME and AOA/ACGME accreditation that were given during our 2016 annual meeting in Portland were recorded and are also available on our website. Notices about our upcoming webinars are sent out via e-mail and Twitter. As mentioned in the past, AODME is increasing its use of social media and we are now active on Twitter and Facebook. Please stop by those pages and give us a “Follow” and a “Like” to stay up to the minute on all AODME news and events.

Last month at the AOA Cluster (COPTI, PTRC and COPT) meetings, the AODME resolution – ALTERNATIVE PATHWAY FOR AOA ACCREDITATION FOR AOA ACCREDITED PROGRAMS WITH ACCREDITATION COUNCIL FOR GRADUATE MEDICAL EDUCATION (ACGME) PRE-ACCREDITATION AND CONTINUING PRE-ACCREDITATION – was approved in a modified version. AOA programs that are due for an AOA inspection and have both received five years of continuing approval at their last AOA accreditation site visit and are in ACGME Pre-Accreditation or Continuing Pre-Accreditation status, can request a possible postponement of their AOA site visit for up to 24 months from their Osteopathic Specialty College. It may be necessary to submit supplemental information to the Specialty Colleges prior to being considered for a postponement. Another resolution that was submitted to COPT by the AODME OPTI Council relates to site reviews for new fellowship applications.

As I had mentioned in my last letter, AODME is continuing to work to determine what our future organization will be. We are planning to discontinue our own stand-alone annual meetings and are considering having joint meetings with other organizations. We already have joint meetings with AACOM. The theme for the 2017 AACOM/AODME joint conference is “Educating Leaders for Integrated Health Systems.” The meeting will be in Baltimore, Maryland from April 26-29, 2017. Abstracts and meeting requests are due by 10 a.m. CT Monday, September 26. AODME is also considering collaboration with AHME (Association for Hospital Medical Education).

Recently, ACGME partnered with AODME on the Osteopathic Pre-Conference Program that will be held on March 9, 2017, as part of the Annual ACGME Educational Conference. The theme of the 2017 ACGME conference is Igniting Innovation, and it will be held from March 9-12, in Orlando, Florida. Please note that the Osteopathic Pre-Conference is on the same day as the DIO, new Program Directors and Coordinators Pre-Conferences. If feasible, it would be best to have multiple staff members attending the various Pre-Conferences, so that your organization can acquire as much information as possible. Also, if you register for one of the Pre-Conference, you aren’t locked into only attending that one meeting. You are allowed to switch into one of the other Pre-Conference sessions if a topic is of interest to you.

As I end my letter, I hope that you, our members, realize that AODME is not just about an annual conference. Our organization has been working diligently to help provide services that will help you and your program via AODME and through our collaborations with other educational organizations. Please make use of what we have to offer. If you have suggestions or recommendations, or if you would like to volunteer for one of our committees, please let AODME know.

Sincerely,
Lynn Mark, DO, MA, FACOFP


 

July 2016

Dear AODME Colleagues,

It’s been two months since our very successful annual conference and business meeting in Portland, Oregon, which was attended by more than 231 AODME members. I want to thank those of you who participated and encourage those who did not to attend the 2017 AACOM/AODME joint conference in Baltimore, MD which will be held in April. Lisa Nash, DO will serve as AODME Co-Chair.

I would also like to thank the AODME conference committee, chaired by Joanne Baker, DO, and AODME staff members, Diana Ewert and Elizabeth Harano, for putting together a fantastic program! It was a great opportunity to combine networking and learning with fellow Osteopathic educators. A mixture of ACGME and AOA GME information was presented, and AODME members were able to have one-on-one time with a number of ACGME RC directors. Some of the GME lectures were recorded and are now available for download on the AODME website. Another big thank you goes out to all ACGME staff who participated in our program.

A full AODME Board meeting and an Executive Board meeting have already taken place. I would like to thank those members who have recently left our board for their dedicated service to AODME: David Towle, DO, Robert Hasty, DO, Michael Finley, DO, John Dougherty. DO, and Harold Lausen, DO. The new Board now includes Sandra Snyder, DO, Patricia Matto, DO, and Richard LaBaere, DO. The AODME Board of Trustees at its April board meeting approved resolutions presented by the OPTI Council, chaired by Howard Shulman, DO, that were subsequently presented to the Bureau of Osteopathic Medical Educators (BOME) at their May 23 meeting. One resolution — Alternative Pathway for AOA Accreditation for AOA Accredited Programs with Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Pre-Accreditation and Continuing Pre-Accreditation — has been approved by the BOME and will be discussed at the upcoming August PTRC and COPT meetings. This resolution requests the establishment of an alternative pathway to AOA accreditation during the time that a program is in the process of applying for ACGME accreditation. I encourage OPTI members to attend the August meetings to speak on behalf of the resolution for your programs.

Last month, I represented AODME at the ACGME Pursuing Excellence in Clinical Learning Environments Initiative meeting in Chicago, where a group of 21 organizations in healthcare and education collaborated in the selection of semi-finalist institutions for this initiative. Ultimately, up to eight institutions will receive grants from ACGME to help them improve their clinical learning environments, which will benefit both patients and clinicians.

In July, the AODME Board will hold its annual strategic planning meeting in conjunction with the AOA House of Delegates meeting. There will be much discussion about the future of AODME. We appreciate the frankness of your replies to the survey taken prior to our meeting in Portland and will keep your opinions in mind as we move forward.

As a membership organization, AODME must provide value. We will continue to deliver services relating to GME while deciding which organization(s) we should work/align ourselves with in order to provide value to our members. It is unlikely that the AODME of 2020 will be the same as it is now. We hope to work more closely with other organizations involved with medical education—both undergraduate and graduate. We already have a relationship with AACOM with whom we hold joint conferences every other year regarding the UME/GME continuum.

The upcoming year will be filled with challenges as we navigate through unfamiliar territory while osteopathic programs transition into the single accreditation system. However, disruption of the status quo often leads to innovation. We will be tasked with deciding how we must evolve if we are going to continue providing value to AODME members. I am up for the challenge and believe that you are too. I am reaching out to ask AODME members to assist me and your board with this endeavor. Please send me your concerns, as well as your suggestions on how we can make AODME better than ever!

Sincerely,
Lynn Mark, DO, MA, FACOFP


 

May 2016

Dear AODME Colleagues:

April is here, and for many, this will be busiest travel month of the year. AODME, AACOM, and other major medical education groups typically hold their annual conferences in the early spring.

For AODME, 2016 is a stand-alone year. I have been watching plans for our own conference coming together over the past year, and final touches are being made as you read this message. The content has been selected to be both valuable and timely as we work through the process of changing from one GME accreditation system to another. I hope those of you attending will be pleased by the program the education committee has brought us this year.

The AODME Board of Trustees will convene the evening before our annual business meeting, and AACOM President Dr. Steve Shannon will be our guest. We hope to discuss further a closer alignment between our two organizations. AOA President-elect Dr. Boyd Buser will also join us at the beginning of the meeting to address our concerns about progress toward creating the single accreditation system.

As I look back over emails I have received and reflect on my conversations with many of you during this past year, your challenges and fears are not lost upon me. I have heard your concerns clearly about increased operating costs arising from the transition, mostly associated with the need to add personnel and services. I also recognize your frustration over the uncertainty of our future, as well as yours as individuals. I intend to discuss these and other issues directly with Dr. Buser on your behalf.

Dr. Buser will join us for the annual business meeting itself as part of a Q&A session with AOA leadership. I will be sending out a brief survey before the meeting to capture some of your concerns. This survey will also provide an opportunity for you to comment on the future of AODME.

Our conversation about operational alignment and management services continues with AACOM. I will be attending several sessions with their Board of Deans to discuss these topics when the conference begins next week.

Given the overlap of the undergraduate and GME clinical learning environments, it makes sense for us to dialogue with AACOM to determine opportunities to collaborate. Working together, we will continue to address these two phases of the continuum of osteopathic medical education. The AODME Board of Trustees continues to speak with other groups that might allow us to expand our operational effectiveness.

With all that is changing around us, some of the key questions we face as an organization are:

  1. Who are we?
  2. Why do we exist?
  3. What do/will our members need?
  4. Who will our members be in the future?

I believe we have been given an opportunity to maintain an important role in the future. It is created through current efforts by several prominent organizations to understand and define the clinical learning environment. This “space” is open to continuous improvement and to the influence of osteopathic principles and practices. It is worthy of consideration for AODME to work collaboratively with other groups (like AACOM) to provide the leadership necessary to impact the way the physician of tomorrow is trained today.

It can be difficult to imagine the future and envision what could be when you are dealing with the daily reality of what is (the details of completing the institution sponsorship and program applications, for example), but I implore you not to lose sight of the role we can play in transforming healthcare education and delivery in the United States. We continue to hear education leaders express their opinions about the need to strengthen the UME-GME continuum and to increase the role of community-based training. For the past several decades, these concepts have helped to shape our operational space and success.

There is no reason for that to change.

I wish you continued good luck with your transition efforts and look forward to seeing you in Portland!
SIG-robert-cain-150w
 
Bob

[download a PDF copy of this letter]