Introducing the Academy’s professional compliance program
In December, the AAOS Board of Directors adopted three Standards of Professionalism (SOPs) that will be considered during the 2005 Annual Meeting and voted on by the fellowship shortly after the Annual Meeting. These SOPs correspond with the AAOS Code of Medical Ethics and Professionalism and identify minimum standards of conduct for orthopaedic surgeons in three separate subject areas: Orthopaedic Expert Witness Testimony, Professional Relationships, and Providing Musculoskeletal Services to Patients. The SOPs form the basis upon which AAOS fellows or members may file grievances under the proposed AAOS Professional Compliance Program. After the 2005 meeting, AAOS fellows will also vote on bylaw amendments creating the AAOS Professional Compliance Program.
More than 150 orthopaedic surgeons and AAOS staff worked to develop, review and refine the SOPs, developed by the Expert Witness Board Project Team, chaired by David A. Halsey, MD. The Board of Councilors, the Professional Liability Committee, the Patient Safety Committee, and the Ethics Committee each offered their comments and recommendations regarding the SOPs before the Board action in December.
The SOPs and bylaws amendments will be mailed with the Official Notice of the Annual Meeting. The February 2005 AAOS Bulletin will feature an in-depth article on the AAOS Professional Compliance Program and the SOPs. Fellows and members are invited to comment on the Professional Compliance Program and the SOPs at the Bylaws Committee Open Hearing, the Association Business Meeting, and the Town Hall meeting during the 2005 Annual Meeting.