Today's News

Thursday, March 1, 2001

Councilors to focus on role in government advocacy

The Board of Councilors will strengthen its role in Washington, D.C. and the states in the coming year by sharpening its delivery of messages to key policymakers, David A. Halsey, MD, chairman-elect of the Councilors, said.

In an address to the Councilors Wednesday, Dr. Halsey outlined some of the key points of his agenda as chairman. "The Councilors broadcast our messages to every legislator and we have been successful in distributing our information," said Dr. Halsey. "Now, we also will focus on key legislators, for instance those on a committee considering an issue of importance to orthopaedic surgeons. We will make sure that all those committee members get specific information to help their considerations of our issues. "

Every councilor who visits a member of that committee will have specific information to present and leave behind, and they will do follow-up calls later. We also will call on other AAOS leaders, members of COMSS and others to make orthopaedic surgeons' goals and concerns known to legislators on Capitol Hill."

The Board of Councilors also will reaffirm its role as the "conscience" of the AAOS, Dr. Halsey said. "We represent all segments of the AAOS," he explained, "those in academics and in practices or a combination of both, as well as those in research and industry."

The October meeting of the Board of Councilors will explore key ethical issues facing orthopaedic surgeons. "The discussions may center on our relations with industry," Dr. Halsey said. "There is new thinking in organized medicine about relations with industry and we need to be aware of it. We need to keep the bar high, but not hamstring our members."

Fiscal responsibility also is a priority item on Dr. Halsey's agen-da. "The Board of Councilors must to be involved in the reorganization that is being planned for the AAOS and the budgetary concerns of the organization," he said.

During the Councilors meeting, several state societies were recognized for having obtained Bone and Joint Decade proclamations from their state officials. Receiving the citation on behalf of the New York State Society were Thomas Lombardo, MD; James Striker, MD; Philip A. Fontanetta, MD; Edward Toriello, MD; and Leroy Cooley, MD. Donald Saltzman, MD, re-ceived a citation on behalf of the Maryland State Society; Dennis Gordon, Utah State Society; and Craig Smith, MD, Wyoming.

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