April 1996 Bulletin

Secretary's Notes

This report highlights actions taken by the Board of Directors during its meeting in Atlanta, Feb. 20-21, 1996


by D. Eugene Thompson, MD, Academy Board of Directors Secretary

Outcomes data

The Board approved the two-year, $1 million phase two of the Outcomes Data Collection program. The program is designed to create a reliable, consistent, and widely endorsed mechanism for collecting outcomes data from practicing physicians and to use the data to improve the quality of care provided to patients. The data collection program will lead to development of a national database useful for individual practice assessment and research. The pilot phase, conducted from September to December 1995, tested software and data collection from 60 orthopaedic practices. The second phase will include hundreds of orthopaedic practices.

Guideline work group

The appointment of a permanent 10-person work group on clinical guidelines development and assessment was approved by the Board. The first formal task of the Evidence Analysis Work Group will be to develop a protocol and implement a project to scientifically evaluate the levels of evidence support within the Academy's existing algorithms. The information will provide the means by which to identify musculoskeletal research needs and areas in which future clinical guidelines should be developed.

Plan for future

The Board accepted the implementation plan of the Work Group on the Role of Orthopaedic Surgeons in Future Delivery Systems for Musculoskeletal Care. The work group proposed a conference of musculoskeletal care providers (External Summit) to be held late this year to address the provision of care to populations under managed care, to develop a shared forum, and to plan for future communication and interaction among musculoskeletal providers. The work group also proposed a meeting of the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, American Orthopaedic Association, Academic Orthopaedic Society, Residency Review Committee for Orthopaedics and Board of Councilors (Internal Summit) to "influence the education of orthopaedists-in-training (GME) in ways that will prepare them for the evolving delivery system and changing roles of orthopaedic surgeons." Other features of the plan may result in more managed care educational products for Academy members and improved communications between the Academy and members.

Health policy report

Michael H. Graham, MD, chairman of the Council on Health Policy and Practice, presented a status report on the activities of the Task Force on Patient Access to Specialty Care. James W. Strickland, MD, Academy president, praised the report. Dr. Graham reported that an action plan would be developed to collect anecdotal information from orthopaedic surgeons about problems which patients have encountered in managed care organizations. The information is to be reviewed, verified and made known to the public.

Research funding

The Board approved a proposal of the Committee on Research for a patient advocacy campaign for increased musculoskeletal research funding. The objective is to develop and implement an informational program that would encourage the participation of orthopaedic surgeons, researchers, and patients to advocate for increased congressional appropriations for musculoskeletal research within the National Institutes of Health.

Proposed change in process

The Board considered the recommendations of the Task Force on Resolutions and recommended a change in the Bylaws which would make resolutions binding on the Board of Directors only if approved by both the Board of Councilors and the fellowship at the Academy Business meeting. This proposal will be considered by various Academy constituencies. The proposed Bylaws amendment to implement a new resolutions process would be "read" at the 1997 Annual Meeting and voted on by the fellowship at the 1998 Annual Meeting.

New Position Statement

The Board approved a Position Statement on Banning Antipersonnel Land Mines and a modified Advisory Statement on Orthopaedic Medical Testimony.

Public education program

In recognition of the death of David DeHaven, son of Academy first vice president Kenneth E. DeHaven, MD, in a sledding accident just prior to the Annual Meeting and a discussion by several Board members of the similar accidents in their areas, the Board requested that the Committee on Public Education create a public education program on the prevention of injuries encountered in these activities.

Work with AARP

The Board approved a request from the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP) to support AARP's 55 ALIVE/Mature Driving Program. Initially, orthopaedic practices in certain states will be asked to make their patients aware of the classroom refresher course for motorists age 50 and older.

Expand OLC

The expansion of the Orthopaedic Learning Center, to include an auditorium and multimedia center, was approved by the Board.


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