To ALL concerned osteopathic and allopathic physicians:
This message is urgent. I will try to briefly sum up recent events. My Email list is limited. It is imperative that you spread the word among as many physicians as you can across the country.
Please forward this on to your physician list. Wide distribution is needed for change to occur.
Several of my colleagues have labeled Maintenance of Licensure (MOL), Maintenance of
Certification (MOC), and Osteopathic Continuous Certification (OCC) as essentially EVIL.
Promotion of these mandates will bring about the end of the wonderful and compassionate office based Primary Care Medicine that we and our patients have known for the past 100 years.
It all started with CME and Certification of the Specialties. Then came Certification of the GP, the general practitioner, the good old country doctor, who was now re-labeled family physician.
This was followed by a one year FP residency, and later a two year FP residency after the
rotating internship. Then the internship slowly disappeared and the FP residency become a full three years.
Certifications, both those grand-fathered and those early on residency trained, were supposed to be for life. However, these lifetime certifications will become worthless when OCC, MOC, and MOL are set in place. Since recent certifications are time-limited, the hospitals, the insurance companies, and the government will never allow a double standard.
Why haven’t our parent organizations, the AOA and the AMA, properly represented us over the years? Instead, they have continued to expand and to place roadblocks into the private practice of medicine. New colleges, OPTI’s, CME fees, large administrative organizations, certification examinations, annual dues and certification fees, COMLEX, CAP, etc, etc. The list goes on and on. The reason of course, as Jerry Maguire once said, is “FOLLOW THE MONEY.”
The process is simple to explain. First, mandate that every physician be required to re-certify every few years through OCC and MOC. Then, in partnership with the Federation of State Medical Boards, promote MOL in every state. Finally, have the various State Boards accept OCC and MOC for their requirement of MOL.
VOILA ! GET IT ?
TOTAL CONTROL BY YOUR OWN ORGANIZATION OVER YOU FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.
What happens if you fail the re-licensure exam ? Are you forced to close your doors and
abandon your practice ? Nobody seems to have the answer to this one.
Does OCC or MOL or MOC improve medical care ? Nobody has the answer to that one either.
COMLEX is a prime example of total AOA control. As it now stands, an osteopathic medical school can not give a degree to any student who fails to pass the COMLEX exam, even if that student fulfills all the academic requirements of the school. So, with $ 200,000 of student loans to be paid, the student can not even start their residency program but is left out in limbo…. with no place to go….. and is virtually up the creek without a paddle.
It is ironic that, just like with the federal government, your dues, just like your taxes, pay for
the large administrative salaries, the airline travel, and the excellent pensions…. and they
pay it to people who are promoting mandates that may not represent your interests.
An interesting turn of events occurred at the AOA House of Delegates meeting in Chicago last week. New Jersey brought up a Resolution that the AOA should opposed Maintenance of Licensure. The perception among many members is that the AOA is supporting MOL, especially in view of the fact that its three prime leaders went to the recent FSBME meeting in Santa Fe.
Before anyone could speak on the Resolution, a motion was made to refer. The speaker ruled that a motion to refer takes precedence over the Resolution itself. The 30 minute discussion that followed was then concerned with referral and NOT with the gist of the Resolution. It is interesting to note that two of the speakers in favor of referral and opposed to the Resolution were recently elected members of the AOA Board of Trustees. A third speaker was the CEO of the Federation of State Boards, which many members considered as being inappropriate since he was not a seated delegate and was allowed to speak on a referral motion.
The whole purpose of the New Jersey Resolution was to get a sense of the feeling of the members of the House on MOL. The actions taken at the AOA House prevented this vote from being taken.
There seemed to be a basic fear by the organization of letting this vote take place.
Various osteopathic and allopathic organizations have stepped forward with similar resolutions to prevent MOL. Also, a lawsuit has been filed on this issue. An MD in New Jersey is currently running for US Senate, where one of her platform positions is opposition to MOL.
It is imperative that the hard-working and compassionate physicians of this great nation be
made aware of these issues. If you are concerned, you will help to spread the word so that
these physicians might have a stronger voice in determining their own destiny.
Also, speak to your county, your state, and your national leaders and let them know how you feel.
Get involved. Read a daily newspaper. Protect yourself and protect your patients from the overreach of government and that of your own associations.