AOA commits DO member money to lobby for MOL requirements, but why?

A friend of IP4PI writes in:

The AOA just passed a resolution committing our membership dollars to lobby for Maintenance of Licensure requirements [overseen by the AOA].  I was not able to be in the committee hearing, but in our state meeting we voted against it.  On the floor of the house, when I expected our leadership to speak the will of the caucus, they did not speak at all. All states were silent as to the issue and it passed quickly without any objection.  In fact, it appeared that most delegates were not yet awake.  The only comment I got when I asked why we did not defend ourselves was that MOL is inevitable, and we have to vote for it if we want a place at the table. When will doctors learn that if they are told to advocate for their own destruction in order to make it less painful, it means they were never at the table.  We just helped by marinating ourselves for our place ON the table?

[Note from editor: Further demonstrating the AOA’s disregard for members, a provision in the resolutions directing the AOA to “make OCC more manageable and economically feasible was struck.]


H-627 MAINTENANCE OF LICENSURE (H638-A/14) Resolution No. H-627

Be it resolved: The American Osteopathic Association (AOA)

(1) supports the development of state level maintenance of licensure (MOL) programs to demonstrate that ALL physicians are competent TO provide quality care THAT INCORPORATES RELEVANT TECHNOLOGICAL AND SCIENTIFIC ADVANCEMENTS over the course of their career. Flexible pathways for achieving MOL should be maintained. The requirements for MOL should balance transparency with privacy protection and not be overly burdensome or costly to physicians or state licensing boards; 

(2) Continues to address and promote physician competency through the teaching of core competencies at the predoctoral and postdoctoral levels as well as ongoing physician assessment through Osteopathic Continuous Certification (OCC) and the AOA Clinical Assessment Program (CAP) or its equivalent;

(3) Continues to work with State Osteopathic Affiliates, the American Association of Osteopathic Examiners and other stakeholders to establish, AND implement MOL policies that promote patient safety and the delivery of high quality of care;

(4)WILL THROUGH ITS BUREAUS, COUNCILS AND COMMITTEES, CONTINUE TO ENSURE THAT OCC IS RECOGNIZED BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT, STATE GOVERNMENTS AND OTHER REGULATORY AGENCIES AND CREDENTIALING BODIES AS EQUIVALENT TO OTHER NATIONAL CERTIFYING BODIES’ “MAINTENANCE” OR “CONTINUOUS” CERTIFICATION PROGRAMS.;

(5) WHILE SUPPORTING THE USE OF BOARD CERTIFICATION AS A  RECOGNITION OF QUALITY AND EXCELLENCE, SIGNIFYING THE HIGHEST PHYSICIAN ACHIEVEMENT IN A PARTICULAR SPECIALTY; OPPOSES ANY EFFORTS TO REQUIRE OCC AS A CONDITION OF MEDICAL LICENSURE.;

(6) THE AOA COLLABORATES WITH ENTITIES PROPERLY QUALIFIED FOR AND TASKED WITH DECISION-MAKING REGARDING INSURANCE PAYMENT, HOSPITAL PRIVILEGES, NETWORK PARTICIPATION, PAYMENT MALPRACTICE INSURANCE COVERAGE, PHYSICIAN EMPLOYMENT, TO DETERMINE THE ROLE OF PHYSICIAN BOARD CERTIFICATION AND OCC OR OTHER “MAINTENANCE” OF CERTIFICATION” PROGRAMS IN SUCH DECISIONS.;

(7) CONTINUES TO INNOVATE AND IMPROVE THE OCC PROCESS.

APPROVED

https://osteopathic.org/wp-content/uploads/2019-Ad-Hoc-Committee-Report-WITHACTION.pdf

Federal Judge Ends Mandatory AOA Membership Tied to Board Certification

“A federal judge in Camden has granted final approval to an $84 million settlement of an antitrust class action against the American Osteopathic Association,” related to the tying of AOA membership to the ability to maintain specialty certification through Osteopathic Continuous Certification, reported the New Jersey Law Journal on December 4, 2018.

The lawfirm leading the case, Duane Morris, LLC, earlier reported on what is in the settlement:

In addition to agreeing to end its practice of conditioning AOA board certification on purchasing annual membership in the AOA, which was at the center of the lawsuit, the AOA has also agreed to provide a host of other economic benefits to the more than 45,000 class members, such as:

  • for three years reducing its annual dues by $90 and
  • waiving a $90 board certification fee;
  • for two years offering AOA members two free CME courses of up to 12 aggregate credits;
  • contributing not less than $2 million to an osteopathic awareness campaign;
  • eliminating distinctions between online and in-person CME for purposes of AOA membership;
  • lifetime board certification is restored for all those certified prior 1997;
  • committee of independent private practice physicians will be created to represent independent practice considerations to the AOA board; and
  • physicians will not lose membership in the AOA as a result of failing to meet the CME requirement, provided that the physicians meet the CME requirements for the state(s) in which they practice.

Weighed against the uncertainty and expense of protracted litigation, the valuable benefits the AOA has agreed to provide to resolve the claims against it demonstrate that the settlement is in the best interest of the class and sub-classes, as well as the AOA, stated Duane Morris.

https://www.duanemorris.com/pressreleases/osteopathic_physicians_class_action_settlement_0718.html

For a full copy of the settlement agreements, see:
https://www.duanemorris.com/site/static/AOA_joint_motion_for_certification_0718.pdf

For a full history of the suit, see:
https://www.duanemorris.com/site/osteopathclassaction.html

Here is the wording from the motion on the key items:

Washington State Passes Bill Outlawing MOC for Licensure

Friend of IP4PI, Ken Lee, MD writes in:

There is some good news from WA state. The Legislature just passed with NO opposition in either house HB 2257 that outlaws MOC for MD /DO licensure. It is veto proof. It sits on the Governor’s desk and in my state of WA if he does not sign it in a few days it becomes law automatically. Click here for the bill. The next step would be to do the same for insurance payments, hospital privileges. Several years ago I had my state medical association adopt my resolution to ban MOC for MD licensure; the state medical licensing body agreed to this idea but it was never made into law until now.  Fight on ! The impossible only seems that way.

Remember when the AOA worked for their members?

Gina Reghetti, DO shares her response to the AOA’s email alert opposing the repeal of ObamaCare:

Dear Dr. Buser:

I am writing in response to your “Urgent Action” email that I received on July 22, 2017, regarding the repeal of the PPACA, which is attached below.

I do not agree with your position that if the PPACA is repealed it would “significantly jeopardize our heath care system.” Since you represent the AOA as its president, I feel that you are using your position to influence political agendas that are not in the best interest of American patients and their doctors.

I would hope that the AOA does not use doctors’ membership dues and board certification fees to support such agendas that do not support the Osteopathic Philosophy of independent, private, practice osteopathic doctors that deliver one-on-one direct, private care to their patients without government or third party intruders, and that stay true to the practice of Osteopathy, as Andrew Taylor Still, D.O., M.D., founded.

Your stance appears not to support the Free Markets in the USA, and direct pay practices which are far better solutions than a government controlled healthcare system.

I take great insult that the AOA, through your voice as president, uses osteopathic doctors’ hard earned money to push agendas that are not reflective of the American way, and I believe that it constitutes just another AOA federal violation.

I am also very concerned as to why the AOA cashed my ninety dollar check for my board certification dues, yet the website displays that my board certification is inactive for the public to view, when that is incorrect since my board certification is dated to expire in 2022; although it should be a lifetime certification. Worse yet, the message to the public is to indicate that if osteopathic doctors do not hold board certifications through the AOA then they are somehow less qualified to practice medicine. I find this to be very defaming, and I request that this serious issue be corrected immediately and removed from the public website.

I remember when the AOA worked for their osteopathic physicians and surgeons and supported Osteopathy, but over the many years that role does not appear to be so any longer. Rather the AOA uses their power to lobby, such agendas, that are against the osteopathic oath and training of osteopathic physicians and surgeons here in the USA.

The AOA does not correctly reflect the opinions of their doctors; especially, when emails as yours are sent. There is no room for Politics in Medicine!

I would highly recommend that you, and the AOA, cease immediately from sending emails out that reflect your political stance rather than the Osteopathic Profession’s.

I strongly oppose your views as do the majority of practicing physicians and surgeons across this great nation.

Let us keep the United States of America a free nation for all and let us keep the government out of peoples’ lives, and especially out of healthcare, since it will only do more harm than good.

I thank you for your understanding and immediate attention to this serious matter.

I look forward to hearing from you to inform me that my Inactive board status is corrected back to Active status as it should be.

Respectfully,

Gina Reghetti, D.O.
AOA #64509
Attached: Dr. Buser’s email below:

 

 

 

Advocacy Action Alert


Dear Colleagues:

As you may have heard, the Senate will soon vote to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) without a legislative alternative. Should this vote be successful, it would significantly jeopardize our heath care system, and result in a loss of coverage and access to care for up to 32 million Americans, and the potential for significant increase in premium costs.

Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Susan Collins, (R-ME), and Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) have expressed their opposition and concerns about this plan. It is critical for any health care legislative proposals to achieve a high-quality, patient-centered, and cost-efficient system that meets the needs of our patients. I urge you to contact your senator to express your support for her pragmatic approach to health care reform and her vocal opposition to repealing PPACA without a legislative alternative, in order to ensure our patients have the continued access to health care.
The time is now to write to your senator and support her pragmatic approach to health care to ensure that our aforementioned goals on transforming the health care system focus on our patients.

Boyd R. Buser, DO

AOA President

 *Wondering how the AOA has developed its position on health care reform and the AHCA to date? Watch our webinar that explains the process.

UPDATE: AOA BOS fails to gut HOD policy opposing OCC MOC Mandates

Breaking: American Osteopathic Association (AOA) House of Delegates (HOD) affirms member opposition to use of OCC MOC as condition of licensure, hospital privileges, employment, and insurance reimbursement.

Special thanks to delegates:

Jeff Davis DO
Sheila Page DO
Kelli Ward DO
Sam Urick DO
Leroy Young DO


Here’s our original post with details about what the HOD successfully defeated:

Can you say “tone deaf”? It seems the AOA is not hearing the message that physicians and patients across the U.S. continue to drown in a sea of red tape.

While opposing ObamaCare repeal and replace, the AOA is attempting a repeal and replace of its own.

In a brazen act of self dealing, the AOA Bureau of Osteopathic Specialists is sponsoring resolution H-227 at the AOA House of Delegates, currently underway at the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile Hotel.  H-227 would repeal established AOA policy opposing OCC mandates and replace it with the following:

The AOA opposes any efforts to require OCC as a condition for medical licensure, 12 insurance reimbursement or network participation, malpractice insurance coverage or as 13 a requirement for physician employment  RESTRICT THE USE OF BOARD CERTIFICATION AS A MARK OF EXCELLENCE, AND SUPPORTS ITS USE BY ENTITIES TO PROTECT THE PUBLIC AND ASSURE THE DELIVERY OF HIGH-QUALITY PATIENT CARE.

Click here for a link to the full resolution.

Here are a few powerful ways you can voice YOUR opposition to this harmful change!

  1. Use Twitter hashtag  to encourage the HOD to oppose H-227.
  2. Tweet your opposition to @AOAforDOs.
  3. Retweet this Tweet:

 

Anti-MOC Victories at Michigan State Medical Society House of Delegates

Friend of IP4PI Dr. Meg Edison writes in:

Michigan State Medical Society House of Delegates was last weekend, Martin Dubravec and I ran around like crazy, testifying in support of 4 anti-MOC resolutions and against a resolution to join the FSMB Compact. The outcome was very successful:

  1. The delegates reaffirmed strong opposition to the FSMB Compact (making me very happy, since it was my resolution from 2 years ago that we oppose the compact).
  2. We passed a resolution to engage legal counsel to investigate anti-trust violations against ABMS/insurers/hospitals in Michigan.
  3. We passed a resolution calling for an end to the direct-to-consumer advertising of the ABMS MOC product.
  4. We passed a resolution calling for public access to initial board certification status on ABMS websites.
  5. A resolution asking the AMA to amend their MOC policy to require informed consent from patients before conscripting them into ABMS MOC QI projects was referred to the board for more study, disappointing…but not surprising given how many academics are delegates. Ken Fisher was on the committee that heard this, he fought like mad and got it approved…but the delegates extracted it and referred it to the board on the house floor. Still, the conversation on the ethics of MOC & research was started.

I’ve attached the resolutions (see links embedded in list above) for your future reference if you’d like to share and pass similar resolutions in your state medical societies. I want to point out, it is a small handful of us (me, Martin Dubravec, Ken Fisher). There were no other docs testifying. We don’t need an army to make change…just a few can do this. Yes, it’s a pain to give up a few hours on Saturday, these meetings are confusing and intimidating, but find a friend, become delegates and make this happen.
-Meg

I’ll add a 6th victory that came from years of getting the right people involved in organized medicine and our House of Delegates…

6.) On the same page as the “Oppose IMLC” resolution attached below, the resolution 24-17 to “study single payer” was “amended” to remove all language on “single payer” and approved with broad language to study all alternative payment models…which includes DPC and other free market innovations. Just 3 years ago, this same body voted to approve single payer…we’ve come a long way.

I should not be mandated to PAY-to-Practice this great noble profession of Osteopathy.

IP4PI supporter Gina Reghetti, D.O. shares correspondence regarding continued attacks on the osteopathic profession.

Just a note to let you know that I received a letter today from the AOA, dated 1-9-2017 and signed by Jeffrey L. Weaver, O.D., yes, OD, not DO, an Optometrist who is the Vice President, Certifying Board Services, and from Eunice Lee, Associate Vice President, Client and Member Services, informing me that I have until February 1, 2017 to renew membership to keep my AOA board certification active. My board certification is wrongfully time-dated to expire in December 31st, 2022.

My scanner isn’t connecting to my PC wifi so I am unable to email the letter to you currently.

I called Jeffrey L. Weaver, O.D., this morning to confirm that he is not a DO, and I had a conversation with him for more than an hour regarding my views and concerns of the wrong agendas that the AOA has enforced on their doctors, such as re-certifications, and OCCs and membership dues connected to certifications. Continue reading