Home From The Editor More angst than anger

More angst than anger

October 2014

Published in the October 2014 issue of Today’s Hospitalist

FOR THE PAST SEVERAL MONTHS , we’ve been hearing that physicians are unhappy with internal medicine recertification. While there has always been grumbling about recertification, requirements unveiled in January of this year have taken that dissatisfaction to new levels.

Specialty societies have met with the American Board of Internal Medicine to air their grievances. And a protest group has gained nearly 5,000 signatures of physicians who say they’ll opt out of recertification unless serious changes are made.

As our cover story points out, hospitalists haven’t been as vocal as other specialties in voicing their concerns. But that doesn’t mean that they aren’t concerned.

Based on the people we spoke to, many hospitalists find parts of the recertification process troublesome. And from a big-picture perspective, they still have questions about how rounds of exams and practice improvement modules really gauge a physician’s skills. There are also logistical concerns about how well recertification matches the needs of hospitalists, many of whom develop niche practices in acute and even post-acute care.

At the same time, other hospitalists point out that even though they have to hit many educational marks for state licensure and hospital credentialing, medicine may need a national standard “like recertification. That view may also stem from the fact that as a group, hospitalists are dedicated to anything that can improve quality, and they may be more used to scrutiny about their performance from all corners. As a result, many hospitalists are still giving recertification the benefit of the doubt.

Based on the physicians we spoke with, the issue of recertification appears to be creating more angst than anger. Meanwhile, ABIM has promised to reconsider some of its newest recertification requirements, so here’s hoping that it takes to heart hospitalists’ concerns.

edoyleEdward Doyle
Editor & Publisher