Wednesday, Nov. 14, 2012
This Week's News
This Week's News
Opening session celebrates physician leaders, progress by house of Medicine
The 66th Interim Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates opened Saturday with a celebration of inspiring acts by physicians and medical leaders, and stirring words from AMA leaders.
During the meeting's opening session, AMA President Jeremy A. Lazarus, MD, told delegates that physicians can accomplish great things when they summon their individual strength and work together toward a brighter future for patients and the profession.
Dr. Lazarus pointed to the AMA's many recent achievements, from securing revisions to the accountable care organization rules to ensuring that physicians are represented on insurance exchanges to protecting them from unreasonable federal audits.
He also acknowledged there was more work to be done—work that can only be achieved through the concerted efforts of physicians of every state, specialty and practice setting.
"This unity of purpose makes us a powerful force," Dr. Lazarus told delegates. By working together, "our destiny is on track to reshape health care."
Later in the session, the AMA's chief executive noted how the association is focusing its resources on molding the future of health care. James L. Madara, MD, AMA executive vice president and CEO, updated delegates on the AMA's five-year strategic plan. Dr. Madara explained that fulfillment of the AMA's strategy will mean a better future for patients, physicians and the country as a whole.
Specifically, the AMA's plan focuses on three areas that are critical for building a health care system that enables sustainable practices and better health outcomes. These areas are:
- Improving health outcomes for patients in ways that add value.
- Accelerating change in medical education to align physician training and education with the future needs of the health care system.
- Enhancing professional satisfaction and practice sustainability by helping physicians navigate delivery and payment models.
Dr. Madara compared the AMA's ambitious goals to John F. Kennedy's vision of landing a man on the moon—a challenge met by brilliant minds, dedication and the collaborative work of hundreds of thousands of people.
"There's a great deal of work ahead of us," Dr. Madara said. "But our opportunity to shape a better health care future—under physician leadership—has never been greater."
Also on Saturday, five physicians received awards for their service and work in the community, while two medical executives earned lifetime achievement awards:
- Benjamin Rush Award for Citizenship and Community Service to Peter J. Dehnel, MD.
- Distinguished Service Award to Mark J. Kubala, MD.
- Medal of Valor to Susan L. Nagele, MD, for her medical work in Africa.
- Dr. William Beaumont Award in Medicine for a distinguished young physician to Latha G. Stead, MD.
- AMA Foundation Award for Health Education to Shakeeb Chinoy, MD.
- Medical Executive Lifetime Achievement Award to James J. Jordan, former executive director of the Alaska State Medical Association.
- Medical Executive Lifetime Achievement Award to Denise E. Zimmerman, executive vice president of the Pennsylvania Medical Society.