Wednesday, March 20, 2013
Hospital Practice News
New initiative aims to make health care more reliable
Twenty hospitals from seven health systems located throughout South Carolina are working with the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare to strengthen the hospitals' processes, systems and structures in an effort to ensure consistently excellent, safe patient care.
The initiative, the South Carolina Safe Care Commitment, is an endeavor by the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare and the South Carolina Hospital Association. Through the multiyear engagement, CEOs and other executives from participating South Carolina hospitals will meet regularly to collaborate on processes to move health care toward the same highly reliable performance seen in industries such as aviation and nuclear power.
In a Feb. 25 news release, the Joint Commission Center for Transforming Healthcare states that success will be measured through the results of safety culture survey assessments, evidence that improvement activities have produced significant reductions in patient harm, and associated cost savings. In addition, the South Carolina hospitals will utilize a Web-based electronic application created by the Center for Transforming Healthcare to identify critical practices leading to high reliability in health care and help hospitals assess their performance in these areas.
Minority physicians: Join the AMA Minority Affairs Section
AMA member minority physicians are invited to be part of the AMA Minority Affairs Section (MAS), a group of physicians and medical students dedicated to addressing the issues and concerns of underrepresented U.S. physicians and improving the health of minority populations.
The AMA-MAS is guided by a nine-member governing council that includes three at-large members and one representative each from the AMA Medical Student Section, the AMA Resident and Fellow Section and the AMA Young Physicians Section. The AMA-MAS also maintains an ongoing liaison with national ethnic medical associations through the three positions reserved for the National Hispanic Medical Association, the National Medical Association and the Association of American Indian Physicians.
Overall, the AMA-MAS strives to:
- Increase the number of underrepresented minority medical students and physicians.
- Provide an AMA forum for networking and grassroots advocacy on minority issues.
- Eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities and improve the status of minority health in the United States.
- Promote workforce diversity and cultural competence in the profession.
- Expand the number and influence of minority physicians in the AMA.
- Encourage cooperation and collaboration with minority physician medical associations and other relevant organizations.
- Provide advice and counsel on minority issues to the AMA Board of Trustees and to AMA councils.
All AMA member minority physicians are encouraged to be part of the AMA-MAS. Fill out the AMA-MAS online membership form to get started.
Use model code of conduct in medical staff bylaws
The AMA has revised its model code of conduct to reflect recent changes to standards issued by the Joint Commission. This model code of conduct, developed for insertion in medical staff bylaws, aims to assist medical staffs with implementation of a code of conduct in accordance with AMA policy and consistent with the Joint Commission Leadership Standard.
Employed physicians: Look to the AMA for advice
AMA member physicians in contractual relationships with hospitals, health systems and other similar entities can receive personal assistance from the AMA. While the AMA cannot provide legal opinions or representation, it is dedicated to answering questions and providing advice on such topics as contracting, credentialing, peer review, due process and medical staff governance.
AMA members may take advantage of this valuable resource in either of two ways:
- Complete a brief online form, and an AMA expert on physician-hospital/health system relations will contact you to discuss your questions or concerns.
- Contact AMA Member Relations via email or at (800) 262-3211 to arrange a time to discuss your questions or concerns with an AMA expert on physician-hospital/health system relations.
This offer is a benefit of AMA membership. If you're not a member, join today.
New model agreement helps with service line contracts
With service line agreements becoming both more popular and more complex, the AMA offers a new resource to assist physicians and their legal counsel in navigating and negotiating these contracts.
View new education program webcasts on leadership
Learn about physician leadership, ethical leadership and newly integrated medical practices by viewing new webcasts from the AMA Organized Medical Staff Section. Physicians can claim continuing medical education credit in the form of AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ for watching the webcasts. Titles include:
- "Physician leadership during challenging times" (2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ available)
- "Leadership and the AMA Code of Medical Ethics" (1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™ available)
- "Lessons learned from newly integrated medical practices: Two case studies" (1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ available)
AMA members can view these webcasts for free; nonmembers can watch them for $30 per credit hour. If you're not an AMA member, join today.
Model conflict management process now available
Joint Commission accreditation standards require the development of a conflict management process to settle disputes between the organized medical staff and the governing body. With that, the AMA offers a model conflict management process that provides guidance for the development of such a process, as well as a process for resolving disputes between the medical executive committee and other members of the medical staff.