Graduate Medical Education
AMA to CMS: Don't cut indirect GME payments
In a June 20 letter (see page 4), the AMA provided comments to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on the proposed CMS hospital payment schedule for fiscal year 2013.
CMS proposes, in part, that new teaching hospitals have more time to build their residency programs before CMS sets their residency caps. In its letter, the AMA expressed support for this proposal, but added that this proposal "should apply to all hospitals that are currently in the process of building their residency training programs."
In addition, the AMA expressed concern with plans by CMS to count labor and delivery days in the denominator of the intern and resident-to-bed ratio, which would result in cuts to Medicare indirect medical education (IME) payments.
ACGME approves new program requirements
At its June meeting, the Board of Directors of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) approved major revisions (with an effective date of July 1, 2013) to the program requirements for:
- Allergy and immunology
- Otolaryngology and its subspecialties of otology/neurotology and pediatric otolaryngology
- The pathology subspecialties of blood banking, chemical pathology, cytopathology, forensic pathology, hematology, medical microbiology, neuropathology, and pediatric pathology
Also approved were two new subspecialties: female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery (obstetrics and gynecology) and complex general surgical oncology (surgery), effective June 10.
A focused revision to the Program Requirements for Family Medicine was not approved.
In related news, as of June 26, the ACGME had accredited 170 new programs for the period July 1, 2012, through June 30, 2013. These include 11 in obstetric anesthesiology, eight in child abuse pediatrics and two in psychosomatic medicine.
Game on: The uses of gaming in medical education
Could the future of resident education lie in gaming? That's a question posed in an article featured in the Journal of Graduate Medical Education.
Cor J. Kalkman, MD, writes that games, which vary in sophistication and include simulations, are increasing in popularity as they allow students to freely make errors without interrupting complex care processes or harming patients. While the idea of using simulation to educate doctors is not unique, technology is helping bring innovative new techniques to medical students and residents in training, Dr. Kalkman writes.
These games range from simulators that help fledgling surgeons develop the necessary skills and eye-hand coordination to perform laparoscopic surgery, to software programs that help residents learn to prescribe medications accurately, to full-scale simulated operating rooms.
Gaming techniques can also extend beyond simulation of surgery and other procedures. A recent New York Times article details a new interactive video game at Northwestern Memorial Hospital that helps doctors identify deceptive behavior and converse with patients suffering from pain medication dependency and abuse issues.
Help medical students choose the right career path
The AMA's newly updated resource guide Choosing a Medical Specialty: The AMA's Resource Guide for Medical Students, 2nd Edition, can help medical students choose the right career path.
This interactive online-only version, updated with the most current data from specialty associations, the Graduate Medical Education Directory and FREIDA Online, includes an enhanced listing of specialties and subspecialties and other residency information.
News and notes
- Can doctors learn empathy? (New York Times)
- Tween pediatrician, left-lung radiologist and other subspecialists of the future (Today's Hospitalist).
- Join the club: "Collegial interactions between residents and attendings are important because they are associated with residency satisfaction. Efforts should be made to expand such interactions to junior and female residents." (Archives of Surgery).
AMA resources for you and your trainees
- View an archive version of our webinar on ways to expand and improve GME
- Check out our new recommendations on strategies to expand funding of GME
- Get trend data on undergraduate and graduate medical education
- Help your residents master the ACGME general competency requirements
- Learn more about patient safety in medical education
- Get updated information on medical licensure
- Obtain state-by-state GME data
- Get an updated copy of our GME glossary (email firstname.lastname@example.org with "glossary" in subject line)
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