ABIM and Societies Work on Behalf of our Physician Community

ABIM and Societies Work on Behalf of our Physician Community

We have made a lot of progress so far in 2017, and that’s all thanks to our colleagues at medical specialty societies and, of course, our diplomates. The American Board of Internal Medicine’s (ABIM) Community Engagement Team attended 12 society meetings this spring in order to continue putting physician feedback at the forefront of improvements to the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program. Thank you to the physicians who attended ABIM’s discovery sessions to be a part of the change happening at ABIM and helping to co-create the future of board certification. A special thank you to all medical societies that hosted meetings that we were able to participate in via a discovery session or booth:

  • March 17-19:American College of Cardiology- ACC.17
  • March 30-April 1, 2017:American College of Physicians – ACP Internal Medicine Meeting 2017
  • April 1-4:Endocrine Society- ENDO 2017
  • April 19-22: Society of General Internal Medicine- 2017 SGIM Annual Meeting
  • May 1-4: Society of Hospital Medicine- Hospital Medicine 2017
  • May 3-7: American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists- AACE 26th Annual Scientific and Clinical Congress
  • May 6-9: Digestive Disease Week- DDW 2017
  • May 10-13: Heart Rhythm Society- Heart Rhythm 2017
  • May 10-13: Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions- SCAI 2017
  • May 17-20: American Geriatrics Society- AGS 2017 Annual Scientific Meeting
  • May 19–24: American Thoracic Society- ATS 2017
  • June 1-6: American Society of Clinical Oncology- 2017 ASCO Annual Meeting

The Spring 2017 Internal Medicine Summit

Representatives from 32 societies joined ABIM for the Spring 2017 Internal Medicine Summit in Philadelphia on April 7. This meeting was an opportunity for IM community leaders to come together and discuss cross-cutting issues important to Internal Medicine. I earnestly extend my gratitude to the society leadership and staff who attended the Summit to engage in thoughtful peer-to-peer discourse on these topics.

This interactive meeting covered a number of important areas, including:

The new two-year Knowledge Check-In

ABIM leadership provided an update on its two-year maintenance pathway and the recently-announced enhancements to the exam experience, including an open-book option and Knowledge Check-In. Society representatives shared feedback on various aspects of the new program. This feedback was very helpful and suggested that many societies are optimistic about working with their memberships on the new model.

Innovative approaches in collaboration between societies and ABIM

We reiterated ABIM’s commitment to exploring and forming new partnerships with medical societies, including working with societies to produce a new kind of maintenance pathway. We are in very early exploration stages with the American College of Physicians (ACP), the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and the American College of Cardiology (ACC), and our hope is that these initial talks will ultimately produce a template for working with other societies.

Measuring quality in a changing healthcare landscape

A forward-looking discussion on quality improvement (QI) included representatives from the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education, the Heart Rhythm Society, the Society of Hospital Medicine, and the American College of Rheumatology. The panel offered insight into principles-based criteria and included a patient perspective on potential ways to improve the quality of care delivered. The panel also discussed products from societies that have been successful in measuring quality improvement while fitting seamlessly into a health system’s workflow. Collectively, we discussed the role QI might play within a new health care landscape.

Exploring topics of importance to the future of Internal Medicine

While not a new phenomenon, the concept of “fake news” has reminded us how quickly misinformation can be disseminated and accepted as fact. During the Summit, a panel of journalists and media experts discussed how the spread of misinformation, when coupled with confirmation bias, impacts the medical community and what its implications are for healthcare organizations. Patients seek credible information in this increasingly complex landscape, and the Internal Medicine community must work together to maintain trust by committing to an open-dialogue about evidence-based medicine and competency

Demonstrating value to physicians and patients in an era of uncertainty

The ways in which our organizations demonstrate value was both explicit and implicit in much of our conversations. Thinking about the roles we all play in helping make care better for patients — as well as ensuring there is a standard that they can count on — is a responsibility we all share.

I appreciated the opportunity to think collectively about how we can maintain trust with the public and also help our colleagues maintain trust with their patients.

The Spring 2017 Internal Medicine Summit was a seminal moment for ABIM and medical societies to reflect upon the challenges faced by the profession beyond just certification, and I thank the Summit’s more than 100 participants for actively participating in discussions. As a community, we must continue addressing the many challenges facing us in this new era of rapidly advancing technology and novel ways of communicating.


If you missed us this spring, there are many other opportunities to share your ideas and feedback. Check the Upcoming Events page for fall meeting dates, here. Join the ABIM Community Insights Network to be a part of an interactive community of your peers providing feedback to ABIM, here.

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