Dear reader, the following tongue in cheek-yet extremely informative- article is brought to you by Jarrad Morgan, OMSIII, COSGP National Parliamentarian; Gabrielle Rozenberg, OMSIII, COSGP Legislative Representative; & the letter Q
Gather around to listen and allow us to regale you with tales of how AACOM’s Council of Osteopathic Student Government Presidents (COSGP) confronted and vanquished its enemies through the formation of a ferocious NOSC (National Osteopathic Student Caucus) this past July. The purpose of a NOSC is to formulate the official student position on resolutions that will be presented to the AOA House of Delegates (HOD), which in turn sets the policies for our profession. Led by a charismatic barrister wielding a mighty hammer, the courageous participants engaged in many battles for the future of medical education in the United States.
In an effort to present a unified front and face down its fiendishly formidable foes, the members of the NOSC passed several resolutions by unanimous consent (a parliamentary tool used when only a madman might object to passage of the motion). With this cunning maneuver, the NOSC passed H-201 (increase graduate medical education [GME] opportunities), H-205 (GME preference for U.S. graduates), H-304 (prohibit discrimination against osteopathic students), and H-345 (train students to use electronic medical records).
Henceforth, in an effort to ease reference, we will review this epic confrontation in numerical order. We recommend that you get a tall glass of water before reading further because things are going to get a little dry.
H-200 sought to help address the health shortage in rural America. To this end, H-200 encourages the development of teaching centers in rural Federally Qualified Health Centers. The hope is that by training residents in rural areas, they will be more likely to remain in these areas after their training is complete. The NOSC approved this resolution, which was also approved at HOD. [Read more...]
By: Krishna Patel, 2nd Vice Chair
In an historic vote on July 19, 2014, the AOA House of Delegates supported the decision of the AOA Board of Trustees to pursue a single accreditation system for graduate medical education (GME). The vote follows over two years of deliberations and a February 2014 announcement by the AOA, AACOM and the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) that a tripartite decision was reached to move forward with the single GME accreditation system. This decision was overwhelmingly supported by students, as demonstrated at the National Osteopathic Student Caucus (NOSC) on July 16, 2014 and by a student survey conducted by AACOM in cooperation with COSGP in March 2014.1 See The NOSC Triumphant for more details.
Under the new system, AOA-approved training programs are encouraged to apply for ACGME accreditation beginning July 1, 2015 and through June 30, 2020. Upon submission of their application, AOA-approved programs will be granted pre-accreditation status as part of the ACGME accreditation process. Pre-accreditation status will allow for AOA-approved programs that have applied for ACGME accreditation and trainees to benefit from the terms of the agreement reached by the three organizations. By July 1, 2020, the AOA will cease to provide GME accreditation.
Single accreditation maintains greater opportunity for osteopathic students to pursue specialty and subspecialty fellowships, including some of which are not offered as AOA programs. Through this new system, osteopathic students will not be limited access to ACGME residencies or fellowships which would occur with the ACGME’s planned changes to its Common Program Requirements which take effect July 2016.
In other words, instead of two separate residency accreditation systems, AOA, AACOM, and the ACGME are joining together to provide a more efficient and effective means of GME accreditation that will benefit our students overall. Together, the AOA, AACOM, and the ACGME can stand under a single GME accreditation system to provide more powerful leverage when advocating to lawmakers on issues regarding GME, such as funding. Furthermore, the single GME accreditation system allows for more accountability and continuity of education between programs across the country. In turn, this will benefit our students while improving our healthcare system overall.
AOA-approved programs that apply for ACGME accreditation can seek osteopathic recognition with the new Osteopathic Principles Committee (OPC). The OPC will develop standards for recognizing osteopathically-focused programs and pre-requisite requirements for MDs seeking entry into these programs. Not only will this preserve our DO philosophy but will provide a powerful means to educate the country on our unique patient practices.
However, it is important to note that undergraduate medical education will not be affected. Commission on Osteopathic College Accreditation (COCA) will continue to accredit osteopathic medical schools, and Liaison Committee on Medical Education (LCME) will continue to accredit allopathic schools. The COMLEX will continue to be the standard examination tool our profession will use to determine licensure. A single Match has not been instated at this time.
“The AOA strongly believes the public will beneﬁt from a single standardized system to evaluate the effectiveness of GME programs for producing competent physicians. Through osteopathic-focused residency programs, the new GME accreditation system will recognize the unique principles and practices of the osteopathic medical profession and its contributions to health care in the U.S.”2
Stephen C. Shannon, DO, MPH, President of AACOM “Healthcare and medical education in the U.S. today face many challenges. We feel that this approach to GME accreditation not only streamlines but strengthens the postdoctoral education process, and will produce physicians who are able to meet those health care challenges, enhancing the ability for all physicians to learn the unique characteristics of osteopathic medical practice.”3
How did these discussions begin?
In late 2011, the ACGME proposed changes to their Common Program Requirements, that govern ACGME accredited resident programs. The change that would affect osteopathic medical students is: “All required clinical education for entry into ACGME-accredited fellowship programs must be completed in an ACGME-accredited residency program, an ACGME International-accredited residency program, or a Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada-accredited residency program located in Canada.”4 This would have potentially created a situation of limited access to advanced training in ACGME programs for DOs who had completed prior training in AOA-approved GME programs.
How does the umbrella of accreditation governance fall?
Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) is a private, non-proﬁt, professional organization responsible for evaluation and accreditation of more than 9,500 residency education programs in the U.S. Approximately 8.6% of these residency spots are ﬁlled by osteopathic physicians.5 ACGME is sponsored by ﬁve member organizations, and each organization nominates four members to the Board of Directors. AOA and AACOM will become member organizations of ACGME with each nominating four members to the Board of Directors. Therefore, our philosophy will be strongly represented and advocated through the new single accreditation system. This acts to preserve our profession as a whole, incorporating its values within a greater system, all while moving forward into a new residency era.
What is a Memorandum of Understanding?
It is a form of legal agreement. It sets out the intended formation of the single accreditation system for GME, the goals of the parties, the key events that will happen, when they are expected to take place, etc. It is intended to serve as a guide so that, if questions arise down the line, there is a record as to what was agreed to. It is intended to provide structure and guidance. Delegates of each state, including students were able to review the MOU at the House of Delegates this past July. (cont. page 3)
To learn more, please see the following resources and FAQs:
- AACOM’s website for single GME updates: http://www.aacom.org/news/latest/Pages/SingleGME.aspx
- Osteopathic Medical Students: http://www.osteopathic.org/inside-aoa/Pages/single-gme-accreditation-system-faq-students.aspx
- Faculty and Program Directors: http://www.osteopathic.org/inside-aoa/Pages/single-gme-accreditation-system-faq-program-directors.aspx
- Specialty Colleges: http://www.osteopathic.org/inside-aoa/Pages/single-gme-accreditation-system-faq-specialty-colleges.aspx
- ACGME’s new microsite dedicated to the single GME accreditation system: https://www.acgme.org/acgmeweb/tabid/445/GraduateMedicalEducation/SingleAccreditationSystemforAOA-ApprovedPrograms.aspx
We wanted to bring to your attention to an excellent opportunity for pre-medical students to meet with many of the nation’s Osteopathic Medical Colleges’ admission officers in greater Chicago, Illinois.
September 30 – October 2, 2014 events will be held at the following campuses: Loyola University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). Please see attached recruitment flyer.
Details for these events are at AACOM’s Recruitment Events Calendar:http://www.aacom.org/events/
For those applicants applying now or waiting to hear back, we encourage them to attend these upcoming recruitment events to meet one-on-one with the admission officers who will be attending.
The following medical schools will be participating at these Chicago area campus events.
- American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM)
- Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine of Midwestern University (CCOM)
- Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine (DMU-COM)* *UIUC event only
- New York Institute of Technology College of Osteopathic Medicine (NYIT-COM)
- Kansas City University of Medicine & Biosciences College of Osteopathic Medicine(KCUMB-COM)
- Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM)* * UIUC & UIC only
- Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MUCOM)
- Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine (RowanSOM)
- West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM)
The University of Pikeville-Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine’s chapter of the Student Osteopathic Medical Association (SOMA) & the American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine (AACOM) are hosting a recruitment fair for pre-medical students and pre-health advisers.
There you will get the chance to learn more about Osteopathic medicine and schools, experience OMM/OMT, meet admissions officers, and so much more!
There will be representatives from the following colleges/organizations:
- Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine (CUSOM)
- Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine (VCOM)
- Lincoln Memorial University- DeBusk College of Osteopathic Medicine (LMU-DCOM)
- Marian University College of Osteopathic Medicine (MUCOM)
- Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (OUHCOM)
- Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM)
- University of New England College of Osteopathic Medicine (UNECOM)
- University of Pikeville- Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine (UP-KYCOM)
- West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM)
Attend for a chance to win an iPad Air!
Please follow this link to register and learn more about this wonderful event:
Earlier today, the AOA House of Delegates discussed resolution H-800: Single Graduate Medical Education Accreditation System. The special reference committee on Single GME Accreditation System recommended that the resolution be approved as amended. After months of research and debate, the resolution and amendments were discussed by the house for just under an hour before it was called to question and subsequently approved.
Members of COSGP worked with leaders from SOMA to help craft resolution H-808. Parts of this resolution were folded into resolution H-800 to reflect osteopathic student support of single accreditation. We at COSGP would like to thank the members of the AOA Board of Trustees for all of their hard work on H-800.
This is a historic moment for our profession. From here we look towards our future, trusting the AOA leaders during this time of transition to make the necessary decisions to protect and expand GME for osteopathic students.
AACOM is extremely pleased to partner with Campbell University School of Osteopathic Medicine (CUSOM) in North Carolina in announcing their Pre-SOMA Conference on Saturday, April 12, 2014. The event will run from 8:00am – 4:30pm.
Note: CUSOM is one of the newest Osteopathic Medical Schools! A visit to this state-of-the-art medical campus should not be missed!
This free, interactive pre-medical conference is designed especially for aspiring pre-medical students and pre-health advisors to participate in. The events are designed as a way to promote Osteopathic Medicine and awareness of the many wonderful opportunities that come with being an Osteopathic Physician.
Registration and Event Details: http://www.campbell.edu/