Richard H. Gelberman, MD
September 25, 2006
I congratulate Drs. David Lichtman and Randy Culp on an excellent Annual Meeting in Washington D.C. The feedback that we have received thus far has been positive. We look forward to hearing additional impressions in response to the Annual Meeting evaluation survey which was sent out two weeks ago. Your feedback will help us develop what comes next in Seattle.
The purpose of this report is to let you know what happened at our most recent Council meeting, which was held just before and after the Annual meeting.
Scott Kozin, MD will continue as chair of a key committee, the Courses and Meetings Advisory Committee. Allen Bishop, MD, who has been named chair-elect, will move into leadership of CMAC at the Annual Meeting in 2007. In an effort to assess the impact of our courses, we are creating an evaluation matrix for use before courses, and three months after courses, to gauge course impact on long-term learning and patient care.
The Diversity Task Force, co-chaired by Amy Ladd, MD and Julie Katarincic, MD proposed a new goal for our strategic plan. Their proposal, which was approved by Council, formed the basis of our newly devised 11th goal: The ASSH will encourage diversity and cultural awareness among its members and leaders in order to be responsive to the needs of its patients.
Robert Szabo, MD, newly appointed chair of the Self Assessment Exam Committee, is working to create a dramatically improved examination -- with well constructed questions and answers and with an emphasis on providing the best available evidence. The exam, which will become more and more innovative over time, will be an important component of the ASSH effort to assist our members with the ABOS and ABPS Maintenance of Certification processes. Bob’s immediate objective is to improve the quality of the questions by providing better training to the committee. Ultimately, the committee will be able to create a databank of high quality evidence based questions for future use.
As a way to foster more collaboration with related organizations, Thomas Russell, MD, Executive Director of the American College of Surgeons, and Tony Rankin, MD, Second Vice President of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Richard F. Kyle, MD, AAOS President and Andrew N. Pollak, MD, BOS Chairman were invited to our meeting. Our relationships with the ACS and AAOS are central to our making progress with several broad initiatives including emergency call and evidence based practice.
Tom Trumble, MD led a discussion on Publications which led to several outcomes. The Website Committee (Don Lee, MD, chair) and Publications and Products Advisory Committee (Matt Tomaino, MD, chair) will work together to make available relevant commercial (non ASSH) hand surgery publications on the ASSH website. Also, Council asked the Publications and Products Advisory Committee to create three new compelling publications (including Pod-casts, etc) per year.
Three additional new task forces have been formed. A Governance Task Force, co-chaired by Drs. Tom Trumble and Ghazi Rayan, will evaluate the organizational structure of the Society in an effort to find ways to improve how committees function and how they communicate with Council. A new Resident Education Curriculum Task Force, chaired by Martin Boyer, MD, will investigate ways to substantially improve the orthopaedic and plastic surgery resident experience in hand surgery. A new Research Task Force, chaired by Kevin Chung, MD, is taking stock of our capabilities and opportunities with the goal of developing a vigorous new strategic plan in the area of hand surgery research. Other new task forces will focus on Maintenance of Certification (Steve Glickel, MD) and on International Relations (Arnold Peter Weiss, MD). I will provide an update on the significant activities of these task forces, as they occur, in my “Presidential Alert” messages in the Weekly Member Update.
It is an honor for me to serve as your President this year. After the winter Council meeting and again next summer, I’ll let you know the new directions that Council has taken. In the meantime, please contact me with your ideas and recommendations.