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ABMS Hosts First National Health Policy Forum to Address Physician Accountability and Health System Performance Standards

EVANSTON, Ill., March 13 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- In the ongoing effort to ensure physician and healthcare quality standards, the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) is convening consumer, legislative and purchaser stakeholders for a March 17 National Policy Forum in Washington, D.C. ABMS is the not-for-profit organization that oversees U.S. physician certification through its 24 Member Boards.

Keynote speakers at the forum are Janet M. Corrigan, PhD, MBA, president and CEO, National Quality Forum, and Barry M. Straube, MD, chief medical officer, director of the Office of Clinical Standards & Quality Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The forum will include discussions with panelists representing national consumer organizations, purchaser coalitions and U.S. Senate staff to address the role of physician certification standards in achieving quality care while containing costs. Panelists include Helen Darling, MA, BS, president, National Business Group on Health; Peter V. Lee, JD, executive director, National Health Policy Pacific Business Group on Health; Joyce Dubow, senior advisor, AARP Office of Policy and Strategy; Debra L. Ness, MS, president, National Partnership for Women and Families; Chris Dawe, professional staff, Senate Finance Committee; and Kavita Patel, MD, MSHS, deputy staff director for the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee of Senator Edward M. Kennedy.

The focal point of the forum will be how ABMS and its Member Boards can best interact with public and private stakeholders in enhancing health system performance to benefit American consumers.

For the past 75 years, ABMS and its Member Boards have been a leading and trusted resource for consumers and healthcare professionals seeking information on physician qualifications, first by establishing board certification, then recertification and, in recent years, ABMS Maintenance of Certification(R) (ABMS MOC(R)).

"ABMS and its Member Boards are an important part of physician accountability in the quality movement," said Kevin B. Weiss, MD, ABMS president and CEO. "We are confident that this forum will help us collaborate with public and private stakeholders so that we remain responsive to the public's need for a more effective healthcare system."

The need for reliable information is greater than ever as the quest to improve the quality and efficiency of medical care in the United States has become paramount. Recently, ABMS and its Member Boards launched the ABMS 2008-2011 Enhanced Public Trust Initiative, which is designed to examine how ABMS can be responsive to the need for increasing public transparency in physician accountability and to guide the design and implementation of new programs, research and expanded ABMS resource offerings for the public.

About ABMS. Now in its 75th year, American Board of Medical Specialties is the organization overseeing physician certification in the United States. It assists its 24 Member Boards in their efforts to develop and implement educational and professional standards for the evaluation and certification of physician specialists. ABMS Member Boards provide physician certification information to ABMS for its certification verification service programs. ABMS is recognized by the key healthcare credentialing accreditation entities as a primary equivalent source of board certification data for medical specialists. Patients can visit or call toll-free 1-866-ASK-ABMS to see if their physician is board certified by an ABMS Member Board. For more information about ABMS visit or call (847) 491-9091.

The 24 Member Boards that make up the ABMS Board Enterprise covers over 145 medical specialties and subspecialties include: American Board of Allergy and Immunology, American Board of Anesthesiology, American Board of Colon and Rectal Surgery, American Board of Dermatology, American Board of Emergency Medicine, American Board of Family Medicine, American Board of Internal Medicine, American Board of Medical Genetics, American Board of Neurological Surgery, American Board of Nuclear Medicine, American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, American Board of Ophthalmology, American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery, American Board of Otolaryngology, merican Board of Pathology, American Board of Pediatrics American Board of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, American Board of Plastic Surgery, American Board of Preventive Medicine, American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology, American Board of Radiology, American Board of Surgery, American Board of Thoracic Surgery, and American Board of Urology.

SOURCE American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS)
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