• Leading Physician Well-being FAQ

    What is the Leading Physician Well-being program? 

    The AAFP has been an early leader in improving physician well-being. We are excited to continue offering the Academy's Leading Physician Well-Being certificate program (LPW), which is an extension of our previous work with our Physician Health First initiative. This program was originally developed with the generous funding of the United Health Foundation. 

    LPW is a unique certificate program designed to equip family physicians with the knowledge, experience and leadership skills necessary for leading change to improve physician and clinician well-being within their practices and organizations. At the successful completion of the program, scholars will earn a physician leadership certificate and be recognized as thought leaders and spokespeople for physician well-being. This program will consist of a cohort of 150 family physicians and other primary care scholars annually.  

    LPW aims to spearhead impactful change in health care practices and organizations. This program will include didactic education and an applied project utilizing a combination of in-person and online learning focused on topics of physician well-being and theories around leading change and implementing performance improvement. The three foundational elements of this program are:

    1. Leadership Development 
    2. Physician Well-being
    3. Performance Improvement 

    Why is this program so important? 

    Family physicians now, more than ever, are needed to provide leadership within their practices and organizations. The Quadruple Aim states that improving the work life of health care professionals is essential to enhancing patient experience, reducing costs, and improving population health. Therefore, improving physician well-being is the key to improving the overall state of  in the United States.  LPW provides the tools needed for physicians to feel confident stepping up to lead during a time of organizational challenge and uncertainty. In addition to learning how to adapt with change during uncertain times, scholars will have the opportunity to network and develop professional relationships with colleagues for support and guidance. 

    How was the Leading Physician Well-being program developed? 

    LPW was originally developed with funds from the United Health Foundation . 

    What is this program's vision? 

    LPW envisions scholars who successfully complete the program are equipped to implement innovative solutions and best practices, improving the well-being of colleague physicians and other team members. The AAFP envisions every scholar gaining the confidence to be change leaders and the capability to successfully implement improvements in their practices and organizations. The resulting impact includes sustained physician well-being and improved patient outcomes. LPW graduates will constitute and engage in a national community of physician well-being champions.

    What will this program consist of? 

    LPW consists of a 10-month series of three core sessions (two in-person and one livestreamed), five webinars and ongoing, regular online activities. All activities facilitate the development of a supportive learning community. LPW combines didactic education and an applied project that includes virtual, online touchpoints between core sessions. Online learning facilitates familiarity with the core topics. The livestreamed and in-person learning sessions facilitate skill building and advanced learning. 

    Foundational Components:

    • Leadership Development (Change management, leading teams, leading through influence, agile leadership principles, etc.)
    • Physician Well-being (Knowledge base, best practices, evidence-based solutions, etc.)
    • Performance Improvement (Designing and implementing improvements, PDSA, PI tools, project planning, etc.)

    Home Group Learning Community:

    In addition to the scheduled in-person sessions and webinar sessions, there LPW offers an online learning community. Here, scholars have a chance to work on their PI projects, discuss topics from webinars, discuss hot topics and continue conversations that came up during  in-person events.

    Additionally, each scholar is highly encouraged to develop a plan and initiate implementation of a Systems Well-being Improvement Project (SWIP) within their practice or organization. The PI project provides experience  designing and implementing an improvement plan. It is expected that scholars completing the PI-CME project finish by the following year.  

    PI project themes include workplace culture, employee appreciation, burnout, wellness committees, residency programs, diversity, equity & inclusion, workflow, and narrative medicine.

    1:1 coaching:

    All scholars will have the opportunity to connect with their Home Group leader for 1:1 coaching throughout their SWIP project as well other topics agreed upon between the Home Group’s leader and scholar.  

    Home Group:

    Each cohort is split into smaller home groups that are lead by core faculty members of LPW alums. Home Groups provide a smaller learning community in which scholars can connect with one another and consult their home group facilitators for guidance on projects or any other pertinent topics.

    Who are the Home Group Leaders? 

    Home Groups are lead by our core faculty members and home group facilitators who are LPW alumni.

    Can you tell me more about the Performance Improvement project?

    During the cohort year, scholars are tasked with implementing a Systems Well-being Improvement Project (SWIP). Each project impacts organizational change and allows scholars the opportunity to demonstrate leadership of a well-being intervention within their organization. This activity provides scholars with the opportunity to examine relevant data, develop a response plan, and execute the plan over a period long enough to yield measurable outcomes all while earning PI-CME credit and ABFM points towards their maintenance of certification and/or fellow certification. Home Group faculty will support scholars through each step of the SWIP. Assignments are due throughout the cohort year. Scholars have until the year after their program ends to complete their project for PI-CME credit and ABFM points. Please note that scholars will have one year after their cohort year ends to complete their SWIP project for PI-CME credit.

    Who is eligible to participate and what are the requirements? 

    All AAFP active members are eligible for LPW.  To achieve sustained and widespread impact, this initiative seeks to include a diverse LPW cohort of family physicians. New physicians (first seven years of practice), women in medicine, those underrepresented in medicine, and those who work in rural practices or with other vulnerable populations are encouraged to apply.   

    In 2024, we are proud to offer LPW to nonmembers who work in other primary care specialties. Please note: At this time we will accept only M.D. and D.O. applicants.

    Are student or resident members eligible to register?

    Due to the time commitment, students are not eligible for LPW. Residents may apply if they have commitment and time support from their residency program. As part of the application process, residents must submit a letter of support from their resident program director.

    Students and residents who are interested in leadership development are strongly encouraged to apply to the AAFP Foundation’s Emerging Leaders Institute.

    When does the application period open and when will I find out if I am selected? 

    Applications are now open and are due by June 10, 2024. In previous cohort years, LPW has received more than 300 applications. Therefore, it is strongly suggested all applicants apply early. Please note: Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, with final decision e-mails being sent no later than June 28, 2024. 

    Please note that incomplete application packets will not be considered.

    How much does it cost to participate? 

    The LPW Certificate program costs $2,500 for AAFP Members and $3,000 for nonmembers. Scholars are responsible for all travel and housing expenses for in-person activities, as well as food and beverage costs not covered during sessions. Full payment is due no later than July 31, 2024.

    Are scholarships available? 

    Yes, scholarships are available thanks to generous funding from the United Health Foundation and the AAFP’s New Physician Retention Program. At this time, all AAFP members are eligible. Scholarship applications can be found within the program application. Scholarships of $2,500 and $1,000 are available and will be distributed as reimbursement at the conclusion of the program.

    Is CME credit offered for this program? 

    The LPW program offers CME credit for qualifying activities. The exact amount of credit is still under review. In the past, the program has offered at least 50 CME hours to scholars who claim credit. In addition, scholars have the opportunity to claim both AAFP CME credit and ABFM certification points for their performance improvement projects.

    How long is the program? 

    Scholars participate in LPW for 10 months. The fourth cohort will run from August 2024 through April 2025. Baseline assessments, access to the learning platform and pre-work is provided in July 2024. Please note: On-boarding activities and assignments are due prior to Webinar 1 in August.

    See the full schedule here.

    Will travel be required? 

    Yes, travel will be required for two in-person core sessions in September 2024 at Phoenix, Arizona, and March 2025 at Hilton Head, South Carolina. There will be no accommodations to participate remotely in the in-person core sessions.  As a reminder, scholars are responsible for all travel and housing expenses, as well as food and beverage costs not covered during core sessions.

    Where will the in-person sessions be located?

    Activity A will be held in Phoenix, Arizona, as part of the AAFP’s FMX on September 27, 28 and 29. We will end at noon local time on September 29. Room block information will be shared with selected scholars.
    Activity C will be held on Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, as part of the AAFP’s Physician Health and Well-being Conference on March 23 - 24, 2025. Room block information will be shared with selected scholars once available. Please note that while it is not required to attend the the Physician Health and Well-being Conference, LPW scholars can take advantage of a discounted registration fee. Plus, you’ll love the conference!

    What are the benefits and incentives to participating in this program? 

    At the successful completion of the program, scholars earn a Leading Physician Well-being certificate and the AAFP recognizes scholars as thought leaders and spokespeople for physician well-being. Scholars receive AAFP CME credit for participating.  

    Other benefits include:

    • Networking, having peer-to-peer support and the ability to reach out to others for questions, support and guidance. 
    • Being equipped to become an effective leader, agent of change and physician well-being expert.
    • Preparation for further career development as a physician well-being leader and champion. 
    • Opportunity to complete a PI-CME project that has a direct impact on your organization.

    What is the time commitment for participation in this program?

    This program utilizes a part-time fellowship model requiring continuous engagement throughout the program’s duration. Outside of the five scheduled webinars, livestream and two in person activities, scholars should plan on dedicating 5% (1 hour/week) of their time over the 10-month period. The time will increase slightly when major SWIP project deliverables are due. This includes preparation for and follow-up with your home group leader after live sessions and webinars. These follow-ups are especially focused on understanding the needs of the scholar's practice and organization, identifying opportunities for improvement, and designing and implementing an applied improvement project. 

    Who can I contact if I have more questions regarding this program?

    Contact the Leading Physician Well-being Program team at LPW@aafp.org.

    What is the cancellation and refund policy?

    Full refund – The AAFP must receive notice of cancellation no later than September 6, 2024. Requests for full cancellations will be refunded less a $50 administrative fee.

    Partial refund – The AAFP must receive notice of cancellation no later than October 31, 2024 to receive a partial refund of $1,250. Cancellations or no-shows after this date are not eligible for a refund.

    Please allow up to four weeks for delivery of refund. Fees will be refunded using the same method of payment used to pay the AAFP. This policy covers registration and ticketed events.

    The AAFP is not responsible for monies registrants may have spent on penalty or nonrefundable airline tickets or hotel deposits in the event this course is canceled or sold out. Before purchasing your airline ticket, make sure you have received your registration and hotel confirmation. If a program is canceled by the AAFP, every effort will be made to notify registrants at least 30 days prior to the first day of the course, and registration fees will be refunded.

    You can notify the AAFP of cancellation by:
    Phone: (800) 274-2237
    Email: aafp@aafp.org
    Fax: (913) 906-6075
    Mail: AAFP, Attn: Member Resource Center, 11400 Tomahawk Creek Parkway, Leawood, KS 66211