AAFP Testifies to Congress in Support of Family Medicine Training
American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Board Chair Warren Jones, M.D., Ridgeland, Miss., recently testified before a subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee to urge Congress to continue supporting training in family medicine. Dr. Jones sought $169 million for the Public Health Service Act, Title VII, Section 747 (the section covering the primary care and dentistry clusters), which would include $96 million for family medicine training in fiscal year 2004. President Bush’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2004 includes only $11 million for all Title VII Health Professions Programs and eliminates funding for general training programs, including primary care, interdisciplinary community projects, and training for diversity and public health. To illustrate the need for continued Title VII funding, Dr. Jones cited Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, and the University of Mississippi, Jackson, as examples of institutions that used these federal funds to send physicians to practice in rural locations. In response to Dr. Jones’ testimony, Rep. Don Sherwood, (R-Pa.) said, “I think we have lost sight of something, and that is that every person needs a family physician. (Patients) go from one specialist to another, and sometimes the whole picture is not looked at.” Dr. Jones’ written testimony also gave support to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) and for rural health initiatives.
New Patient Safety Conference to Be Held in Chicago, September 18–19
The first “National Ambulatory Primary Care Research and Education Conference on Patient Safety” will be held in Chicago September 18–19, 2003. The purpose of the conference is to provide a forum for leaders of primary care physician organizations and leading primary care educators and researchers to discuss current research and educational program development in ambulatory patient safety, and to stimulate the dissemination of these programs. The conference will consist of plenary presentations of 16 research projects and 16 education projects, followed by 20- to 30-minute discussion sessions. The conference is sponsored by the AAFP Developmental Center for Research and Evaluation in Patient Safety-Primary Care, the Primary Care Organizations Consortium, and the National Patient Safety Foundation, with assistance from the Medical Group Management Association, and is funded by a grant from the AHRQ. For more information on the conference, go online towww.aafp.org/ptsafetyconf.xml.
‘Physicians with Heart’ Project Headed to Kyrgyzstan in October
The 11th annual Physicians with Heart airlift has been scheduled for October 8–19 in Kyrgyzstan. Airlift delegates will travel to Kyrgyzstan to verify delivery of the donated pharmaceuticals and medical supplies, provide education on family practice to the country’s physicians, and participate in a “children’s project” that helps young children in orphanages and schools. Physicians interested in volunteering for this humanitarian effort should contact Linda Cannata at Heart to Heart International by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone at 405-787-5200, ext. 100. Physicians with Heart is an international project sponsored by a coalition of the AAFP, the AAFP Foundation, and Heart to Heart International, a humanitarian aid organization based in Olathe, Kan. The partnership’s mission is to mobilize resources to improve health, to provide medical education, and to foster the development of family practice worldwide. Physicians with Heart has delivered more than $60 million in aid to former Soviet Republics and Vietnam since 1993. For more information on this humanitarian project, go online towww.aafp.org/airlift.xml.
First Issue ofAnnals of Family Medicine Is Available Online
The first issue of Annals of Family Medicine was mailed on May 30 and is available online free of charge on the Annals Web site atwww.annfammed.org. Annals publishes peer-reviewed research to support the field of generalist health care. The July/August issue will be mailed and available online July 28. Annals is a collaborative effort of the AAFP, the American Board of Family Practice, the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine, the Association of Departments of Family Medicine, the Association of Family Practice Residency Directors, and the North American Primary Care Research Group. The managing editor of the journal is Claire Zimmerman, Seattle, and the editor of the journal is Kurt Stange, M.D., Ph.D., Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland. Active AAFP members, second- and third-year family practice residents, and members of the other sponsoring organizations can request a free one-year subscription by returning the postcard that was included in the May/June 2003 issue. Others may purchase subscriptions to the journal or access it free online.
Senator Grassley Receives National Leadership Award from AAFP
The AAFP recently awarded Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa) with its National Leadership in Government Service Award, which honors persons who have made significant and meaningful contributions to improving the nation’s health care through programs, policies, or research leadership. Grassley, who is the second recipient of this award, was selected because of his long-term support of family medicine issues, especially those affecting family physicians in rural areas. Elected to the U.S. Senate in 1980, Grassley chairs the Senate Finance Committee, which has jurisdiction over a broad range of health issues, including Medicare.
Register Online for AAFP’s 2003 Scientific Assembly in New Orleans
The AAFP’s 2003 Annual Scientific Assembly is being held October 1–5 in New Orleans. The deadline for early registration and a special rate is July 9. Attendees can earn continuing medical education credits by attending courses taught by national experts on diagnoses, treatments, practice techniques, and clinical skills for a variety of conditions. The exhibit area will include hundreds of companies displaying the latest in pharmacology, information technology, medical devices, and practice management tools. For more information on the Assembly or to register online, go tohttps://www.aafp.org/events/assembly.html.