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August 3, 1970

Base Lines of Specialty Importance

JAMA. 1970;213(5):862. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170310140049

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With the great diversity which exists in medicine today, it is natural for specialization to have become a dominant force. But unity of effort appears necessary too, since by cooperative effort more can be accomplished. The need for excellence and maintenance of competence exists for each physician within his specialty. Peer judgment in medicine today is based largely on criteria set within one's own specialty. It is based more on the best in current clinical thought than on the core of knowledge gained in earlier days during a graduate training program.

The Oregon Medical Association, in implementing its requirement of continuing medical education for membership, has turned to the specialties for guidance in establishing criteria of minimum continuing education. Each specialty has viewed its own problems of self-renewal separately, but under the cloak of the general standards set by the state association. Criteria differ for each specialty, and have relevance