AMA-RFS Adopts New Policies. JAMA. 2000;284(3):290. doi:10.1001/jama.284.3.290
Prepared by Ashish Bajaj, Department
of Resident and Fellow Services, American Medical Association.
At its Annual Meeting in June, the American Medical Association Resident
and Fellow Section (AMA-RFS) discussed several resolutions and reports concerning
resident representation, the quality of residency programs, due process and
RFS internal operations. The following actions were adopted by the RFS Assembly.
Increasing Resident and Fellow Awareness of Local
Representation. This calls on the Accreditation Council for Graduate
Medical Education (ACGME) to require residency training institutions to provide
all residents and fellows with the names, contact information, and responsibilities
of the resident physicians serving on hospital committees. The resolution
also asks the ACGME to require institutions to disseminate the full-text due
process rules for residents and fellows. During testimony on this resolution,
many residents indicated that they did not know the names of the resident
physicians on their hospital committees. In addition, several residents indicated
that they did not know their institutions' policies on resident grievances.
Publishing Evaluations of Residency Programs,
a report prepared by the RFS Governing Council, asks the ACGME to publish
the accreditation letter sent to each program after that program is reviewed
by a Residency Review Committee. The letter includes the number of years of
accreditation approved by the ACGME and lists the program's strengths and
weaknesses. The report also asks for the ACGME to publish any responses by
the program to the accreditation review letter. This would allow programs
to provide an explanation and report on their progress in correcting deficiencies.
In addition, the report asks the RFS to present accreditation actions in an
accessible and understandable format on the AMA Fellowship and Residency Electronic
Interactive Database and to renew its request to the ACGME to require anonymous
surveys of residents.
Due Process for Housestaff in all Loss-of-Employment
Situations. This asks the RFS to support proposed modifications to
the ACGME's Institutional Requirements that would allow a resident to exercise
a grievance process if the resident's contract is not being renewed, or in
the case of any other action that would threaten the career of a resident
physician. The current Institutional Requirements mandate a grievance provision
if the resident is terminated in the middle of a training year.
Future Growth and Development of the AMA-RFS.
This calls on the RFS to create a standing committee on long-range planning
and development, whose structure and responsibilities are defined by the RFS
Video Conference Capability for Assembly Meetings. The RFS Governing Council is asked to study and report on the feasibility
of implementing remote conference capability for Assembly meetings.
Electronic Searchable RFS Proceedings and Digest of
Actions. This asks the RFS to publish its Digest of Actions, which
contains the past 10 years of RFS actions and policy, on the RFS Web site
and to explore ways of making this information searchable.