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Resident Physician Forum
February 10, 1999


Author Affiliations

Prepared by Ashish Bajaj, Department of Resident and Fellow Services, American Medical Association.

JAMA. 1999;281(6):572. doi:10.1001/jama.281.6.572

At its Interim Meeting this past December, the American Medical Association House of Delegates (AMA-HOD) considered many resolutions and reports submitted by the AMA Resident Physicians Section (RPS). The resolutions summarized below concern HOD actions on these resolutions. A complete summary of all HOD actions is available at http://www.ama-assn.org/meetings/public/int1998/reports/reports.htm.

Adjusting the Size of the Educational Pipeline. This report stemmed from an RPS resolution calling for the AMA and other organizations to develop recommendations regarding the number of students graduating from US medical schools, because it is widely believed that the United States will soon have an oversupply of physicians. In an effort to develop a consensus opinion, the AMA's Council on Medical Education will hold an open hearing on this topic in the spring of 1999.

Definition of a Resident. This report recommended an expansion and clarification of the AMA's definition of the term resident and a change in the section name from the Resident Physicians Section to the Resident and Fellow Section. The new name, which applies only to membership status in the AMA, includes physicians who are participating in a structured educational program after residency training (eg, pursuing an MBA) and physicians on active duty in the military or Public Health Service who have not completed residency.

Training in Reimbursement Coding During Residency. This resolution asked the AMA to encourage residency programs to incorporate practice management training and proper reimbursement cod-ing and documentation instruction in their curricula.

Response to the Federation of State Medical Boards Recommendations on Licensure. This resolution called on the AMA to collaborate with other organizations to develop model legislation on state licensure requirements that protect public safety. The resolution was submitted in response to Federation of State Medical Boards proposals regarding licensure for residents (please see last week's Resident Forum column).

Use of Social Security Numbers in Student Loan Accounts. This resolution asked the AMA to work with student loan servicing agencies and other agencies to end the use of social security numbers as account numbers, which places borrowers at risk for fraudulent activity.

Truth in Nutrition Labeling. This report was prepared in response to a resolution from the RPS asking the AMA to encourage the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to require that manufacturers publish nutritional information regarding transfatty acid levels on food packaging. The original resolution was not adopted because the HOD learned that the FDA has just recently proposed this as a new requirement.

Increasing Antibiotic Resistance Awareness. This resolution asked the AMA to encourage health agencies to educate the public about the judicious use of antibiotics and the increasing problem of antibiotic-resistant pathogens. The HOD reaffirmed current AMA policy, which it felt adequately addressed the intent of this resolution.

Treatment of Chlamydia trachomatis. This resolution asked the AMA to encourage state health departments to ensure that patients infected with Chlamydia trachomatis receive proper medical and follow-up treatment. Although there was considerable support for the intent of the resolution, the HOD felt that current AMA policy already addressed this topic so current policy was reaffirmed.