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Governor's Newsletter

Fall 1999

William E. Dismukes, MD, MACP
Governor, Alabama Chapter

Merger of ACP-ASIM

As most of you are aware, merger of the two national organizations, American College of Physicians and American Society of Internal Medicine, was approved by the Board of Governors and Board of Regents in March 1998, and merger occurred at the national level on July 1, 1998. I am pleased to report that during our Annual Chapter meeting in June 1999, our joint Council of the Alabama ACP and Alabama ASIM approved merger of the two state chapters, and our members also formally approved this merger. All legal documents have been developed and approved and new Articles of Incorporation have now been filed. Our restated by-laws were approved by the Board of Regents on July 17, 1999. Accordingly, our two chapters are now one, with the official name of Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM. The purposes of this non-profit, 501c3 corporation, are exclusively charitable and educational. I am proud to be the first Governor of our merged Chapter. The names of the Officers, Board of Directors and Committee Chairs are provided in this newsletter.

Similarly, the Alabama ACP-ASIM Health Services, a non-profit 501c6 corporation, has been established and approved by our joint Council, our members and finally by the Board of Regents. Richard Esham, MD, formally President, Alabama ASIM, is the new President of Alabama Health Services. Names of the other Officers and Board of Directors are provided in this letter. The primary purposes of this organization are to: (a) unite qualified internists within Alabama for the coordination of their efforts in furthering the practice of internal medicine, and to represent their interests in socioeconomic and related matters; (b) study the scientific, economic, social and political aspects of medicine in order to secure and maintain the best patient care and the highest standard of practice in internal medicine; (c) complement and supplement the aims and activities of the ACP-ASIM; and (d) keep abreast of technological and public policy developments in the areas of medical practice, health care and the organization and delivery of health services.

I am proud of our accomplishments and wish to thank all of the parties who committed to make merger a reality. Both the national and our state organizations have made major strides in responding to the needs of our membership and our patients. Although education remains the primary mission of the College, advocacy, representation, practice of medicine issues and relationships with other medical organizations are other significant matters of our business.

Annual Scientific Meeting Of Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM

Our June 10-12, 1999 meeting at Perdido Beach Resort, Orange Beach, Alabama, was a big success. Over 90 members and their spouses/families attended. We sponsored six Associate (Resident) members from the five different Internal Medicine Residency Training Programs in the state. These six presented clinical vignettes as part of the program. Another ten Associates were also sponsored by our Chapter to attend the meeting (for more details, see the Associate Activities article)

Dr. James Bonner, Program Chairman, deserves kudos for the interesting, informative and balanced program that he assembled. All speakers did an excellent job. Speakers and their topics were as follows:

Oral Hypoglycemic AgentsMichael Carlson, MD, Member, Assistant Professor, Division of Endocrinology, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville.

Treatment of Viral InfectionsJohn W. Gnann, MD, FACP, Associate Professor, Division of Infectious Diseases, UAB School of Medicine.

Management of Congestive Heart FailureBarry Rayburn, MD, Associate Professor, Division of Cardiovascular Disease, Medical Director of Cardiac Transplantation, UAB School of Medicine.

Evaluation and Management of HeadacheRobert Slaughter, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Neurology; Director of Kirklin Headache Clinic, UAB School of Medicine.

Update in GeriatricsWilliam J. Hall, MD, FACP, Regent, ACP-ASIM; Professor of Medicine, Director, Division of Geriatrics, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, NY.

Economic Issues Affecting InternistsAlan R. Nelson, MD, FACP, Associate Executive Vice President, ACP-ASIM, Washington, DC.

Report from Alabama Blue Cross/Blue Shield Patrick E. Ryce, MD, Senior Vice President and Medical Director, and Scott Pechman, Coordinator, Health Management Division, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Alabama.

Special activities included a welcoming reception on Thursday evening; report on activities of the newly merged organization, ACP-ASIM, by Dr. Hall, the College Representative; a Business Meeting during which merger was discussed and approved by the members; a Town Hall Meeting attended by members as well as Dr. Hall and officers of Alabama Chapter; and another reception on Friday evening to honor our Laureate Awardees (see article).

Most members who attended the meeting were very positive about the program, speakers, facilities and special activities. If you did not attend, please plan to join us at our next meeting in early June 2000. We promise another good meeting!

Communication With Your Governor And Officers

I and your other officers want to hear from you. Share your concerns and issues with us so that we might better represent you at the state and national level. By pondering, listening, considering and communicating we have the opportunity to fulfill our professional mission "to enhance the quality and effectiveness of health care by fostering excellence and professionalism in the practice of medicine."

See "Listing of Officers and Committee Chairs" for telephone numbers and e-mail addresses.

Community Based Teaching Awards

The ACP-ASIM has developed a special award for those physicians who have volunteered their time and personal efforts to carry on the honorable tradition of community based teaching (CBT) of medical students and Internal Medicine residents. Nominated physicians must: (1) be a Board-certified internist; (2) be active in a CBT program for two years in any three-year period; (3) have the two years of CBT activity under the sponsorship of the same organization; and (4) an application endorsed by an administrator at a medical school, residency program, fellowship program, or other organization offering the CBT program. If you would like to be considered for this award or would like to nominate a deserving clinician, please contact either Bill Dismukes, MD, MACP, at wed@uab.edu or (205) 975-9944, or Maryella Sirmon, MD, at msirmon@usamail.usouthal.edu or (334) 460-7717.

Web Site For Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM

Dr. Jerome Carter, Division of General Medicine, UAB, and his Informatics Committee, have developed our Chapter Web Site. Contact Dr. Carter or other members of the Informatics Committee if you have ideas/suggestions:

Jerome Carter, MD
(205) 934-2824

Stuart Padove, MD
(205) 780-1963

Richard Cross, MD

Ronald Allison, MD
(334) 471-7914


1999 Mastership ACP-ASIM awarded to William J. Koopman, MD, Chairman, Department of Medicine, University of Alabama School of Medicine at Birmingham.

Masters of the American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine shall have been Fellows who are recommended by the Awards Committee to the Board of Regents because of personal character, positions of honor and influence, eminence in practice or in medical research, or other attainments in science or in the art of medicine. A highly desirable qualification for Mastership is for the individual to have made a significant contribution to the College.

These Alabama Chapter members were elected to Fellowship ACP-ASIM in 1999:

  • Frank Amos Bailey, MD—Birmingham
  • Subramonium K. Das, MD—Selma
  • John E. Feldmann, MD—Mobile
  • John W. Gnann, MD—Birmingham
  • Safwan Jaalouk, MD—Atmore
  • Peter W. Morris, MD—Birmingham
  • Thomas C. Pendleton, MD—Bessemer
  • William R. Stetler, MD—Birmingham
  • Douglas W. Dailey, Jr., MD—Birmingham
  • Robert D. Marks, MD—Alabaster
  • Narasimha R. Boorgu, MD—Sheffield
  • Bryan C. Lipsen, MD—Tuscaloosa
  • Kimberly M. Fagan, MD—Birmingham
  • Charles F. Felgner, MD—Birmingham
  • Louis W. Beck, Jr., MD—Birmingham
  • John A. Maloof, MD—Birmingham
  • William F. Peinhardt, MD—Cullman
  • Ayman O. Soubani, MD—Tuscaloosa
  • Lloyd C. Warr, MD—Alexander City
  • Narayan Krishnamurthy, MD—Tuscaloosa
  • Andrew S. Duxbury, MD—Birmingham

Annual Literature And Medicine Retreat

Robert Lokey, MD, FACP

The Eighth Annual Literature and Medicine Retreat of the Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM was held at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Montgomery, February 27-28, 1999 and was well attended.

The program included Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom, Shakespeare's The Tempest and, for the first time, short fiction and poetry by the same writer in this case, William Carlos Williams.

The discussion of these works was, as usual, lively and revealing under the informed guidance of Dr. Randy Davis, Associate Professor of Literature, Jacksonville State University. The majority of participants have been together for all of the seminars. This familiarity leads to active contributions by all so that expanded understanding and appreciation for the literature is added to that derived by each participant from their own self study.

The program for January 29-30, 2000 will include: A Confederacy of Dunces, by John Kennedy Toole, The Short Stories of Chekhov, The Poems of W. B. Yeats and Tom Stoppard's play, Arcadia. Registration announcements will be mailed out in the early Fall.

Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM Officers And Committee Chairs

Governor—William E. Dismukes, MD
(205) 934-5191

Vice-President—Richard H. Esham, MD
(334) 435-6667

Treasurer—Billy W. Boyd, MD
(334) 273-4400

Board of Directors
Class of 2001
1 year term

Peter W. Morris, MD*
Jefferson Underwood, MD*
Richard L. Chalal, MD**
Dennis C. Delgado, MD**
Class of 2002
2-year term

Jimmy W. Davis, MD*
Bipin Kumar, MD*
Danny T. Hood, MD**
Maryella D. Sirmon, MD**
Class of 2003
3-year term

Elizabeth D. Ennis, M.D*
P. Scott Harris, MD*
David H. MacRae, MD**
Ross B. Vaughn, MD**

* Elected by members
**Elected by Nominating Committee

Committee Chairpersons

Health, Public Policy and Medical Services—Richard H. Esham, MD
(334) 435-5762

Associates—David M. Ennis, MD
(205) 592-5135

Stephen B. Greenberg, MD
(334) 471-7891

Literature and Medicine—Robert H. Lokey, MD
(256) 237-8226

Finance and Budget—Bill W. Boyd, MD
(334) 273-4400

Education, Informatics and Meeting Programs—James R. Bonner, MD
(205) 801-8100

Jerome O. Carter, MD
(205) 975-4386

Credentials/Membership—Robert M. Centor, MD
(205) 975-4889

Nominations & Awards—Maryella D. Sirmon, MD
(334) 343-5004

Medical Students—Craig J. Hoesley, MD
(205) 934-5191

Stephen B. Greenberg, MD
(334) 471-7891

Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM Health Services Officers

President—Richard H. Esham, MD

Treasurer—Billy W. Boyd, MD

Board of Directors—Same as Directors, Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM

Steering Committee

Richard H. Esham, MD – President
William E. Dismukes, MD – Governor
John B. Bass, MD – Past Governor
Billy W. Boyd, MD – Treasurer
Maryella D. Sirmon, MD – Member-at-Large
Stephen A. Davis, MD – 1st Cong. District
David N. Rhyne, MD – 2nd Cong. District
Jimmy W. Davis, MD – 3rd Cong. District
William F. Peinhardt, MD – 4th Cong. District
Don A. Evans, MD – 5th Cong. District
Peter W. Morris, MD – 6th Cong. District
Randall D. Ayers, MD – 7th Cong. District


2000-2001 Associates Committee
David Ennis Chair
John Bass
Steve Greenberg

2000-2001 Nominations and Awards Committee
Maryella Sirmon Chair
Alan Siegal
John Bass
Ross Vaughn

2000-2001 Chapter Meeting/Program Committee
James Bonner Chair
John Bass
Bill Dismukes
David Ennis
Robert Lokey

2000-2001 Literature in Medicine Committee
Robert Lokey Chair
John Bass

2000-2001 Finance and Budget Committee
Bill Boyd Chair
Bill Dismukes
John Bass

2000-2001 Health & Public Policy Committee
Richard Esham Chair
Bill Dismukes Governor
John Bass Past Governor
Billy Boyd Treasurer
Maryella Sirmon At-Large
Stephen Davis 1st District
David Rhyne 2nd District
Jimmy Davis 3rd District
Bill Peinhardt 4th District
Don Evans 5th District
Peter Morris 6th District
Randall Ayers 7th District

2000-2001 Informatics Committee
Jeroan Carter Chair
Stuart Padove
Richard Cross
Ronald Allison

2000-2001 Medical Students Committee
Craig Hoesley Chair
Dennis Boulware
David Ennis
Steve Greenberg

Alabama Associates' Activities

David M. Ennis, MD, FACP

In September 1998, ACP-ASIM Associate representatives from the Internal Medicine training programs in Birmingham met to plan the year's activities for the Associates Program of the ACP-ASIM. These representatives included Sylvia Richey, MD, and Harry Giles, MD (Birmingham Baptist); Lacey Sturdivant, MD and Grace Jenq, MD (UAB); and Alan Kitchens, MD and Kimberly Hillman, MD (Carraway Methodist). With excellent support from pharmaceutical companies, three meetings were held at various locations in the city. Given the requests and interests of the Associates, these meetings concentrated on the business aspects of medicine. They were well received and very informative.

Ramann Nallamala, MD (UAB) represented our Alabama Chapter in the ACP-ASIM national Clinical Vignette competition. His vignette, "A Shocking Presentation of Thyrotoxicosis," discussed an unusual case of amiodarone-induced thyrotoxicosis resulting in rapid atrial fibrillation, which in turn triggered firing of the patient's implantable cardiac defibrillator. Dr. Nallamala did an excellent job and his efforts were greatly appreciated.

At the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM on June 11-12, 1999, Associates representing all of the Internal Medicine Training Programs in the state presented Clinical Vignettes. This year's presenters included Bryen Nerren, MD, (UAB): "54-year-old White Male with Progressive Rash Sporotrichosis"; Kimberly Hillman, MD (Carraway Methodist): "51-year-old White Female with Abdominal Pain and Skin Lesions Dego's Syndrome"; Edward Jackson, MD (Montgomery Baptist): "Lactic Acidosis Complicating HIV Therapy"; Patrick Rhyne, MD, (UAB): "Takayasu's Arteritis Associated with Crohn's Disease"; and Scott McLavy, MD (South Alabama): "Can You Stomach This? Strongyloidiasis."

This year's winning vignette was presented by Jason Tsai, MD (Birmingham Baptist), who discussed an unusual case of "Antiphospholipid Syndrome Causing Colon Infarction." Dr. Tsai will represent the our Chapter at the upcoming national meeting in Philadelphia in April 2000. We are very proud of all of the presenters and the fine job they did. As usual, most participants in the meeting believed that the Clinical Vignettes were the highlight of the annual meeting.

Members of the Associates' Council for the year 1999-2000 have been appointed. These include Sylvia Richey, MD, and Harry Giles, MD (Birmingham Baptist); Kimberly Hillman, MD and Robert Speigel, MD, (Carraway Methodist); Grace Jenq, MD and Suma Desai, MD (UAB); Oto Prokop, MD and Brian Green, MD, (South Alabama); and Victoria Beckman, MD (Montgomery Baptist). These residents will plan upcoming activities of the Associates Program and convey the interests of the Council to their respective program directors.

The Fall meeting of the Alabama Associates will be at 6:30 p.m. on November 10, 1999, at Arman's Restaurant in Birmingham. The speaker will be Diane Deese, Human Resources Director, Sirote & Permutt, PC.

Alabama Chapter Laureate Awards

The Laureate Award honors those Fellows and Masters of the ACP-ASIM who have demonstrated by their example and conduct an abiding commitment to excellence in medical care, education, or research and in their service to their community, their chapter and the ACP-ASIM. Awardees generally are senior physicians and have been Fellows for at least 15 years, with a long history of excellence and peer approval in the specialty of Internal Medicine.

The Alabama Chapter at its annual meeting in June 1999, honored two of our members with Laureate Awards:

C. Glenn Cobbs, MD, FACP
Glenn Cobbs was born in Birmingham, Alabama, attended the University of the South and graduated Cum Laude from Princeton University in 1955. For the following three years, Dr. Cobbs served in the United States Marine Corps., then attended medical school, initially at the University of Alabama and for his last two years at Harvard Medical School from which he graduated in 1963. Dr. Cobbs served as a resident in Medicine at UAB and then completed a fellowship in Infectious Diseases at New York Hospital, Cornell Medical Center.

Dr. Cobbs returned to UAB in 1968 to serve as the first Director and only faculty member of the Division of Infectious Diseases. During his tenure as Director from 1968 until 1990, Dr. Cobbs recruited additional faculty, trained many fellows, and built the program into one of the strongest Divisions of Infectious Diseases in the country. Upon relinquishing the administrative leadership of Infectious Diseases, Dr. Cobbs assumed the position as Chief, Medical Service, Birmingham Veterans Administration Medical Center, which he held until his recent retirement at the end of September 1999.

Dr. Cobbs has been a visiting lecturer at numerous academic medical centers and a highly productive clinical investigator who has made major contributions to our understanding and management of infective endocarditis and other intravascular infections. More importantly, Dr. Cobbs has been an exemplary role model as a physician educator who has demonstrated unwavering commitment to education at the bedside and in the conference room and has continually reminded the administration of UAB of the absolute importance of education as one of the three legs of the traditional academic stool. Now that he has retired, Dr. Cobbs will be sorely missed by both trainees and colleagues.

Dr. Cobbs is married to the former Nanieta Leach of Tuscaloosa and they have 3 sons, John, Charles and Archie and 2 grandchildren. His son, Charles, is a graduate of the University of Alabama School of Medicine and is currently serving on the faculty of Neurosurgery at UAB.

Richard Russell, MD, FACP
Richard Russell was born in Birmingham, Alabama, graduated from Vanderbilt University where he was elected into Phi Beta Kappa and Vanderbilt School of Medicine where he was elected into Alpha Omega Alpha. Dr. Russell did his residency in Medicine at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston and then served in the United States Army Medical Corps. After military service, Dr. Russell did a fellowship in Cardiology at UAB under the tutelage of Dr. Tinsley R. Harrison, and then joined the UAB faculty in 1968. At UAB, Dr. Russell was the co-director of the Myocardial Infarction Research Unit and his studies contributed significantly to our early understanding of acute and chronic coronary artery disease. In 1981, he joined Cardiovascular Associates in Birmingham in the private practice of cardiology and still serves with that group.

Dr. Russell has made many contributions at the local and national levels to medicine in general, and especially to Internal Medicine. At the local level, he served as President, Jefferson County Medical Society; Chairman, Jefferson County Board of Health; Speaker of the House of Delegates and Counselor, Medical Association of the State of Alabama; President of the Alabama Chapter American Heart Association, and Governor of Alabama for the American College of Cardiology. At the national level, Dr. Russell has served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the American College of Cardiology; member of the Board of Regents of the American College of Chest Physicians; and as a member of the Cardiovascular Subspecialty Board of the American Board of Internal Medicine.

Throughout his career Dr. Russell has been highly respected by his peers for his excellence in patient care and his abiding commitment to quality medical care for everyone. He has also been an accomplished teacher and administrator whose service contributions to numerous organizations have been stellar.

Dr. Russell is married to the former Phyllis Hutchinson and they have four children, Scott, Katherine, Meredith, and Stephen, as well as 3 grandchildren. His son, Stephen, is a 1999 graduate of the University of South Alabama School of Medicine.

1999 Alabama Chapter Scientific Meeting— June 10-12, 1999

This Program was supported by unrestricted educational grants from:


Mark Your Calendar

April 13 - 16, 2000
ACP-ASIM Annual Meeting—Philadelphia, PA

June 1-3, 2000
Alabama Chapter ACP-ASIM Scientific Meeting
Perdido Beach Resort, Orange Beach, AL