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Governor's Newsletter

Fall 1997

ACP Endorses ACP Merger

On September 19, 1997, at the Annual Fall ACP Board of Governors Meeting, a nearly unanimous vote in support of the ACP merger was recorded. The next step is for the ASIM House of Delegates to take a similar vote; and if voted on favorably, the executive committees of both organizations will hammer out the details to make this merger a reality.

Although we have a relatively small ASIM chapter in Minnesota, I heard from many of you on this issue. Comments I heard were unanimously in favor of the merger. There was a strong feeling that Internal Medicine needs to speak with one voice to our patients, our students, the public, political bodies, and ourselves. The only frequently asked question was "Why did this take so long?".

The new organization will be known as ACP. Leadership fully expects the new organization to be comprised of the best qualities of each individual organization and divest itself of the unfavorable aspects of each organization. Many of the details of the new organizational structure will have to be worked out. For your information, I thought I would share a few facts with you about the two organizations.

The ACP has 90,000 members (plus 10,000 dues-free medical student members). The ASIM has 20,000 members (of whom over half are also ACP members).

  • The ACP is governed by a Board of Regents and the ASIM is governed by a Board of Trustees.
  • The ACP has a representative body called the Board of Governors and the ASIM is represented by a House of Delegates.
  • The ACP headquarters is in Philadelphia. The ASIM headquarters is in Washington, D.C.
  • The ACP has local representative regions called Chapters and the ASIM has Component Societies.
  • In ACP, the Chapter is lead by a Chapter Governor and the ASIM Component Society is lead by a Component President.

As further information becomes available from the merger, we shall make it available to you. Importantly, we were assured that, at least on a national level, there would not be a dues increase over current ACP dues once the two organizations are merged into ACP.

Hotel Reservations for Chapter Meeting

We have reserved a special block of rooms at the following rates until October 16, 1997.

Single: $93.00
Double: $93.00

Downtown Radisson Plaza Hotel
35 South Seventh Street
Minneapolis, MN 55402

The rooms are available on a first come, first served basis, so make your reservation as early as possible. When making your reservation, be sure to mention you are with the ACP Minnesota Chapter Meeting. To reserve your room, call the hotel directly at 612-339-4900 or 800-333-3333.

REMINDER: We are online!

Visit the Minnesota Chapter Web page. http://www.acponline.org/chapters/mn

The Minnesota State Chapter of the American College of Physicians is pleased to offer a Web site which can be accessed through the ACP's home page at http://www.acponline.org. The address is: http://www.acponline.org/chapters/mn. Peter L. Elkin, M.D. and Donald Deye, M.D., have worked on the Chapter's behalf to provide you with a set of useful links relevant to medical practice in the State of Minnesota. The Web page is fully connected with the College's server. Therefore, it provides access to the College resources such as excerpts from the Annals of Internal Medicine, The ACP Journal Club, and MKSAP questions. Our Web page provides useful links within the State of Minnesota, and in addition, provides access to useful medical links and other internet browsers that will help you go wherever in the electronic world you wish to go.

We sincerely hope that this Web page will serve your interest and help to improve the communication between physicians in our Chapter. Should you have any comments or suggestions regarding the Web page or any of its links, please do not hesitate to contact: elkin.peter@mayo.edu.

Minnesota Chapter Announces Governor-Elect Candidates:

Succession planning is upon us. My term as Governor extends through the National Meeting on April 22-25, 1999 (New Orleans). In order to ensure a smooth transition for the Chapter, candidates run for Governor-Elect this fall and assume an "internship" year in 1998 before taking over as chapter leader in 1999.

Your Nominations Committee has chosen two outstanding candidates to run for Governor-Elect of the Minnesota ACP Chapter. They are (listed alphabetically):

Richard Hellman, M.D., F.A.C.P. and

Tanya Repka, M.D., F.A.C.P.

Both these candidates have been active members in our chapter and are both current members of the Governor's Council.

Doctor Hellman is a staff nephrologist at the Duluth Clinic. Among his many ACP accomplishments, he chaired the By-Laws Committee and did an outstanding job in updating our ACP State Chapter By-Laws several years ago.

Doctor Repka is a specialist in hematology-oncology. Prior to this summer, she practiced at Hennepin County Medical Center. She has recently accepted a position at the University of Minneosta. Among her many ACP accomplishments, she chaired the Scientific Program Committee in 1994 and continues to chair the ACP Women Physician's Committee.

Additional biographical information will be sent to each of you in the near future (from the national office in Philadelphia) with accompanying ballots to select your choice. However, in hopes of getting the membership to know these excellent candidates better, we asked them to both respond to two questions:

  1. What are your ideas to increase participation in college activities on the local level?
  2. What are the most important challenges for our State Chapter?

Doctor Hellman's answer: #1 What are your ideas to increase participation in college activities on the local level?

The American College of Physicians' participation at the local level would begin by involving medical students more. Medical students need to be contacted early and made aware of the American College of Physicians and what the internist does. Emphasis needs to be placed on both the internist as primary care provider to adults, the role of the internist as superprovider, and the role of Internal Medicine training as a gateway to subspecialty medicine. This can be accomplished by early student contact with internists and also inviting students to the regional meeting. Student journal clubs with emphasis on how an internist operates and also rounding with a local internist are important here. Local participation of internists can be enhanced by more regional get-togethers of local internists, ACP sponsorship of local journal clubs, the use of home page and case of the month presentation formats and also further emphasis of the regional meeting. Subspecialists in Internal Medicine need to be made aware of the importance of our baseline Internal Medicine training as a powerful force in the practice of good medicine for patients.

Dr. Repka's answers: #1 What are your ideas to increase participation in college activities on the local level?

Since I first got actively involved in the Minnesota ACP some years ago (after some not so subtle encouragement from a former governor), I have seen the local interest and participation increase. I believe that it will continue to increase if we give our members a reason to be involved. Let's face it, we are all so busy now that an organization must be able to do something for us, for us to want to be involved. We must continue to be active listeners to our membership's needs. This active listening resulted in our changing the fall Scientific Meeting to include state-of-the-art talks and rapid updates by subspecialties. Since that time, the attendance at that meeting has increased and hopefully will to continue to increase through word of mouth and serve as a springboard to attract new members. We must also continue in our efforts to get more women and more young physicians involved, by developing programs that are beneficial to our members. I applaud the associate and medical student initiatives led by other members. This has made a tremendous difference in those areas, and we must continue to focus our energy on those groups. A women's group has also been created for fellowship and to share the problems and solutions of a practicing female physician in today's world. We now need to integrate these programs and create new ones that will benefit other components of our membership. We must inform medical students and physicians about the ACP and the benefits of active local participation. If we continue to educate, have fun, and build collegiality, increased membership and active participation will follow.

Doctor Hellman's answer: #2 What are the most important challenges for our State Chapter?

Several important challenges face our state chapter. We need to continue to increase membership, and we need to continue to emphasize and publicize our regional meeting in order to get a focal point for annual activities. We need to assist in the recruitment of quality medical students into the practice of Internal Medicine. We need to continue to be in the forefront of finding the role of the new internist and in the present internists' struggle to maintain autonomy over the medical aspects of their practice and in the face of the industrialization of medicine. We need to become more focused as a state chapter in developing a set of annual goals that we can follow; for example, a project that we would do each year or support. We need to continue to enhance efforts to unite our state's internists electronically by the development of the home page as we have done and perhaps case of the month formats. We need to continue on the state level and also with national assistance to define what is different about internists and the internists' way of practicing medicine.

Doctor Repka's answer: #2 What are the most important challenges for our State Chapter?

Our biggest challenge is to advance as an organization in which physicians will continue to actively participate and encourage new membership in the busy years to come. The Minnesota ACP is a unique organization and we should continue to publicize this fact. An organization for academic excellence for all internists, both generalists and subspecialists. The organization also provides individual physicians a forum to be heard nationally through our governor and meet face-to-face yearly with the official college representative at our fall Scientific Meeting. But we also need to be a dynamic, continuously changing organization, attentive to the requests and needs of our members. In addition to getting more active young physicians involved, we must also remember to value the more experienced physicians in our organization, as their years of practice and knowledge can teach us much. Young physicians currently have many issues (political, financial and ethical), that the previous generation did not face, and future physicians will have yet different challenges to face. We must utilize our membership to maintain academic and scientific interest while maintaining integrity in a time of monetary and ethical stress. I do not know exactly what shape and direction the organization will take in the future, but I know it will be interesting and exciting to be part of the changes. I am enthusiastic that we can accomplish our goals and that the ACP will continue to be an organization of which we are proud to be members in the years to come.

Dates To Remember

November 14 - 15, 1997: Minnesota State Chapter ACP Meeting, Minneapolis, MN

Annual Session National Meetings:

April 2 - 5, 1998: San Diego
April 22 - 25, 1999: New Orleans
April 13-16, 2000: Philadelphia

Most sincerely,

litin.scott@mayo.eduScott C. Litin, MD, FACP
Governor, Minnesota State Chapter ACP

Contact Information

Heather E Gantzer, MD FACP, Governor, Minnesota Chapter

Chapter Staff:
Katherine Cairns, Executive Director
1043 Grand Ave. #215
St. Paul, MN 55105
Fax: 651-699-7798