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Governor's Newsletter
Fall 2001

Phillip E. Griffin, MD, FACP
Governor, Montana Chapter

Governor's Message

October greetings to all Montana ACP-ASIM members. If you are like me, you are finally settling down after the events of September 11. We are all facing questions from community members and patients concerning the bioterrorism issue. Please note the article following my message, on page 2, from ACP-ASIM entitled, "Bioterrorism Resource Center".

Our Annual Meeting at Chico Hot Springs in August was a great success. Program Chairman Mike Herring, MD of Bozeman did an outstanding job of putting together this year's meeting. The facility at Chico worked extremely well for a group our size. We all enjoyed the ambiance of the beautiful Paradise Valley despite the presence of a nearby forest fire. Many of the family members who attended enjoyed the extra curricular activities that Mike had arranged. These included the use of the hot plunge at Chico Hot Springs itself as well as diverse activities such as water color classes, horseback riding, fly fishing and hiking in the nearby valley as well as in Yellowstone Park.

Our faculty members from out of state did an outstanding job. We enjoyed updates on depression, gastrointestinal disease, infectious disease and venous thromboembolism. It was wonderful to have Dr. Bob Kreisberg update us on lipid lowering therapy.

Our own local faculty members did a great job. Thanks to Chris Corsi, MD of Missoula, James Loeffelholz, MD of Bozeman; Anders Persson, MD of Bozeman; and Tom Rowe, MD, of Livingston for updates and case studies. In addition we had an excellent talk on medical malpractice issues by Mr. Larry Riley of Missoula, Montana.

Our Annual Banquet was highlighted by the presentation of a Laureate Award to Elton Adams, MD of Great Falls. Elton has been a stellar member of the Montana Chapter for many years and has functioned as our Treasurer for as long as I can remember. He also of course presented his annual Osler Bingo, which remains an Annual Meeting highlight. Congratulations to Elton on receiving this fine award. Previous Laureate recipients include Harold Braun, MD; F. John Allaire, MD; William Reynolds, MD; Warren Bowman, MD; Richard F. LeBlonde, MD; and Ronald H. Smith, MD.

Our 2002 Meeting will be August 22 through 24 in Missoula, Montana. Program Chairman Michael Caldwell, MD with the assistance of Eric Hughson, MD and Gary Walter, MD, are busy putting together a program. Mark your calendars now for an exciting gathering in western Montana next August.

Bioterrorism Resource Center

The September 11 terrorist attacks precipitated a wave of concern about the possibility of bioterrorism—the use of germs and chemicals as weapons of mass taking of lives. In recent weeks, the concerns have become a reality with the onslaught of Anthrax cases. In an effort to educate physicians and provide up-to-date information on biological terrorism, ACP-ASIM has developed the Bioterrorism Resource Center on the College website (http://www.acponline.org/bioterro/).

The information featured in the Bioterrorism Resource Center is broken down into the following sections:

  • Therapeutic Recommendations for Exposure to or Disease Caused by Biological Weapons — Up-to-date recommendations from the CDC and other organizations regarding treatment, exposure, research, etc.

  • Essential Medical Knowledge — General medical knowledge on biological and chemical weapons

  • News — Current events and news releases regarding bioterrorism.

  • Additional Resources — Helpful resources to assist in the gathering of information on bioterrorism; websites, journals, recordings, speakers.

  • College Activities — ACP-ASIM initiatives and efforts to aid physicians in the battle against biological and chemical threats.

ACP-ASIM encourages all physicians to visit the Bioterrorism Resource Center often, as physicians are the first line of defense against bioterrorism. It is the intent of the College to be a comprehensive resource for the medical community on biological and chemical threats in an effort to prevent the sense of alarm and panic.

Education and preparation are key components in promoting an efficient, expeditious approach to bioterrorism. Visit the Bioterrorism Resource Center (http://www.acponline.org/bioterro/index.html) and join ACP-ASIM in the campaign to promote a "Don't panic, prepare" campaign against bioterrorism.

End-of-Life Care Patient Education Brochures and Doctor's Tip Sheet Available

In September, the Center for Ethics and Professionalism inaugurated its Patient Education and Caring: End-of-Life (PEACE) Series by releasing three patient education brochures designed to guide patients through various stages of palliative and end-of-life care. The brochures offer clearly-worded advice for patients and caregivers and are suitable for distribution in doctor's offices. The available brochures are:

  • "When You Have Pain at the End of Life"
  • "Living with a Serious Illness: Talking to your Doctor When the Future is Uncertain"
  • "Making Medical Decisions for a Loved One at the End of Life"

Also available is "Improving Your End of Life Care Practice," a tip sheet for doctors, with suggestions on how to identify patients who would benefit from the brochures and tips on how to "break the ice" in face-to-face discussions about sensitive end-of-life issues.

The patient brochures are available at no charge in packages of 50 each from the Center (call 800-523-1546, ext. 2839 or e-mail ssmith@acponline.org); they can also be downloaded in PDF format on the College's web site at (http://www.acponline.org/ethics/patient_education.htm).

For further information on the End-of-Life Care project, contact Lois Snyder, JD, at 800-523-1546, ext. 2835 (mailto:lsnyder@acponline.org) or go to the Center for Ethics and Professionalism page on the College web site at (http://www.acponline.org/ethics/eolc.htm).

Experience Annual Session—Philadelphia Style

Join the College April 11-14, 2002 and be a part of Annual Session 2002 in Philadelphia. Experience over 275 sessions covering the spectrum of internal medicine and the subspecialties. Upholding tradition, ACP-ASIM promises to offer a rich educational experience with an emphasis placed on content that is clinically relevant and practice oriented. Be Sure Not to Miss...

Clinical Pearls—
Remember those words of wisdom from your most respected clinical teachers? Those Pearls were based on an experience of depth and knowledge of medical literature of remarkable scope. Pearls are noteworthy for their clarity, timelessness, and clinical applicability.

Introduced at the 2001 Annual Session and an instant hit, Clinical Pearls rekindles the joy of bedside learning, using a highly engaging, case-based format. With the audience-response keypad-system, you'll have a chance to test the depth of your clinical acumen. You'll leave each session with a rich collection of Pearls, ready to be applied directly to the patients.

Multiple Small Feedings of the Mind—
Rated by many as the best of Annual Session, Multiple Small Feedings of the Mind uses a creative format to address some of the most common, yet challenging or controversial, patient-management issues. In these highly focused, fast-paced sessions, faculty offers answers to some of the most frequently faced dilemmas in patient care.

The Learning Center—
Experience the excitement of the Learning Center. Refine your techniques in a variety of office-based examination and procedural skills. Take advantage of small group or individual tutorials with experts in the field. The Learning Center is unique to Annual Session and offers a wide range of opportunities for closely supervised, hands-on practice. Become familiar with procedures and examinations you don't perform on a routine basis. Try out the latest software for clinical information management and patient care. The Learning Center is a dynamic collection of hands-on activities, which you can immediately apply to your clinical practice.

Keep up to date on the year's most important published papers in the subspecialty areas. Learn significant findings and their impact on patient care. Nationally recognized faculty reviews the literature and presents the year's highlights.

Experience Annual Session...

ACP-ASIM Annual Session 2002
April 11 - 14, 2002
Philadelphia, PA

Registration and other meeting information is available online (http://www.acponline.org), or contact Customer Service at 800-523-1546, extension 2600. Early sign-up is encouraged for the best selection of workshops and seating at breakfast/lunch sessions.