Montana Governor's Newsletter August 2020

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Steven J. Gerstner, MD, FACP, ACP Governor

Steven J. Gerstner, MD, FACP, ACP Governor


Governor's Message

Dear colleagues,

It is so cliché’ but I am going to say it anyway - what a crazy time we are in! Coronavirus, social and political unrest, economic disaster among several issues that are having such an impact on our personal and professional lives, it feels like we are in a bad post apocalyptic movie that just won't end. Unfortunately, it appears that we in Montana are now experiencing the surge in COVID cases that we were expecting earlier on and as practitioners of internal medicine we all are on the front line whether we work in the hospital, clinic, or both.

Since our last communication with you the Governor's Council held our biannual spring meeting (via zoom of course!). You will note that the council membership is smaller as some members have completed their terms and others who have not been active have elected to go off - my thanks to all for the work they have done on our behalf. The council has named a nominating committee who will look for those of you who are interesting in serving. We hope to have some names for you to vote on at our chapter meeting in September.

Speaking of our chapter meeting, it has been decided to hold this as a virtual meeting given the current state of affairs. We do have some exciting ideas about this however as going virtual does open up some ways we can expand participation, as people will not have to travel across our state to attend. You will be receiving more about this as plans unfold but I am looking forward to a great meeting and hope all of you can attend through your computer. My thanks to our colleagues in Bozeman for setting all of this up!

The national ACP has been quite active in addressing the issues we have been facing and within this newsletter you will see links to position statements that the ACP has taken. I am very proud to be a member of this organization that strives to make the world a better place.

In closing I want to express my appreciation to Pam Hiebert for the great support, she has given me over the past year in my preparation to be your governor and for her ongoing help. Carrie Reisig is awesome and we are so fortunate to have her as our executive director. Finally, I thank all of you as you represent our profession during these trying times. You all are doing us proud!

Steve Gerstner



Thank you to the following chapter members for serving on the Montana Chapter Governor's Advisory Council!

Council Members –

James Loeffelholz, MD, FACP, Bozeman

Bradford Bergman, MD, FACP, Great Falls

Katie Blair, DO, FACP, Great Falls

Alyssa Burkhart, MD, FACP, Billings

David Bybee, MD, MACP, Bozeman

Christopher Dietrich, MD, Billings

Katherine Dietrich, DO, FACP, Billings

Charlotte Nelson, MD, FACP, Missoula

Bishow Paudel, MD, Miles City

Michael Spinelli, MD, FACP, Bozeman

Noelle Thomas, MD, Billings

Mark Winton, MD, FACP, Bozeman

Robert G. Byron, MD, MPH, FACP, Hardin

Pamela Hiebert, MD, FACP, Bozeman

Jim A. Yturri, MD, FACP, Great Falls

Kelsie Delaney, Med Student, Bozeman

Ellie Schiedermayer, Resident, Billings



Awards/Nominations Committee

Katie Blair, DO, FACP, Charlotte Nelson, MD, FACP, Pam Hiebert, MD, FACP, Kat Dietrich, DO, FACP, Bishow Paudel, MD


Do you have a mentor, colleague, or peer deserving recognition?

The Montana Chapter Awards Committee would appreciate your assistance in recognizing our chapter members that have made outstanding contributions in the practice of medicine, teaching, research, public service, leadership, and medical volunteerism.

Please review the list of chapter awards and submit your nomination to

The Laureate Award, Humanitarian of the Year, Teacher of the Year, Distinguished Teacher/Mentor Award, Lifetime Achievement, Resident Recognition Award for Leadership, Chapter Advocacy Award, Volunteerism Award, Distinguished Internist of the Year, Woman Physician of the Year



2020 Montana Chapter Scientific Meeting


The Montana Chapter has decided to transition the fall 2020 ACP Scientific Meeting from an in person to a virtual meeting. We are in the process of finalizing the details and hope to share more information soon.

The poster competition will also be held virtually, so for all residents and students that want to participate, we are working through the details of this and will share the information with you soon.



Billings Clinic Internal Medicine Residency Program News

We would like to congratulate the Billings Clinic Internal Medicine Residency Program 2020 Graduates!

Please see full graduate list here.



Montana Chapter ACP Climate Action Resolution

In 2016, the American College of Physicians published a position paper on climate change and health that remains one of the strongest statements by any healthcare organization to date. In support of the main tenets of that position paper and subsequent evidence further supporting the health impacts of climate change the Governor's Council of the ACP-Montana Chapter approved a resolution on climate change during its recent meeting. The resolution is located in its entirety here: Montana ACP Climate Resolution.

The resolution encourages sustainable practices within the healthcare sector, education of professionals and the public regarding the potential impacts, and supports advocacy in discussing those impacts and solutions with elected officials.

The resolution is different from most approved in the past in that it will not be sent to the Board of Governors for further action, since ACP national has been and continues to be a leader in climate change action. The resolution does amplify the voice of health care professionals locally and within the state.



Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) – Information for Internists




ACP Condemns Racism, Discrimination and Violence by Public Authorities and Others

ACP stands in solidarity with all who are affected and speaking out against racism, discrimination and violence by public authorities and others. The College recognizes that African-Americans in particular are at risk of being subjected to discrimination and violence against them because of their race, endangering them and even costing them their lives. This should never be acceptable and those responsible must be held accountable.

Read full statement:



Call for Spring 2021 Board of Governors Resolutions

Are you concerned about a practice or clinical issue or have an idea you'd like to suggest? If so, you might consider submitting a resolution to your Governor or chapter council.

Initiating a resolution provides ACP members an opportunity to focus attention at the ACP national level on a particular issue or topic that concerns them. Participating in the Board of Governors resolutions process provides the ACP grassroots member a voice and allows you to shape College policy that impacts the practice of internal medicine. When drafting a resolution, don't forget to consider how well it fits within ACP's Mission and Goals. In addition, be sure to use ACP's Strategy which includes Priority Themes to guide you when proposing a resolution topic.

Not sure how to begin drafting a resolution? Researching the College's position on an issue can give you a start. Visit the ACP Online homepage and click the “Advocacy” link in the right-hand, top margin to access ACP policy positions, read about recent ACP advocacy activities, or search ACP's library of policies and recommendations. Visit your chapter website, too, and click the link under “Advocacy” to access Electronic Resolutions System (ERS) where you can search past or proposed resolutions. A copy of the resolutions process is available on the ERS which furnishes more details on formatting resolutions, as well the process for submission, review, and approval.

Members must submit resolutions to their Governor and/or chapter council. A resolution becomes a resolution of the chapter once the chapter council approves it. If effecting change interests you, the deadline for submitting new resolutions to be heard at the spring 2021 Board of Governors Meeting is October 9, 2020.

Share your good idea with us. Draft a resolution.