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Governor's Newsletter February 2016

Nebraska Chapter Banner

In this Issue:

From the Governor

Dr. Shiffermiller

William A. Shiffermiller, MD, FACP, ACP Governor

Colleagues: Another year has passed and it’s time to thank you all again for supporting the ACP and especially our local chapter.

It looks as if MOC is migrating towards a more useful and appropriate process with the potential for replacing the high stakes 10-year exam with more frequent lower stakes assessments and more focused assessments in the area of a physician practice scope. All of this to a great extent is due to ACP input.

Don’t forget that Dynamed Plus is now available free from the ACP website for downloading on your devices and is a viable alternative to Up-To-Date.

The Fall meeting resolution process included an update to policy on medical student debt and lobbying CMS to refrain from penalties for not using certified EMR. We reaffirmed the value of physician-to-physician consults during the evaluation of complex medical patients. Referred for study were resolutions to evaluate feasibility of importing medicines from outside the United States, and for enhancing and better defining telehealth.

After the Spring ACP meeting, Marvin Bittner will be taking over my role and he has a vignette in this issue encouraging participation in the ACP, I support whole-heartedly.

Thank you for the privilege of serving these last several years in an organization we can all be proud of.


From the Governor-Elect


Dr. Bittner

Marvin Bittner, MD FACP, Governor-Elect, Nebraska ACP


For some time, I've known one of our members, whom I'll call "Dr. X". Dr. X is consistent. Dr. X’s manner of speaking is consistent. What Dr. X says when Dr. X speaks is consistent. Dr. X has a consistent approach to medical issues. Dr. X has demonstrated a consistent pattern of involvement in medical organizations.

All of that is the basis for a paradox.

On the one hand, Dr. X is, well, consistent. Yet, not long ago, my opinion of Dr. X underwent a marked change.

That change occurred when I read an article.

The article that changed my opinion of Dr. X explored the concept of being a good citizen. However, the article did not deal with being a good citizen in the general community. Instead, it explored the concept of being a good citizen in the medical community. In the general community, a good citizen stays informed about public policy—and votes on election day. In the medical community, it is important to be informed about public policy issues affecting medicine and to work with medical organizations to encourage the development of policies that will promote health. In the general community, a good citizen serves on a jury; that helps people get fair trials. In the medical community, involvement in medical organizations contributes in many ways to the medical profession.

Dr. X has consistently been very involved in medical organizations, including the American College of Physicians. Before I read the article, I thought Dr. X’s extensive involvement was interesting; but it seemed like just a minor aspect of Dr. X’s professional career. After I read the article, I changed the way I saw Dr. X. I saw Dr. X as a model citizen of the medical community. Dr. X, consistently, has been making many contributions to the profession.

You may wonder just who is Dr. X. You’ll have a hard time deciding.

There is a very long list of members who have contributed immensely to the success of our chapter, year after year. There are many physicians who could be Dr. X.

I hope every member who reads this will aspire to be like Dr. X. Are you especially interested in health policy issues? Are you someone who could help plan a meeting? Or recruit new members? Could you give a presentation at our annual meeting? Do you have a little time to review a paper if a request comes from the Annals editorial staff? Whatever your talents, you can be like Dr. X. You can do your part to be a good citizen of the medical community and strengthen our profession.


Early Career Physician Council

Dear Early Career Physician Colleagues,

Did you know that the Council of Early Career Physicians (CECP) recently underwent a leadership change? Micah Beachy, the long-time Chair of the Council was selected to serve as the Chair of the National Council of Early Career Physicians. This is a wonderful opportunity for Micah, and it is a great way for our chapter to have a voice on the national level. After 2 active years on the NE chapter CECP, I have accepted the position as Council Chair and look forward to continued success. Micah will remain on the NE CECP for a transitional period.

As you recall the CECP strives to involve and educate physicians as they begin their practice and beyond. To this end, we are hosting a speaker, who will discuss “Marketing in Medicine.” I think this will be very informative, especially as social media and online reviews become more prevalent. Mary Palu, a marketing and PR executive at Baily Lauerman, has experience in the health care arena. The event will be at Brix at Midtown on April 12, 2016 at 6:30 pm, and promises to be an engaging evening with good company. In our efforts to engage members beyond the Omaha and Lincoln areas, we are again planning to record this presentation for future viewing on the chapter website. I hope to see many of you there to catch up and enjoy dinner. NOTE: Space is limited, so please RSVP to Kris Rahm by April 1st.

In addition to our spring meeting, the CECP is sponsoring 3 speakers and a welcome reception at the chapter meeting this fall. The presentations will be relevant to physicians in all career stages, though will focus on topics of interest to those of us newly out of training. Early career physicians can also participate by submitting an abstract (watch for the Call for Abstracts in August), with the winner presenting at the fall meeting. This is a great opportunity to sharpen your skills with presentation at a regional conference. Look for more information to come.

What else can the CECP do for you? I would love to hear your feedback. From hospitalists, to traditional practitioners and academics, to private practice, the council is interested in hearing your thoughts.

Lauren Nelson, MD


Nebraska Scientific Meeting – October 26-28, 2016 – Omaha, NE

Our planning committee has been working diligently to provide a quality CME annual meeting this year. And, new in 2016, our entire meeting can now be used as MOC points for recertification. A detailed brochure will be on our chapter website after April 1st, but here are some highlights:

  • Bedside ultrasound overview and hands-on workshop
  • Sue Hingle, Chair-Elect of the Board of Regents will present “Physician Communication Skills” in addition to an ACP College Update.
  • Bob Doherty, SVP of Governmental Affairs and Public Policy will provide a Washington Update.
  • Two (2) ABIM SEP modules for recertification points – Hospice and Palliative Care AND Hospital Based Internal Medicine.
  • Others topics include: Diabetes Update, Hep B & C, Apps in Medicine, Documentation in the EHR Era, and Cost Conscious Care.

Please mark your calendars today! Space is limited, so please plan to register early.


Leadership Day - May 3-4, 2016 – Washington, DC

This year we look forward to the annual Leadership Day in Washington DC - May 3-4, 2016., which bookends the 2016 Annual ACP meeting May 5-7, 2016. This has been a great event and everyone is encouraged to consider attending. If interested, please email Kris Rahm so she can add you to the congressional appointment list.


Nebraska Achieves Chapter Excellence Award

I am pleased to announce that our chapter has received the 2015 Chapter Excellence Award! In order to achieve the Chapter Excellence Award, chapters must meet all basic criteria and seven optional criteria. Criteria include activities such as formulating an effective Governor’s Council and committees, communicating frequently with membership, providing educational opportunities, recruiting and advancing members and celebrating membership through local awards. I would like to extend a special thanks to those chapter members who assisted in all of these endeavors! We received this award through your hard work and dedication.

William A. Shiffermiller, MD FACP


Congratulations to our 2015 Annual Award Recipients

Chapter Centennial Legacy Award – Rowen K. Zetterman, MD MACP
Laureate – Devin J. Fox, MD FACP
LeeRoy Meyer Award – Rachel A. Bonnema, MD FACP
Walter J. O’Donohue, Jr. Award – Tammy O. Wichman, MD
Community Service – Phillip W. Smith, MD FACP and Angela L. Hewlett, MD FACP
Volunteer Faculty Award – John “Mike” Adams, MD FACP
Early Career Physician of the Year – Carolyn Manhart, MD FACP
Resident Poster Competition Winner – Lyndsey Heise, MD
Student Poster Competition Winner – Krista Shaw


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Other ACP Resources

Free Access to DynaMed Plus™ for ACP Members

New Online Opioid Education Modules, Video Now Available


Nebraska ACP 2016 Calendar of Events

NE Governors Advisory Council Meeting

April 5 – 6:30 pm
Location TBD, Omaha, NE

Board of Governors

May 1-2
Washington, DC

Leadership Day

May 3-4
Washington, DC

IM 2016

May 5-7
Washington, DC

SD, IA, NE & KS Combined Chapter Reception

(Attached Brochure PDF)

May 6
Washington, DC

NE Annual Scientific Meeting

October 26-28
Sheraton (108th & Dodge), Omaha, NE