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March 2012 S. Clark Fincher, MD, FACP, ACP Governor

From the Governor

Dr. S. Clark Fincher

Greetings friends and colleagues!

I must first apologize for the tardiness of this, my first Governor’s Newsletter. My plan is to write these letters twice annually, one just after the Arkansas Chapter Meeting and one just after Internal Medicine, our national annual meeting.

These are interesting and challenging times to be an Internal Medicine Specialist. From the ACA to EMR to PCMH and ACO’s, we are inundated with new acronyms that vex and challenge us. Happily, we have an organization, the ACP, which dedicates itself to assisting us with the navigation of these difficult waters and helping us continue to be successful in our practices, helping us achieve personal satisfaction with our careers and with providing high quality and compassionate care for those we serve.

Our chapter, I’m happy to report, is doing very well. We currently have 607 members, including 7 Masters, 157 Fellows, 254 Members, and 106 Associates. We also have 81 Medical Students. Our numbers have been steady for a while now, with most growth occurring in our Medical Student and Associate numbers. We need to increase our dues-paying member numbers in order to improve as a chapter and in order to do so, I feel we must not only make it a priority of our chapter, but we must show to both non-members and members alike the high value of ACP membership. This is something I’ve become much more aware of since assuming the role of Governor and I wish to do a better job of communicating it to all who can benefit from joining us. As a corollary, one of my primary goals during my term will be to advocate to ACP the importance of providing value to our membership. We must earn members, not expect membership as an obligation.

Chapter finances are in good shape, as Dr. Hopkins was a very good steward of our funds. We have a good reserve in place which meets ACP standards, but our annual income and expenses are roughly equivalent so that we have little room for increasing recurring expenses unless we improve income by increasing membership or increasing revenue by other means. What we can do now is devote some funds for one-time ad hoc projects and I am open to ideas as to how to do this in ways that benefit our chapter and members the most.

Our Governor’s Advisory Council has reformed with current membership consisting of :

Clark Fincher, Governor
David Covey, Program Chairman
John Holston, Treasurer
Ryan Bariola, UAMS Faculty, (works with our associate members)
Bob Hopkins, Past Governor-Poster Competition-IM Jeopardy!
Keyur Veyas, UAMS Faculty- Resident Case Presentations
Todd Stewart, Ft. Smith- Member at large- Our “IT” expert
Dan Martin, Camden- Member at large
Ray Hall, Former Governor- Jonesboro
Steve Woodruff, Jonesboro-Member at large
Sara Tariq, UAMS faculty- Medical student liaison
Steve Johnson, Fayetteville- member at large
Bill Golden, UAMS faculty and former Chairman of the ACP Board of Regents
Tommy Atkinson, Medical Student- Leader of medical student organization
Stacy Zimmerman, Clinton- Member at large- PCMH Advisory Board Member
Curt Hedberg, Fayetteville- Member at large
Kevin Flinn, Chief Resident- Associate Leader
Omar Atiq, Pine Bluff- Member at large- Advocacy Representative

Our new chapter treasurer is my partner and friend, Dr. John Holston. John is doing an outstanding job of organizing our finances and has been a great help to me. Thanks, John!


Report of the Arkansas Chapter Meeting

The annual Arkansas Chapter Scientific Meeting was held October 21-22 at the Embassy Suites in Little Rock. Take a look at our chapter website to view some photos taken at the meeting:

The meeting was a success in many ways and I will outline a few of them.

Our program chairman for the Chapter Meeting was Dr. David Covey. Assisted by Dr. Vyas and Dr. Hopkins, Dr. Covey put together an outstanding scientific program of both cutting edge and practical information that we will all use in our practices this year. In a new twist, Dr. Covey put all the lectures on flash drives and each participant received one to take home with them. This was a very popular addition to our meeting. My thanks to Dr. Covey and his team for an outstanding and successful program!

Prior to the meeting, the Council met and discussed the state of our chapter and some goals for the future. In brief, we hope to increase both membership and participation in our chapter activities by making our programs and meetings even more valuable to our members and making our members more aware of the many benefits of ACP membership. As noted above, funding will be available to target activities than enhance these goals as well as add value to membership in general and communicate these values to Arkansas Internists.

Our chapter received the “Chapter Excellence Award” this past year and we will continue to work to maintain this achievement on an annual basis.

We have established a new award beginning this year; the Arkansas Chapter Volunteerism Award. This award will be given annually to a deserving chapter member who voluntarily gives of his or her time and talent in an exemplary fashion. Nominations will be solicited this summer and the winner announced at the Chapter Meeting in the Fall.

There were many highlights of the meeting. One of my favorites was the attendance of both Drs. George Ackerman and Robert Abernathy, mentors and friends to many of us. It was so good to see them both. In addition to Dr. Abernathy and Ackerman, three other Masters of the College were in attendance: Drs. Peter Kohler, Taylor Prewitt and Bill Golden. It was great to have five of our seven Masters in attendance as well.

As usual, the main event of the meeting came with the presentation of the Robert Shields Abernathy Laureate Award. This year the award went to Dr. Robert Hopkins, MD, FACP. Dr. Hopkins is our immediate past Governor and has served the College in many capacities before and since his Governorship. Our warmest congratulations go to Bob. I have a new appreciation for the sacrifices he has made for our organization since assuming his role and we appreciate his continued involvement and service.

Another highlight of the meeting was the Associate Presentations. Five resident physicians presented case discussions and, as usual, they were excellent. It was a difficult task, but a “winner” was chosen by our judges and Dr. Katrina Coulter was awarded a $1,000 prize. The other participants received $250 each. We owe our gratitude to Drs. Stacy Zimmerman and Todd Stewart for sponsoring these awards. Thanks Stacy and Todd!

At this point, the consensus of those attending is to have the meeting in Little Rock again next year. The central location seems to be convenient for more of our membership. It is not too early to begin thinking of dates and content for the meeting. ACP requires us to assess the needs of our members and to select the programs to meet those needs. Therefore feedback and suggestions for content of lectures or other activities for the meeting are needed. Feel free to contact me via email, sccfff@gmail.com or cell phone, 501-827-2150 at any time.


UAMS Annual Poster Competition, October 2011

Dr. Hopkins reports to us that the results of the annual UAMS poster competition, which our chapter supports with $2,000 in prize awards are as follows:

Clinical Case Winners

Student: Christopher Merrick
Resident: Supreet Sethi
Fellow: Fawad Aslam

Research Poster Winners

Student: Ann Marie Kieber Emmons
Resident: Meghana Bansal
Fellow: Nikhil Meena

The number of posters entered this year was the most in the history of the competition. Congratulations to the winners.


Upcoming Events

The Annual George Ackerman Reading Retreat will be held again this year at the Red Apple Inn in Heber Springs. The dates are May 5-6, 2012, which is a bit later than usual due to the Internal Medicine meeting in New Orleans this April. Thanks again to Dr. Taylor Pruitt and Dr. Todd Stewart for organizing and producing this meeting. If you’ve never participated, it is a lot of fun and a very relaxing way to spend a couple of days in a beautiful setting.

A reminder that Internal Medicine is coming up soon. We will meet in New Orleans April 19-21 for a three day session packed with useful information and opportunities to interact with colleagues across the nation. There will be a joint reception this year with the Oklahoma and Missouri chapters. I encourage everyone who can to attend. The meeting last year in San Diego was superb. New Fellows and Masters are eligible to participate and march in Convocation, which I would encourage you to do. Academic regalia is worn for this occasion and can be arranged at the following link: http://www.acponline.org/membership/fellowship/convocation/

Congratulations to our new Fellows this year:

Abhishek Agarwal, MBBS, FACP
Ronald J. Blachly, MD, FACP
Shagufta P. Siddiqui, MD, FACP
Karl D. Straub, MD, FACP
Saad Z. Usmani, MBBS, FACP

And special congratulations to our new Master, Dr. Robert Bradsher, who received this high honor this year. My thanks to all those who sent in documentation of Dr. Bradsher’s many achievements and therefore made it possible for him to receive this well-deserved honor.


Leadership Day 2012

New date, June 6-7
Liaison Hotel
415 New Jersey Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20001

The 20th annual Leadership Day on Capitol Hill will be held on June 6-7, 2012 at the Liaison Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Leadership Day enables the College to increase its presence on Capitol Hill and bring our issues of concern to U.S. lawmakers.

This two-day event provides ACP members with advocacy and/or media training, an update on the College's priority legislative issues; briefings from Members of Congress, Administration officials, and key Capitol Hill staffers; and an opportunity to meet with your state's elected officials. A special briefing for associates and medical students is also provided.

All Leadership Day information, including hotel and registration information, will be available on the Leadership Day webpage.

For more information, please contact Shuan Tomlinson, or call her at 800-338-2746 ext. 4547.


Submit Clinical Skills Proposals for Internal Medicine 2013

The Clinical Skills Subcommittee (CSC) is now accepting proposals for Internal Medicine 2013, April 11-13, 2013. The CSC welcomes all proposals but places a priority on interactive workshops that focus on the acquisition or improvement of physical examination skills, communication skills, and procedural skills. The CSC is most interested in workshops that have a high likelihood of changing physician behavior using proven teaching techniques or new and innovative teaching strategies that have yet to be tested.

To submit a proposal to the committee, please complete the Proposal for Internal Medicine 2013 application. The deadline for proposals is May 21, 2012.


Contact Information

Omar Atiq, MD, FACP, Governor, Arkansas Chapter

Donna Seawards, Arkansas Executive Director