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(Co-Sponsors: Oregon and Downstate Illinois, Northern Illinois, New York, and BOG Class of 2017)
WHEREAS, physicians who are impaired for any reason must refrain from assuming patient responsibilities that they may not be able to discharge safely and effectively1; and
WHEREAS, some healthcare systems, policy-makers, and medical organizations, such as the American Medical Association (AMA), Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB), and Federation of State Physicians Health Programs (FSPHP), are considering some form of age-based competency screening for physicians of all specialties2 3 4 5; and
WHEREAS, age is only one possible factor in predicting potential competence; other factors such as practice setting, clinical volume, specialty, health, habits of life-long learning, and stress also can contribute; and
WHEREAS, internists older than 65 years of age continue to provide care to their patients in a variety of settings and ways; and
WHEREAS, age-based screening could adversely affect the physician work-force, particularly in primary care; therefore be it
RESOLVED, that the Board of Regents works with other organizations, such as the AMA, FSMB, and FSPHP, to assess systems for assuring that internists continue to provide safe and effective patient care, and to assess the risks and benefits of targeting any specific population, including senior physicians, for additional assessments.
1ACP Ethics Manual, 6th edition. https://www.acponline.org/running_practice/ethics/manual/manual6th.htm#impaired. Accessed October 16, 2015.
2American Medical Association Reference Committee C. Assuring safe and effective care for patients by senior/late career physicians. CME Report 05-A-15. June 2015. http://www.ama-assn.org/sub/meeting/reportsresolutions.html. Accessed November 3, 2015.
3 Medscape Business of Medicine. "Should Doctors Be Tested for Competence at Age 65?," http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/848937. Accessed November 2, 2015.
4 Federation of State Medical Boards. http://www.fsmb.org. Accessed November 27, 2015.
5Federation of State Physicians Health Programs. http://www.fsphp.org. Accessed November 27, 2015.