Latest updates on ACP's priorities, initiatives

ACP Spotlight offers readers a look at ACP's current top priorities and initiatives, as well as highlights from our e-newsletter, ACP Internist Weekly.

Announcing ACP Connect

ACP's new member-exclusive app, ACP Connect, provides on-the-go access to the latest College news, information, tools, and resources. Features include the ability to engage with colleagues in topic-specific groups, search event listings and add events to a personal calendar, and customize a personal news feed. Access download instructions and watch a brief introductory video.

ACP announces 2023-2024 recipients of Mastership and national awards

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The Board of Regents recently approved the 2023-2024 recipients of Mastership and national awards. If you would like to personally congratulate any of the new awardees or MACPs, please contact John Haefele, Administrator, Board of Regents and Governance Activities.

ACP addresses ethics of physician fundraising from ‘grateful patients'

Physicians should not engage in, or be asked or expected to participate in, fundraising through solicitation of their patients or patients' families, ACP stated in a recent position paper.

The College suggests the following:

  • Participation by physicians in health care fundraising should be guided by the best interests of patients and by the need to establish and maintain trust in the patient-physician relationship. Patients or family members inquiring about charitable donations should be directed to the institution's administrators. Other activities that do not involve payments by their patients but constitute fundraising, including speaking at events, attending galas, giving public talks related to the physician's area of expertise or research, and encouraging philanthropy by colleagues, can be ethically acceptable.
  • Physicians have a duty to protect patient privacy and confidentiality and should not reveal or use patient information for fundraising purposes. Maintaining confidentiality and respecting patient privacy are core ethical responsibilities for physicians. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act Privacy Rule was modified in 2013 to expand access to and use of protected health information (PHI) by health care fundraisers. ACP opposes the use and disclosure of PHI for fundraising purposes under the modification.
  • Physicians should not be asked or expected to participate in fundraising solicitation of their patients or patients' families as a condition of employment or as part of an incentive program.

The paper was developed by ACP's Ethics, Professionalism and Human Rights Committee and published Sept. 26 by Annals of Internal Medicine.

ACP reviews performance measures for osteoporosis

A recent position paper from ACP,Quality Indicators for Osteoporosis in Adults,” found that of the six current performance measures related to osteoporosis and relevant to internal medicine physicians, only one is valid at three levels of attribution, i.e., individual physician, group practice, and health plan. The paper, published Oct. 3 in Annals of Internal Medicine, was developed by ACP's Performance Measurement Committee and also proposes a performance measure concept to address a performance gap for the initial approach to therapy for patients with a new diagnosis of osteoporosis, based on ACP's related clinical practice guideline. ACP's assessments in this paper, if adopted, will help improve development of reliable and valid performance measures, which can result in CMS removing burdensome measures that don't add quality for clinical outcomes.

ICYMI: Highlights from ACP Internist Weekly

  • Guidance offered for treating patients exposed to xylazine. Xylazine, an animal sedative that is FDA-approved for veterinary use only, has consistently appeared in illegally manufactured fentanyl since 2016, but its prevalence has been increasing markedly in recent years. Researchers used studies on xylazine research and their own clinical experience to offer guidance for clinicians on caring for patients exposed to the drug, in a review published Oct. 10 by Annals of Internal Medicine and summarized in the Oct. 10 ACP Internist Weekly.
  • Drug screens early during treatment for OUD predict risk of return to opioid use. A recent study found that patients whose urine drug screens in the three weeks after beginning treatment for opioid use disorder (OUD) were negative for opioids had a 13% risk of returning to opioid use compared with 85% for those with three weeks of opioid-positive or missing results. The study was published Oct. 4 by JAMA Psychiatry and summarized in the Oct. 10 ACP Internist Weekly.

ACP Internist Weekly is an e-newsletter published every Tuesday and available online. Subscribe online.