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Meeting Expectations


Spring is in the air: Flowers are blooming, trees are budding, and the SHM Annual Meeting is fast approaching.

Held Wednesday, May 3, through Friday, May 5, 2006, in Washington, D.C., the 9th Annual Meeting will include comprehensive education designed for hospitalists, networking with physicians from around the country, and chatting with your representatives in Congress. (See “Legislative Advocacy Day Debuts,” p. 10.)

“The SHM Annual Meeting is the largest gathering of all the stakeholders in hospital medicine, presenting a unique networking opportunity,” says Larry Wellikson, MD, FACP, CEO of SHM. “In 2006 we’re using the meeting’s location in our nation’s capitol to help hospitalists to be advocates for their patients and their specialty by meeting with their elected Members of Congress.”

The focus of the meeting, as always, will be the education offered. “Whatever your specialty, this meeting allows you to get something out of it,” says Alpesh Amin, MD, course director for the Annual Meeting. “There will be something for beginning hospitalists as well as more mature hospitalists. We’ll cover a lot of core topics.”

Four Pre-courses Offer In-Depth Education

Every SHM Annual Meeting includes all-day pre-courses that provide comprehensive education on important topics. “It’s very important to allow hospitalists the opportunity to delve into a subject in-depth,” says Dr. Amin.

Here is an overview of the pre-courses offered at the 9th Annual Meeting, taking place Wednesday, May 3:

  • Best Practices in Managing a Hospital Medicine Program: Faculty provide practical tools including templates, checklists, references and benchmarks, designed to help individuals starting a new hospital medicine program or improve the management operation of an existing program.
  • Critical Care Medicine for the Hospitalist: Through a series of interactive lectures and panel discussions, experts provide state-of-the-art, evidence-based strategies for managing critically ill hospitalized patients.
  • High Impact Quality Improvement: How to Ensure a Successful Project: Offered for the first time, this pre-course is comprised of small, group-facilitated sessions that allow participants to apply quality improvement strategies to the development of site-specific interventions in one of three topics: VTE prevention, glycemic control or improving outcomes in chronic heart failure.
  • Perioperative and Consultative Medicine for the Hospitalist: Experts provide current concepts and evidence-based information regarding key issues in perioperative and consultative medicine for the hospitalist.

Each pre-course carries seven or eight CME credits; details are available online, along with registration for all pre-courses, at—JJ

Education Covers Core Competencies

The basis for all education offered during the meeting is SHM’s new core competencies, developed by the Education Committee and released in January 2006. (The Core Competencies in Hospital Medicine: A Framework for Curriculum Development debuted in a supplement to the first issue of the Journal of Hospital Medicine.) The goal is to have these core competencies serve as the backbone for how hospitalists are recruited, trained, and certified in hospital medicine, as well as to standardize expectations for learning and proficiency.

“Our goal was to include [the core competencies] as a base for developing sessions, workshops, and lectures” at the Annual Meeting, says Dr. Amin. “We’re asking speakers to incorporate relevant core competencies into their lectures.”

To learn more about the new framework, Annual Meeting attendees can come to a session about the core competencies offered on Thursday, May 4 from 10:10 to 10:35 a.m.

Choose from Multiple Learning Tracks

Attendees at the Annual Meeting can customize their educational experience by choosing sessions from one or more of six general tracks:

Adult clinical: This track emphasizes recent advances that should be incorporated into the hospitalist’s approach to clinical care delivery. Sessions will cover diabetes management, acute coronary syndromes, chronic heart failure, addiction medicine, resuscitation, and much more.

Pediatric clinical: This track covers pediatric hospitalist practice management as well as current clinical issues. Sessions will cover controversies surrounding management of respiratory illnesses and the febrile infant, as well as practice management topics such as contract and salary negotiation and billing and coding.

Academic: This track covers the unique challenges faced by hospitalists in academic medical centers, including dealing with the 80-hour workweek and developing a curriculum for quality improvement and patient safety. The track also covers how to structure a research project and how to write for scientific publications.

Quality: This track addresses the imperative around development and implementation of improvement efforts in the hospital. Practical sessions cover improving physician/nurse communication, rapid response teams, and improving VTE prophylaxis.

Operational: This track covers some of the latest information and ideas for organizational infrastructure in topics such as value-added services, hospitalist burnout, performance management and advances in staffing projections.

New track! Developmental: This new track focuses on career satisfaction, building palliative care services, creating a hospitalist procedure service, and developing and implementing a perioperative care and consultative medicine program.

Regardless of which track or tracks you choose, you’ll have ample opportunity to improve your clinical skills, address operational issues with possible solutions for your hospital medicine group, and be prepared to lead change and innovation at your hospital.

Attendees should also note: You can earn a maximum of 13.25 category 1 credits toward the AMA Physician’s Recognition Award—plus additional credits for pre-courses. (See “Four Pre-Courses Offer In-Depth Education,” above.)

Legislative Advocacy Day Debuts

For the first time, SHM is offering members the opportunity to meet with their members of Congress and Congressional staff to discuss current and impending legislative initiatives that affect hospitalists and our patients.

Attendees of the Annual Meeting who sign up to participate in Legislative Advocacy Day will receive a schedule of Congressional meetings on Wednesday, May 3. Each participant will have a minimum of three meetings, including one with each of their two Senate offices and one with the office of their House member.

Participants will have a chance to communicate with their elected officials and influence health policy as they serve as advocates for their profession and their patients.

For more information on Legislative Advocacy Day, visit —JJ

Nationwide Networking

In addition to dozens of educational sessions, the Annual Meeting includes many opportunities to network with colleagues from across the country, including leading experts and trendsetters. Networking events provide natural settings to search for a job or potential candidate, make connections, and get answers to clinical and organizational dilemmas. You can also network with more than 100 exhibitors in the Exhibit Hall to find new information and solutions.

“The networking aspect is beneficial,” says Dr. Amin. “The Mentorship Breakfast on the second day is particularly valuable.” The Mentorship Breakfast matches new or aspiring hospitalists—or those experiencing new challenges in their practice—with experienced hospitalist mentors for small-group discussions. Pre-registration is required for the breakfast. (For more information, visit

Another excellent event for networking is Thursday afternoon’s Special Interest Forums. Meet hospitalists with similar interests:

  • Community-based hospitalists;
  • Medical directors/leadership;
  • Pediatric hospitalists;
  • Family practice hospitalists;
  • Geriatric hospitalists;
  • Women in hospital medicine;
  • Early career hospitalists;
  • Nurse practitioners and physician assistants;
  • Education;
  • Research; and
  • History of medicine.

In addition to the Special Interest Forums, you’ll have the opportunity to meet other hospitalists at a “town hall meeting.” Scheduled for Friday, the town hall meeting will feature a facilitated discussion of pressing topics in hospital medicine, as chosen by those in attendance.

Whether you attend the meeting or not, rest assured that everyone who comes to Washington, D.C., in May will help to advance the profession through learning the new core competencies, through sharing ideas and solutions, and through continuing to make an impact as hospitalists.

For more information on the Annual Meeting and to register online, visit TH

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