Archives / 2011 / July
  • Annual Session 2011 daily news wrap – Saturday

    Tags: hcsm, social media, awards, annual session and scientific assembly

    Maybe I’m biased, but Saturday is my favorite day of Annual Session! The morning started on the business side with the meeting of the TAFP Board of Directors and on the education side with the CME breakfast kicking off another full day of lectures.

    The Business and Awards Lunch is where the Academy hands out top honors to outstanding family physicians and family medicine supporters. Dr. Tom Mueller of Columbus received the 2011 Family Physician of the Year Award. Glowing words from patients aside, his reflections on the important role of family physicians in caring for the community were amplified by his family’s commitment to the profession – at least five Muellers are also decorated family physicians.

    During the second part of the lunch, we inducted our 2011-2012 officers. Incoming President Dr. Balkcom talked about the need to stand up for family medicine and its central role in health care.

  • Annual Session 2011 daily news wrap – Friday

    Tags: hcsm, social media, tafp foundation, poster competition, cme, annual session and scientific assembly, exhibit

    Friday kicked off with the grand opening of the Exhibit Hall. More than 60 exhibitors from all facets of the health care industry staffed booths, ready to reach out to the family physicians of Texas. From Texas Medical Liability Trust to e-MDs to PedsPal, each vendor had a unique appeal to medical practice.

    The big opening event coincided with the breakfast, featuring the TAFP Foundation board members greeted attendees and spoke about the group’s important philanthropic work. The Foundation is also offering 15-minute chair massages in the Hall; attendees have one more day to take advantage this perk, with proceeds benefiting the Foundation.

    Also in the hall were the research poster displays, which brought medical students, family medicine residents, and family physicians from across the state to show off their latest findings. The grand winner was resident Richel Avery, M.D., of UTHSCSA, “Residents’ Knowledge, Attitudes and Behaviors in Colon Cancer Prevention: Findings from a Residency Training Project.”

  • Annual Session 2011 daily news wrap – Thursday

    Tags: hcsm, social media, national procedures institute, cme, annual session and scientific assembly

    All hands were on deck for this busy Thursday. A note on how it all fits together, “Annual Session” refers to the business portion while the “Scientific Assembly” refers to the continuing medical education portion.

    Both were in full swing today with Day 2 of the NPI workshop, the start of general session CME, and TAFP members meeting throughout the day in a dozen different policy-making groups.

    One CME seminar to highlight is “Financial Realities for the Physician Manager,” with top Academy business minds Dr. Robert Youens of Weimar, Dr. Doug Curran of Athens, and Dr. Stephen Benold of Georgetown. Both Dr. Youens and Dr. Curran run very successful family medicine practices in rural areas, and Dr. Benold spends part of his time as a financial advisor. The idea for this seminar actually began with our August 2010 Strategic Planning meeting: TAFP members wanted more training as an increasing number of physicians are taking a larger role in the business side of medicine. Whether running a solo practice or joining a large hospital group, this seminar taught attendees the basics of business—addressing the difference between benchmarking and profit, the bottleneck concept, and the importance of efficiency.

  • Annual Session 2011 daily news wrap – Wednesday

    Tags: hcsm, social media, annual session and scientific assembly, self assessment module

    Day 1 is done! The last of the TAFP staff arrived at the host hotel, the Sheraton Dallas, joining in the effort to prepare for the week’s activities. The hotel is huge with three different towers of rooms and meeting space. Attendees will mostly use the center tower and the second floor for our meetings, special events, and education. (Please feel free to come by the TAFP registration desk to ask a question or just to say hi. We’re on the second floor by the skybridge.)

    Today was the first of two days of the NPI workshop. We also held the SAM Workshop on Health Behavior that helps attendees meet one requirement of the American Board of Family Medicine Maintenance of Certification. The sold-out SAM was a great success; everyone passed the Knowledge Assessment portion of the SAM and now only has to complete an additional test to receive full credit. Dr. Clare Hawkins, the SAM moderator, did a great job as usual.

    Tomorrow (Thursday) will be one of the busiest days of Annual Session with the second day of the NPI workshop, lots of Annual Session business meetings, and the start of the general session CME with afternoon concurrent seminars. Thanks for joining us on our virtual site, and don’t forget to check in and comment! Goodnight!

  • Connect with colleagues through Annual Session Social Media

    Tags: fmrevolution, hcsm, social media, annual session and scientific assembly, family physician

    TAFP is embarking on a new experience for the 2011 Annual Session and Scientific Assembly, July 27-31, in Dallas. We have developed the Annual Session Social Media Portal, a new blog page on that presents an opportunity for all TAFP members to participate, provide input, and interact with our fully-integrated social media program during the entire gathering.

    This page,, will be your hub for a live-streamed lecture; TAFP’s social media feeds; and discussion topics before, during, and after Annual Session. We encourage all to participate, especially if you can’t physically attend Annual Session in Dallas.

    On this page we’ll post the latest news, gather attendee feedback, and stream a lecture from the 2011 Annual Session, TMLT’s “Know Before You Sign! What to Look for in a Physician Employment Contract, Including Employment by Non-Profit Health Corporations” with Douglas Kennedy, J.D.

  • Med school grads bring life to workforce

    Tags: workforce, medical school, advocacy, student

    Physician workforce – particularly in family medicine and primary care – has dominated TAFP’s focus during the past six months of the 82nd Texas Legislature and special session. Workforce issues emerge in all policy areas: health and human services, education, and their respective budgets – through medical school funding, graduate medical education, the Texas Statewide Preceptorship Program, and Texas Physician Education Loan Repayment program.

    On June 11th, 2011, after the regular session ended and in the middle of the special session, I was very fortunate to be in the audience at the Stanford Medical School Commencement to see my sister receive her M.D./Ph.D., and to hear one of her classmates, David Austin Craig, M.D., give a thoughtful and humorous speech reflecting on his experience in med school and looking forward to the future.

    Seeing the class of nearly 100 brand-new doctors “preparing to go from the frying pan of medical school to the Armageddon of residency,” as Craig said, reminded me why TAFP members spent so much time at the Capitol and in district offices meeting with legislators, testifying at hearings, developing and distributing issue briefs and policy papers, and reporting back to friends and colleagues in their communities. It’s all to support and protect the noble profession of medicine.