Keep updated on the latest AAIM successes and take action on key policy issues affecting academic internal medicine.
AAIM Provides Feedback on Unintended Consequences of New ACGME FTE Requirements
September 2022—Through the work of a cross-council writing group, the Alliance developed a letter summarizing many of the concerns about the new program requirements for core faculty support of internal medicine residency and fellowship programs. Sent September 8, the letter to ACGME acknowledges the shared goal of providing outstanding training and the mutual commitment to prioritizing resources for education. However, the new requirements have raised several financial challenges and potential repercussions for training, compensation, and research that AAIM hopes to ameliorate through cooperation with ACGME and other key stakeholders.
Update: In a September 21 response, ACGME shared that in response to the input from the Alliance and others, the current core faculty member FTE requirements for internal medicine subspecialties will not be enforced in 2023 and that they will be revised as part of the major revision of subspecialty program requirements currently underway.
Read the letter | Read the ACGME response
The Alliance Signs On to GME Advocacy Coalition Letter
July 2022—The Graduate Medical Education Advocacy Coalition--of which AAIM is a member--sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to urge them to build upon historic investment in the health care workforce as they consider upcoming budget reconciliation legislation. Investments to increase the number of physicians are sorely needed; the coalition specifically asked leaders to include policies that would increase Medicare support for GME in the budget reconciliation legislation.
Read the letter
The Alliance Joins More than 75 Organizations in Statement Against Legislative Interference
July 2022—Initially developed by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Medical Association in response to the June 24 US Supreme Court decision in Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, the statement asserts that “as the US health care system enters a post-Roe era, we, representing dozens of major organizations of health care professionals, oppose all legislative interference in the patient–clinician relationship. Our patients need to be able to access—and our clinicians need to be able to provide—the evidence-based care that is right for them, including abortion, without arbitrary limitations, without threats, and without harm.”
Read the full statement
The Alliance Calls for Policymakers to Support Gun Safety Legislation
May 2022—The Alliance is saddened and horrified by the most recent spate of mass shootings in the United States. More than two years ago, AAIM joined 40 other leading organizations to call for policies to help reduce firearm related injury and death in the United States. Today, the Alliance calls for policymakers to represent the interests of the public—which includes our patients, learners, and faculty and staff—and support legislation to mandate background checks, enact “red flag” laws, ban access to assault weapons, and increase federal support for research on gun violence as a public health issue.
Read the full statement
Alliance Continues Advocacy for Formal DIO Evaluation Process
April 2022— Because the support of a DIO is critical to a successful education mission, the Alliance has again asked ACGME to strongly consider developing and implementing an assessment tool to objectively assess the performance of the DIO. To be beneficial to the program, institution, and ACGME, this tool should be anonymous, administered on a 360-degree basis (including all key stakeholders), and include feedback from all program directors within the institution. The Alliance also asked ACGME to consider a formal DIO evaluation process in March 2021 in consideration of the challenges posed to institutions by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Read the April 2022 letter to ACGME | Read the March 2021 letter to ACGME
Alliance, Other Stakeholders Urge Swift Passage of FY 2022 Federal Spending Bills
November 2021—The Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research sent a letter November 15 to Congressional leadership urging the timely passage of FY 2022 bills to invest robustly in agencies and programs that will improve the nation’s health and well-being. Noting that HR 4502 and Senate draft Labor-HHS-Education spending bills already include strong increases, the letter encourages lawmakers to provide at least $46.4 billion for NIH’s base, supplement the work with separate new investment in the proposed Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health, and avoid additional continuing resolutions past December. AAIM is a member of the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research.
Read the letter
Alliance Comments on ACGME Focused Revisions to Program Requirements
October 2021—At the end of July 2021, ACGME opened a 45-day comment period for the focused revisions to program requirements related to program director and coordinator support. While generally in support of the revisions, the Alliance emphasized the timeline needed to effect significant changes in staffing as well as past positions shared with ACGME about administrator FTE needs and program support.
Review AAIM comments
AAIM Joins GME Advocacy Coalition in Advocating for Additional Medicare-Supported GME Slots
September 2021— The Graduate Medical Education (GME) Advocacy Coalition has called on Congress to include additional GME slots in the budget reconciliation legislation they are drafting. This would build upon the 1,000 GME slots that Congress provided at the end of last year in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.
Coalition Comments on Safety Event Reporting
July 2021—The Coalition to Improve Diagnosis commends AHRQ on the release of the Common Format for Event Reporting–Diagnostic Safety Version 0.1. Despite the complexity and variability associated with diagnosis, the proposal begins to address the need for consistent approaches to diagnostic safety event reporting.
Coalition Encourages CMS to Broaden Distribution Criteria for New Positions
July 2021—The GME Advocacy Coalition—of which AAIM is a member—sent a letter June 28 to CMS about the proposed distribution of the 1,000 newly created Medicare-supported residency positions provided for in the 2021 Consolidated Appropriations Act. The coalition urged CMS to finalize the alternative 2 methodology in the FY 2022 Inpatient Prospective Payment System proposed rule (with modifications) and increase the number of FTE slots awarded per hospital for FY 2023 and all succeeding years, decisions that will allow CMS to distribute the positions in a way that ensures teaching hospitals can make meaningful increases in residency programs to produce more physicians.
Read the letter
UPDATE: Alliance Comments on CoPA UME-GME Transition Recommendations
May 2021—AAIM provided feedback on the preliminary recommendations from the Coalition for Physician Accountability UME–GME Review Committee to improve transition. Understanding that that CoPA does not intend to make “substantive changes to the preliminary recommendations,” the Alliance provided insights to operationalize the recommendations related to faculty development, minimizing bias, and examining resource and financial implications as well as the application process, virtual interviews, structured evaluative letters, and student advising.
Alliance Urges Federal Support for Physician Training
May 2021—The Graduate Medical Education Advocacy Coalition, of which the Alliance is a long-time member, sent a letter May 18 to President Joseph R. Biden and key congressional leaders to encourage support for the Resident Physician Shortage Reduction Act of 2021 (S 834/HR 2256). This bipartisan legislation would take steps to alleviate the physician shortage by gradually providing 14,000 new Medicare-supported GME positions and commission a report to specifically look at ways to create a more diverse clinical workforce.
Read the letter
NASEM Releases Report on Implementing Primary Care
May 2021—The National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine (NASEM) recently released Implementing High-Quality Primary Care: Rebuilding the Foundation of Health Care, putting forward an evidence-based plan with actionable objectives via an implementation plan that balances national needs for scalable solutions while allowing adaptations to meet local needs. The Alliance is a study sponsor and provided public testimony at the study kickoff in January 2020.
Read AAIM testimony (January 2020)
COPA Releases UME-GME Transition Recommendations
April 2021—The Coalition for Physician Accountability recently released its recommendations developed by its Undergraduate Medical Education to Graduate Medical Education Review Committee. Convened in summer 2020, this committee was charged to recommend solutions to identified challenges in the UME-GME transition. The 42 recommendations are grouped into 12 themes, and are open for public comment until May 26.
AAIM has re-engaged the joint committee-council writing group that developed a preliminary Alliance statement (linked to below) in response to a December 2020 request from COPA seeking organizational input on the “ideal state” of UME-GME transition. The Alliance's comments will appear in the May 27 issue of AAIM Connection.
Read the COPA recommendations
Alliance Submits Comments on Proposed ACGME Section II CPR Revisions
April 2021—In response to a public comment period issued by ACGME, AAIM commented on the draft focused revisions to Section II of the Common Program Requirements relating to dedicated time for program directors, assistant/associate program directors, program coordinators, and core faculty members. The AAIM feedback was developed by a subset of the task force that generated the Alliance testimony for ACGME's program support congress in fall 2020: Paul B. Aronowitz, MD, MACP, Steven R. Barczi, MD, Anne B. Curtis, MD, MACP, FACC, FHRS, FAHA, Susan Lane, MD, FACP, Diane L. Levine, MD, FACP, and Bethany Millar, C-TAGME.
Essentially, GME program leaders need time and flexibility to carry out their responsibilities. AAIM recommends reinstating the 20% minimum FTE on non-clinical time dedicated to program administration; restoring the 50% FTE for program coordinators; and asking departments that share a single coordinator across multiple smaller programs to describe their process for augmenting administrative support, specifically during busier times.
Read the comments
AAIM Urges Administration to Support RISE Act
March 2021—The Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine (AAIM) joined Research!America and other organizations to urge the Biden Administration to support the Research Investment to Spark the Economy (RISE) Act.
AAIM Supports Increase in GME Positions
March 2021—The Alliance for Academic Internal Medicine (AAIM) has signed on to an effort by organizations representing America’s medical schools, teaching hospitals, and their physician partners to urge Congress to take steps to increase the supply of physicians in the United States.
Letter to U.S. House | Letter to U.S. Senate
Alliance Advocates for Formal DIO Evaluation Process
March 2021—The challenges of the COVID pandemic have exacerbated many struggles in medical education; the 2020 APDIM Fall Program Directors Survey revealed that up to one-third of internal medicine program directors in community- and university-based settings feel less than "highly supported" by GME leadership; 9.7% and 8.1% of program directors felt not at all supported by their hospital and GME leadership, respectively. Because the support of a DIO is critical to a successful education mission, the Alliance asked ACGME to strongly consider developing and implementing an assessment tool to objectively assess the performance of the DIO.
Read the letter to ACGME
GME Advocacy Coalition Thanks Congress for GME Support
February 2021—More than 80 organizations of the GME Advocacy Coalition, including AAIM, sent a letter to Congressional leaders January 27 to thank them for adding 1,000 new Medicare-supported GME positions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. Federal support for GME has been effectively frozen since 1997; these new slots will alleviate some of the pressure teaching hospitals have been facing and allow them to increase training. The residency positions supported by the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021 are a needed first step to train enough physicians to treat a growing and aging population.
Read the letter
AAIM Comments on Ideal State of UME-GME Transition for COPA
January 2021—In response to a December 8 request from the Coalition for Physician Accountability UME-to-GME Review Committee seeking organizational input on the “ideal state” of UME-GME transition, an Alliance joint committee-council writing group developed a statement that emphasized the necessity for collaboratively developed assessment and transition tools, a commitment to transparency at the program and applicant levels, support for holistic review and for international medical graduates, and the importance of professional identity formation. AAIM thanks the writing group for its efforts: Richard L. Alweis, MD, Stefanie R. Brown, MD, FACP, FAAP, Chayan Chakraborti, MD, FACP, SFHM, Shobhina G. Chheda, MD, MPH, Aashish K. Didwania, MD, Matthew M. Fitz, MD, Susan Lane, MD, FACP, Amy Shaheen, MD, MSc, FACP, and Patricia Vassallo, MD, FACC, FASE.
Update April 2021: The Coalition for Physician Accountability recommendations to improve the UME-GME transition will be released for comment April 26. AAIM will reactivate the work group that provided feedback about "ideal transition" to prepare the response.
Read AAIM comments
Alliance Joins Coalition Letter to Advise Biden on Biomedical Research
December 2020—AAIM joined 348 member organizations in the Ad Hoc Group for Medical Research to commend US President-Elect Joseph R. Biden for his support of growth for NIH as part of $300 billion in new research and development investments in his Build Back Better plan. In the months and years ahead, the coalition urges attention to:
- Foundational principles that promote both a thriving scientific enterprise and public trust in science.
- Emergency supplemental funding to allow NIH to continue to make progress against COVID-19 and to resume pre-pandemic research.
- Sustained, robust growth for NIH’s base budget across scientific disciplines and disease areas.
Read the letter