Resolutions, Bylaws Committees Hold Open Hearings Tomorrow

By: Richard N. Peterson, JD

The AAOS Resolutions and Bylaws Committees will conduct Open Hearings regarding the proposed resolutions and bylaw amendments for the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (Academy) and the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (Association) on Wednesday, March 15, starting at 1:00 p.m. in Room 32 of the San Diego Convention Center. The Bylaws Committee Open Hearing will start shortly after the conclusion of the Resolutions Committee Open Hearing, at around 1:30 pm.

All fellows are encouraged to participate and will have the opportunity to vote on the Committees’ recommendations shortly after the 2017 Annual Meeting.

Copies of all proposed resolutions and bylaw amendments, with the recommendations of the Board of Councilors (BOC), the Board of Specialty Societies (BOS), and the AAOS Board of Directors were included in the official meeting notice sent electronically to each fellow in January. 

The following two AAOS resolutions are being considered as part of the 5-year review process. 

Academy Resolution 1—Public Relations Efforts of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons: The BOC, BOS, and AAOS Board of Directors recommend that the Academy, in cooperation with affiliated musculoskeletal caregivers, continue to place a high priority on representing orthopaedic surgeons as highly qualified and compassionate professionals who care for the diseases of the entire musculoskeletal system. In addition, the BOC, BOS, and AAOS Board of Directors recommend that the Academy continue to appropriately fund and staff the Academy’s Communications Cabinet to carry out this high priority and to coordinate the organization’s member communications efforts.

Association Resolution 2—Reduce Medicare Fees for Orthopaedic Surgeons: The BOC, BOS, and AAOS Board of Directors recommend that this resolution be retained without change. It requires the Association to support negotiations to eliminate inequities in the physician fee schedule and remain a member of the American Medical Association/Specialty Society Relative Value Scale Update Committee. They also recommend that the Association continue to monitor and offer suggestions on improving methods of updating and correcting inappropriate physician work values and inappropriate values for Evaluation and Management codes, and continue to build coalitions with other national medical associations and public interest groups to address these serious issues.

Bylaw amendments 
Three sets of proposed bylaw amendments are being considered.

Group #1—Elimination of Nomination to the Membership Committee by the AAOS Nominating Committee; Change of Name of Membership Committee to Membership and Leader Development Committee: If adopted as recommended by the BOC, BOS, and AAOS Board of Directors, the way that the Membership Committee is populated would change from the current process of fellowship vote based on nominations from the AAOS Nominating Committee to an appointment process through the Committee Appointment Program Committee. The name of the Membership Committee would also change to Membership and Leadership Development Committee to reflect the combination of the Membership Committee and Leadership Development Program.

Group #2—Change in Composition of the AAOS Nominating Committee: Currently, the AAOS Fellowship elects six AAOS active fellows to serve on the Nominating Committee, with a former AAOS president serving as chair. If adopted as recommended by the BOC and BOS, the number of fellows elected by the fellowship would be reduced from six to four; the BOC and BOS would each elect one member. The AAOS Board of Directors recommends that fellowship not adopt Group #2 because it would result in a less democratic process by diluting the fellowship’s right to elect candidates to the AAOS Nominating Committee.

Group #3—Elimination of Affiliate Membership Classification; Creation of New Membership Category, Associate Member – Physician Assistant: If adopted as recommended by the BOC, BOS, and AAOS Board of Directors, the Affiliate Membership classification in AAOS would be eliminated and the bylaws would uniformly refer to all member (as opposed to fellow) classes as associate members of AAOS. In addition, a new membership category, Associate Member – Physician Assistant, would be created and would be open to physician assistants supervised by AAOS fellows and members.     

Richard N. Peterson, JD, is the AAOS General Counsel.