Is Hard Work and Dedication Enough? : Emergency Medicine News

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Is Hard Work and Dedication Enough?

Russell, Gerald MD

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Emergency Medicine News 29(3):p 3, March 2007. | DOI: 10.1097/01.EEM.0000264664.46214.3c


    First, let me say that I am not boarded in emergency medicine, I cannot grandfather in, and I could not even find a residency that was willing to let me return for the necessary training to become boarded. (Apparently there is a problem with those who have already completed one residency returning for another.) Having explained that, I agree in principle with the stand of ACEP and others that there does have to be a cut-off where one has to be residency trained to classify himself as a board certified specialist in that field.

    I note in the past few issues of Emergency Medicine News, however, that apparently most of the currently board certified emergency physicians are against the LLSA because they feel it is unnecessarily burdensome and that their years of experience, dedication, and hard work should be sufficient to prove that they are qualified emergency physicians without the extra paperwork of the LLSA. In the last issue (“Where is the Evidence for the LLSA?” [letter] EMN 2006;28[11]:3), the statement was made that there was no proof that the LLSA would improve the quality of care or prove the quality of the individual physician.

    I'm sorry, but that sounds like essentially the same argument that non-boarded emergency physicians have made for years in the argument over certification. If years of experience, dedication, and hard work are sufficient to prove you are a good emergency physician and thus the LLSA is irrelevant, why does that same argument not apply to residency training/board certification?

    Understand that I am not advocating that ABEM allow all of us to grandfather in at this late date, but it would be nice to be a little better understood by our boarded colleagues now that they find themselves in a similar situation. Perhaps they will be more willing to provide us, their non-boarded colleagues, with a little support and recognition for our efforts as we also strive to provide quality emergency medicine in today's world.

    Gerald Russell, MD

    Mayfield, KY

    © 2007 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.