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GSACEP Authored Passed Council Resolutions 2021

Torree McGowan, MD FACEP

Listening to Greg Henry stand up and speak fluent Latin as he regales hundreds of EM physicians with tales from his long career is always the highlight of my professional year. Each fall at ACEP Council, he shares the mic with EM legends like Judy Tintinalli, Billy Mallon, Linda Lawrence, and Larry Bedard.

The ACEP Council is held every year the two days immediately prior to the Scientific Assembly. The Council is made up of around 500 emergency physicians representing all state chapters and College sections. These EM leaders debate topics raised by ACEP members, and through the Council process of debating and revising resolutions, these actions set priorities for the ACEP Board of Directors and ACEP staff for the coming year’s activities.

Traditionally, GSACEP has not been very involved in the advocacy efforts of the College because of the restrictions on active-duty members participating in political activity. However, several recent years have shown the power of the ACEP Council to address problems in the military and federal health care systems, using ACEP to amplify the voices of our members.

Our first landmark victory was having Department of Defense prescription information included in prescription drug monitoring databases in 2018. Prior to this Resolution, which went on to be included in the National Defense Authorization Act, military pharmacies would not release opiate prescription information to databases, increasing the risk to our military members in the face of the opiate epidemic.  Thanks to the hard work of GSACEP members led by LTC Laura Tilley this loophole has closed and our military members are safer.

In 2021, GSACEP authored two resolutions which were passed by the ACEP Council. The first proposed a framework for providing leadership training for physician-led collaborative care teams. In the face of increasing unsupervised non-physician provider care, little training exists to teach physicians how to work as the leader of these interdisciplinary teams. Based on our experience with leadership development, GSACEP will spearhead this effort to increase collaboration on teams.

The second Resolution called for the creation of a specialized toolkit and teams of experts in scope of practice expansion issues. Nurse practitioners and physician assistants are legislating their way to unsupervised practice in multiple states across the nation. ACEP strongly believes in the importance of physician-led teams in emergency care, and this resolution led to the creation of a media toolkit with talking points available for members to use in discussions with their local legislators or commands, as well as providing support for state level advocacy with experts in scope of practice expansion.

The Council is an opportunity to ask ACEP to represent issues that are important to you, our GSACEP members.  If there is an issue that would benefit from state-level advocacy, please email the PR/Advocacy Committee Chair at jstremic@gmail.com with information on your issue, and we will advocate on your behalf.

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