COVID-19 Presents an Urgency for Hospital Groups and Other Healthcare Providers to Update Medical Staff Bylaws

Medical staff bylaws provide rules under which organizations govern their operational affairs. Sometimes, however, bylaws are written in such a way that they hinder rather than promote the assurance of quality standards. To avoid such situations, organizations often form review committees that periodically review bylaws to identify rules that are no longer relevant or helpful.

Consider how the COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed hiring practices for some hospital groups. Faced with a shortage of qualified physicians to treat COVID-19 patients, hospitals are turning to retired physicians for help, and some organizations are even granting exceptions to medical students by temporarily waiving medical license and board certification requirements. Unfortunately, some organizations still maintain bylaws that recognize physicians certified by particular certification bodies only.

At the American Board of Physician Specialties® (ABPS), we certify qualified physicians in a range of medical specialties. Our strict eligibility requirements and psychometrically evaluated certification exams ensure that every specialist certified by one of our Member Boards has the expertise to deliver nothing less than world-class medical care. Our Diplomates practice at some of the most respected institutions in North America and are considered leaders in their chosen field.

If the goal of bylaws is to recruit the most qualified candidates, then updating rules to include ABPS-certified specialists makes sense. It would effectively give patients who are now in dire need access to the expert medical care that our accomplished Diplomates can provide.

Health experts predict that COVID-19 disruptions may continue for several months, and that, sadly, the health of many more people will be affected. Even as social restrictions ease in the coming months, new cases will arise. With healthcare systems under stress, now is the ideal time for hospital leaders to amend their medical staff bylaws to ensure that they have the most qualified physicians on staff.

For more information about the ABPS and our comprehensively skilled Diplomates, contact us today.

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Patient Care Is Our Priority

Medical organizations throughout North America understand that our rigorous certification standards prove that ABPS Diplomates are capable of delivering the best patient care possible.

The American Board of Physician Specialties has provided me with the opportunity to demonstrate mastery of internal medicine through board certification. As a hospitalist, board certification is an expected credential, and hospitals recognize the American Board of Physician Specialties (ABPS) as one of the three standard credentialling bodies for Internal Medicine. Additionally, the ABPS has helped me develop leadership skills as a Board member and Committee Chairperson. ABPS has also helped me sharpen critical thinking skills as a test question developer and reviewer. The Allopathic (MD) and Osteopathic (DO) physicians in the ABPS are lifelong learners and frequently pursue multiple board certifications. I enjoy the camaraderie of my peers in ABPS.

Loren Jay Chassels, DO
Internal Medicine
When I think historically, advancement in medicine and patient safety and care has been driven by the diversity of people and scientific thought. That’s what I found at the ABPS and more. For over 60 years that is just who we are. I found a physician certifying body that provides a choice and voice to all physicians ensuring that patients are always placed first.

Jerry Allison, MD
Emergency Medicine
When I decided to pursue a full time role as a physician executive it was important to me to obtain additional professional training, education and work experience. Board certification through the ABPS in Administrative Medicine is validation of my efforts and a demonstration of dedication to professional development. We need more physicians to become full time health care executives, knowing there is a board certification option in Administrative Medicine encourages physicians to take the leap from full time clinical practice to healthcare organizational leadership.

Richard Paula, MD
Administrative Medicine