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    In defense of Sen. Rand Paul

     

    What these California MDs did was undoubtedly bold and risky. Behind the scenes there was probably a significant degree of ugliness in the development of NBPS. But that probably doesn’t matter to cardiologists interested in reasonable MOC, since it would seem as though they are more interested in substance. Perhaps these behaviors are more typical of the personality selected in the cardiology subspecialty. I found in my year of medicine/medical school, that those destined for the cath lab were disproportionately self-governing and more interested in content. 

    Given the cardiology/ABIM context, the ease with which physicians agreed and trusted one another, as well as their preference for substance, I find ophthalmology’s response to Sen. Paul’s efforts to establish a competing organization dissatisfying. The ABO has a clear advantage in offering the public a standardized approach, and any pre-existing monopoly tends to have a clean-shaven face and a more-polished reputation. 

    Sen. Paul’s NBO was dysfunctional and poorly orchestrated. His family—mostly holders of a bachelors degree and sometimes unaware of their status in the organization—made up the board of directors. He wasn’t able to adequately represent or fully supply the criteria for his certification, and some have described the test as “open book.”

    The NBO ultimately failed and was not recognized by any state organization, including Kentucky where certification is not required to practice ophthalmology. 

    NEXT: But does it really matter?

    Zack Oakey, MD
    Zack Oakey, MD, is an ophthalmology resident at the University of California, Irvine.

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    • Anonymous
      This makes total sense. The ABO has had this policy in place now for 23 years and those older ophthalmologists who were part of the old guard are now retired or dead. This leaves the rest of us with a two tiered system. It is high time that ALL diplomates receive the SAME treatment and also that the "MOC" be more reasonable to those of us in mid life with busy personal and professional lives. The ABO is simply an organization of our own colleagues adding to the administrative burden of all practicing ophthalmologists and they can demonstrate NO meaningful benefit to their recent changes to MOC to merit the current system. I have finished 3 cycles of recertification (being in the first year of the non-permanent lifetime certificants) and they can go to hell if they think I'll do it again. All the members of the ABO board should hear from its members and be more accountable for caring on this charade...and that's all it is
    • Anonymous
      This makes total sense. The ABO has had this policy in place now for 23 years and those older ophthalmologists who were part of the old guard are now retired or dead. This leaves the rest of us with a two tiered system. It is high time that ALL diplomates receive the SAME treatment and also that the "MOC" be more reasonable to those of us in mid life with busy personal and professional lives. The ABO is simply an organization of our own colleagues adding to the administrative burden of all practicing ophthalmologists and they can demonstrate NO meaningful benefit to their recent changes to MOC to merit the current system. I have finished 3 cycles of recertification (being in the first year of the non-permanent lifetime certificants) and they can go to hell if they think I'll do it again. All the members of the ABO board should hear from its members and be more accountable for caring on this charade...and that's all it is
    • Anonymous
      This makes total sense. The ABO has had this policy in place now for 23 years and those older ophthalmologists who were part of the old guard are now retired or dead. This leaves the rest of us with a two tiered system. It is high time that ALL diplomates receive the SAME treatment and also that the "MOC" be more reasonable to those of us in mid life with busy personal and professional lives. The ABO is simply an organization of our own colleagues adding to the administrative burden of all practicing ophthalmologists and they can demonstrate NO meaningful benefit to their recent changes to MOC to merit the current system. I have finished 3 cycles of recertification (being in the first year of the non-permanent lifetime certificants) and they can go to hell if they think I'll do it again. All the members of the ABO board should hear from its members and be more accountable for caring on this charade...and that's all it is
    • Anonymous
      Did you ever meet Rand Paul ? his history of unpleasant run ins have been well know through out his career . I think that he is self centered to the point of being unreasonable . His NBO was a failure because of not only the way he went about,but it has always been his way or the highway > i suggest you personally meet up with some people who did work with him including his fellow residents at Duke . > i think your tone might be different > He is very smart but that does not make him a great person and I would predict a very poor and unpredictable president . I think his past will haunt him if he gets into the nomination . Time will tell , but I am certainly one of those old farts that have not retired and am still practicing actively at the age of 65. Somewhere seniority does count and sometimes you can draw the line of when things become a classic and or need new tires-but not always is it right or easy !. I am glad i did not have to recertify but that is for another day !!. IF THIS COUNTRY FINDS RAND PAUL AS PRESIDENT IT WILL BE IN BIG TROUBLE !

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