Just a short announcement about a survey I received from a the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill (NAMI) of Greater Des Moines of Iowa. Apparently there is a new organization allied with NAMI called AMOS (A Mid-Iowa Organizing Strategy). I can’t find out much more about it from my office computer because there’s a block on the site set by our IT security team.
Anyway, AMOS has formed a Mental Health Workforce Workgroup which sent, via the Iowa Psychiatric Society, a short survey to find out what opinions Iowa psychiatrists have about why we remain a psychiatrist shortage area. AMOS (them, not me) then plans to take the information to the Iowa legislature in an effort to increase the numbers of qualified mental health professionals in Iowa.
I’m all for it, and not just because the group bears the initials that form my last name. A couple of the questions bear directly on an issue which I think could potentially inhibit the recruitment of any physician to Iowa. The questions are, paraphrasing, what are the reasons why more psychiatrists don’t choose to practice in Iowa and what incentives might help attract more psychiatrists?
One barrier is the Iowa Board of Medicine’s (IBM) collaboration with the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) ill-advised Maintenance of Licensure (MOL) program which would essentially tie Maintenance of Certification (MOC) to obtaining and renewing a state medical license.
As many of you know, I’ve been communicating with the IBM and the Iowa Medical Society (IMS) for several years about my support of the principle of lifelong learning but opposition to MOC and MOL as vehicles for putting the principle into practice. The IMS adopted my resolution opposing MOL in the spring of 2013 and I’ve introduced another one opposing MOC, specifically prohibiting the connection of MOC with licensure, hospital privileges, or assignment to insurance networks.
I just returned the survey with my opinion. Maybe AMOS can help us keep MOL out of Iowa and keep physicians in. While they’re talking to the legislators, maybe they can pass them a copy of the American Legislative Exchange Councils (ALEC) model legislation for keeping MOL out of the state and back in the swamp where it belongs.
Don’t forget to sign my petition to oppose MOL in Iowa.