Having worked in healthcare since the early 1970s, I would suggest that merely turning to the government for solutions is tremendously misguided [“The Election Effect,” December 2008]. Government involvement in the regulation and funding of healthcare has not improved quality, increased access, nor decreased cost. It has created a climate of entitlement, lack of patient accountability for their own health, and wasteful regulation that absorbs hours of provider time and energy that should be used to serve patients. I would rather urge healthcare providers to take leadership on these issues. Who better to establish standards of care and methods of care delivery than those doing the work? What in the world do politicians know about healthcare?

The goal of any government is to perpetuate itself and the more we depend on government, the more costly the system will become, the less access there will be, and the less we will have to say about the jobs we do. This is true in any government-run healthcare system worldwide.
p jacobson*
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Congrat, NC-CME

A great article about a great accomplishment [“Mission Accomplished,” December 2008]! It has been 28 years since Richard Wilbur, MD, former head of the Council of Medical Specialty Societies, and I drafted a white paper recommending that the board of the Alliance for CME undertake a certification program. That proposal and subsequent efforts within the Alliance failed. Judy Ribble [PhD, CCMEP, executive director, National Commission for the Certification of CME Professionals] was a member of a group that started talking about an independent commission some eight years ago — and her persistence has borne fruit. Congratulations to NC-CME and all the brave souls (myself included) who dared take the first round of exams despite our fear of failure.
bestpractice*
Comment via the Web

Bravo for CEJA Turnaround

Bravo for this proposed reversal to ban commercial support from CME events [“CEJA Takes New Stance on Commercial Support,” Medical Meetings Extra, November 20, 2008]. I believe that a few bad apples are hampering our ability to host quality CME events. Commercial support is a win-win proposition for the industry reps, the participants, and the hosting organization. The hosting organization should always maintain control of the program, the content, and the delivery of the material. However, there is a minority of providers that have not done this and [the resulting] industry influence has been detrimental to the learning experience. Thus, the majority of us that do maintain control of our programs have been penalized.
berggolf*
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