May 06, 2008 11:00 ET

VHA Provides Physicians With Additional Options to Maintain ABIM Board Certification

IRVING, TX--(Marketwire - May 6, 2008) - VHA Inc., the national health care alliance, is encouraging physicians in their member hospitals to leverage their use of VHA's Leading Practice Blueprints™ toward completion of the American Board of Internal Medicine's (ABIM) Maintenance of Certification program practice performance requirements.

Physicians utilizing the VHA's Leading Practice Blueprints can use this activity to complete ABIM's Hospital or Self-Directed PIM(SM) Practice Improvement Module. ABIM certifies physicians in internal medicine and its subspecialties who demonstrate the knowledge skills and attitudes essential for excellent patient care. ABIM's Maintenance of Certification program includes a requirement for self-evaluation of performance in practice.

"Physicians who engage in routine quality improvement and self-assessment activities are better equipped to deliver high quality care to patients, which is why we are excited to work with the ABIM to support physicians' efforts to complete Maintenance of Certification requirements," said Trent Haywood, M.D., J.D., chief medical officer at VHA. "Through the VHA Leading Practice Blueprints, hospitals will be able to provide an avenue to physicians who are striving to improve the quality of health care services and maintain board certification."

"Physicians are feeling unduly burdened by reporting requirements. We are pleased that the performance improvement services of an organization like VHA enable physicians to collect data that can be repurposed and used for completion of an ABIM PIM," said Cary Sennett M.D., Ph.D, senior vice president for Strategy and Clinical Analytics at the American Board of Internal Medicine.

VHA introduced its Leading Practice Blueprints™ to member hospitals earlier this year as a key component in its Clinical Improvement Services. The Leading Practice Blueprints™ provide hospitals and physicians with detailed depictions of the implemented leading practices of top performing organizations in the country. The accessibility of this information expedites the learning process and enhances and accelerates the ability of hospitals and physicians to implement performance improvement activities.

About VHA Inc. -- VHA Inc. is a national alliance of leading not-for-profit health care organizations that work together to improve the health of the communities they serve. VHA delivers industry-leading supply chain management services and enables regional and national member networks to improve clinical and operational performance, and drive sustainable results. Based in Irving, Texas, VHA has 16 local offices serving more than 1,400 hospitals and 21,000 non-acute health care organizations across the United States.

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