SVS president to close out virtual conference with focus on quality in vascular care

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Ronald L. Dalman

As SVS ONLINE: “New Advances and Discoveries in Vascular Surgery” prepares to become part of the past, the final presentation will look toward the future.

It is part of the tradition of the Vascular Annual Meeting (VAM), which SVS ONLINE replaces this year, said new SVS president Ronald L. Dalman, MD. He will co-moderate the special session, “Assuring quality in vascular surgical care: The future of center, program and surgeon accreditation” with Matthew Eagleton, MD. Eagleton chairs the SVS Program Committee, which plans VAM educational programming.

The session will take a look at three current—and somewhat controversial issues—said Dalman: “How do we certify surgeons, accredit training programs and measure performance?”

Discussions on details overlap and opinions vary, he said. “We’re going to have some competing voices out there to discuss, ‘what is our vision for the future, for the next 10 years,’” said Dalman. “What will processes look like, what can we expect, what forces are influencing our processes and do we have agreement as to goals and pathways?”

The topics are important ones, starting out with quality issues and the quality partnership with the American College of Surgeons (ACS) as well as appropriateness of care. “How are we going to be judged, scored and benchmarked?” he said. And, following to the next step, if there are guidelines, “are you following them, is your care appropriate?”

Next up will be a look at the changes in certification. Members need to be aware of the magnitude of proposed and completed changes and how these changes will affect the specialty, Dalman said.

Other topics include hospital surveys and report cards, a discussion that began during the E. Stanley Crawford Critical Issues Forum and whether to have a separate certification board specific to vascular surgery. Finally, Dalman said, the program ends with a talk on the Association of Program Directors in Vascular Surgery (APDVS), “essentially the middleman in this certification and credentialing interaction. It’s the program directors who need to make sure training programs meet the needs of trainees and that they can be certified.

The special session opens with “The Vascular Center Verification and Quality Improvement Program: The SVS/ACS partnership to ensure quality, cost-effectiveness and ethical vascular practice,” by immediate past president Kim Hodgson, MD, of Southern Illinois University School of Medicine.

Elsewhere, “The future of vascular training program accreditation from the ACGME perspective” will be delivered by John Potts III, MD, Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

Other sessions include, “Future perspectives on vascular surgeon certification: EPAs, simulation-based testing and continuous certification,” by Gilbert R. Upchurch Jr., MD, University of Florida; “The role of quality improvement registry data in USN&WR Hospital Ranking Methodologies,” by Ben Harder, of U.S. News & World Report; “American Board of Vascular Surgery: The ABVS vision for vascular surgeon accreditation,” by Alan Dietzek, MD, Danbury Hospital; and “Accreditation for VS training programs,” to be presented by Amy B. Reed, MD, University of Minnesota, president-elect of the APDVS.

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