David A. Fleming, MD, MA
Based on the 11th Annual John Harvey Lecture presented at Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 9 April 2015.
Disclosures: The author has disclosed no conflicts of interest. Forms can be viewed at www.acponline.org/authors/icmje/ConflictOfInterestForms.do?msNum=M15-2527.
Editors' Disclosures: Christine Laine, MD, MPH, Editor in Chief, reports that she has no financial relationships or interests to disclose. Darren B. Taichman, MD, PhD, Executive Deputy Editor, reports that he has no financial relationships or interests to disclose. Cynthia D. Mulrow, MD, MSc, Senior Deputy Editor, reports that she has no relationships or interests to disclose. Deborah Cotton, MD, MPH, Deputy Editor, reports that she has no financial relationships or interest to disclose. Jaya K. Rao, MD, MHS, Deputy Editor, reports that she has stock holdings/options in Eli Lilly and Pfizer. Sankey V. Williams, MD, Deputy Editor, reports that he has no financial relationships or interests to disclose. Catharine B. Stack, PhD, MS, Deputy Editor for Statistics, reports that she has stock holdings in Pfizer.
Requests for Single Reprints: David A. Fleming, MD, MA, University of Missouri School of Medicine, MA412 Health Sciences Center, 1 Hospital Drive, Columbia, MO 65212; e-mail, email@example.com.
Author Contributions: Conception and design: D.A. Fleming.
Drafting of the article: D.A. Fleming.
Critical revision for important intellectual content: D.A. Fleming.
Final approval of the article: D.A. Fleming.
Fleming DA. The Moral Agency of Physician Organizations: Meeting Obligations to Advocate for Patients and the Public. Ann Intern Med. 2015;163:918-921. doi: 10.7326/M15-2527
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Published: Ann Intern Med. 2015;163(12):918-921.
The close of the American College of Physician's (ACP) centennial year is an opportune time to reflect on the organization's important role in professional development and advocating for sound health policy. Organized medicine provides a professional home where members can participate in scholarly activities and access guidance that will help them to be better doctors. Professional organizations also serve patients by improving physicians' knowledge and skill, being a public repository of health-related information, and advocating for improvement of public health. High-functioning medical professional organizations, such as ACP, also function intentionally as moral agents through well-designed efforts to advocate for patients and the public.
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