Internal Medicine Meeting 2015 heads to Boston

With ACP's centennial this year, several session at the organization's annual meeting will celebrate the past 100 years of membership.

ACP's Internal Medicine Meeting is always an opportunity for internists to gather and celebrate the College, but this year it's a particularly big occasion. Internal Medicine Meeting 2015, to be held in Boston from April 30 to May 2 with precourses on April 28 and 29, will include celebration of the College's centennial.

Several educational sessions will look back over ACP's 100 years, starting on Friday morning at 9:30 with “The History of Annals of Internal Medicine and the Future of Medical Journals,” presented by Annals editor-in-chief Christine Laine, MD, FACP. At 2:15 p.m., meeting attendees can pick up more historical knowledge during “Defining Internal Medicine: The History of the ACP,” and on Saturday at 4 p.m., they can learn about both ACP and medicine's past during “History of Politics in American Medicine.”

The anniversary will come up in some of the meeting's usual sessions, as well, such as the updates in subspecialties. “Each of the updates is going to start with a landmark article in that subspecialty from Annals from any time over the past 100 years,” said Barbara Licht, ACP's director of educational meetings and conferences.

The centennial and the meeting's location have also motivated a new precourse, “Aesthetic Attention: Art and Clinical Skills.” Attendees who preregister by April 1 can join this course on Wednesday afternoon at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts to have art educators and an expert clinical diagnostician help them improve their observation skills, both in art appreciation and the patient exam.

A very different off-site centennial event will be offered on both Wednesday and Friday at 4 p.m. Attendees can take a bus from the convention center to tour the Boston Health Care for the Homeless Program's primary care clinic. Also in conjunction with the clinic, the College will collect new, unopened socks and underwear for the homeless at various locations in the convention center.

On the more light-hearted side, attendees can celebrate the centennial by posing with a life-size cutout of William Osler, reviewing a timeline of ACP history, or shopping for special centennial College products.

One other new session, special this year, has been tied in with the centennial. On Thursday at 11:15 a.m., “Award-Winning Innovations in High-Value Care” will feature winners of a recent competition sharing their inspirational stories and answering questions about high-value care.

The theme of high-value care will carry through the meeting, according to ACP Scientific Program Committee Chair Lisa Ellis, MD, FACP. “I believe internists are wanting guidance on how to choose the right tests and treatments for the right patients, in a cost-efficient and quality-effective manner. As a goal in planning for this meeting, the committee was very thoughtful in asking presenters to provide this guidance and draw out those recommendations whenever possible,” said Dr. Ellis, who is chief medical officer of the Medical College of Virginia Physicians in Richmond and Governor for ACP's Virginia chapter.

Many past meeting attendees have shown strong interest in hands-on activities offered in the Herbert S. Waxman Clinical Skills Center. New this year, access to Waxman Center activities and clinical skills workshops will require preregistration. Tickets are available online, and for events that sell out, stand-by registration will be an option at the meeting.

“Many Waxman Center activities now offer 2 Maintenance of Certification (MOC) points for successful completion of the session,” noted Ted Warren, ACP's manager of educational programs.

For those focused on Maintenance of Certification, a new precourse on Wednesday will provide a workshop on transforming your medical practice to connect quality to practice assessment MOC. MOC exam preparation will once again be offered on both Tuesday and Wednesday.

In addition to meeting the needs of U.S. doctors, the Internal Medicine Meeting is expanding its offerings to international attendees. For the first time, several sessions of the meeting will be simultaneously translated into Spanish.

For those who are too distant or for other reasons unable to attend the meeting, there's another big change this year. Selected sessions on Saturday will be simulcast over the Internet to virtual meeting attendees.

“They'll be able to see and hear the speakers in real time, for 1 session in each time period. The sessions chosen are some of the most popular formats and are on topics highly relevant to patient care,” said Ms. Licht. “Included in the simulcast will be the [Internal Medicine Meeting 2015] highlights session, so people who subscribe to the simulcast will hear take-home messages from sessions way beyond those they're able to see.”

The simulcast of 7 sessions will be available in real time or for later download at a cost of $179 for ACP members and $239 for nonmembers. Virtual attendees who watch the sessions in real time will also have the opportunity to chat with others who are logged into the session.

It's all part of the ongoing efforts to always offer more at the meeting and to duly mark this big anniversary for the College, according to Dr. Ellis.

“The opportunities get better each year for attendees to focus their days on cutting-edge information, clinical refreshers, controversial aspects of medicine, but also to customize their learning experiences on a variety of topics such as administration, leadership, or hands-on break-outs in the Waxman Center,” she said. “The bar is set just a little higher for distinction and merit due to the addition of the coinciding 100-year centennial celebration for ACP. It will be the best of the best, in my opinion.”