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Frank O’Connell, MD
The Intensivists In Practice Committee is actually a subcommittee of the Internal Medicine Section of the Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM). Chaired by Leo Rotello, MD, FCCM, and Paul Yodice, MD, FCCP, FCCM, the committee was formed roughly four years ago in response to the Internal Medicine Section’s concern that the needs of members practicing in the nonuniversity setting were not being adequately addressed. The committee consists mainly of clinicians working in a non-university hospital setting (although our university based colleagues are certainly welcome), who deal with a wide range of practical issues as they attempt to practice quality critical care medicine in this setting. Some of the challenges highlighted by our committee members include navigating the politics of clinicians impacted by a change in the status quo, negotiating with hospital administrators regarding the value associated with having a dedicated intensivist program, and developing a financial package acceptable to both the hospital administration and the physicians. Our committee has also developed sessions that highlight the development of appropriate schedules conducive to attracting and retaining quality clinicians.
Our committee is instrumental in supporting clinicians who are making a transition from an academic environment to private practice and who may be struggling with one or more of these challenges. With 70% to 80% of the healthcare in the United States delivered in a nonuniversity setting, the work of this committee has special significance and can provide an important venue for those working in or transitioning to the non-university setting to have their voices heard. This is particularly true for those who are just completing their fellowship training and who often have the most difficult time transitioning to the life of an attending physician, whether in a community- or university-based practice. Additionally, one of the committee’s major strengths is the broad-based involvement by a variety of highly qualified and vastly experienced critical care practitioners. This has led to our developing and presenting many high-quality educational sessions at the annual SCCM Congress, such as: