Long-Term Care

Testing aging surgeons’ skills

MDS 3.0 Insider, June 16, 2016

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A growing number of physicians are working well beyond the traditional retirement age, leading health systems to create policies to test the physical, cognitive, and clinical skills of its surgeons. In 2014, there were nearly 100,000 physicians in their 70s still practicing, up 2% from 2012, according to an estimate from the Journal of Medical Regulation.

An AMA report from 2015 found that poor performance on quality measures was more apparent with clinicians age 60 or older. Those measures included mortality and patient length of stay. However, organizations such as the AMA and the American College of Surgeons don’t favor mandatory retirement, leaving it up to hospitals and health systems to determine their own best practices and policies to test aging surgeons’ skills.

The University of Virginia Health System in Charlottesville, Lucie Packard Children’s Hospital of Stanford Children’s Health, Texas A&M Rural and Community Health Institute in College Station all have policies for mandatory physical and cognitive exams every two years for all medical staff 70 or older.

Source: Modern Healthcare



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