At the American Osteopathic Association House of Delegates 88th annual meeting in Chicago, AOA Executive Director John Crosby presented an annual report illustrating the organizations fitness financially, politically andbecause of the reported success of outgoing president Pete Ajlunis Fit for Life initiative physically as well.
The group also installed osteopathic ophthalmologist Carlo DiMarco, a professor and regional dean of clinical medicine at the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine, Erie, Pa., as its new president on Saturday.
Crosby reported that the organizations membership this year topped 38,000 for the first time in the AOAs 111-year history, has almost $28.5 million in the bank, and is coming off a legislative victory which helped substitute a scheduled 10.6% Medicare pay cut with a modest pay increase.
We won! Crosby exclaimed, and noted that the legislation adds up to between $35,000 and $40,000 more in the pocket of the average osteopathic doctor, or D.O., who treats Medicare patients. Your dues dollars count.
Although Crosby and the AOA annual report both mentioned the 38,000-member figurewhich is up from last years total of 37,401the organization reports that membership currently stands at 37,741. Either way, the organization still counts more than 60% of the nations osteopaths as its members. The AOAs Osteopathic Medical Profession Report notes that there were 61,379 living D.O.s in the U.S. last year, with 54,707 in active practice.
In his address, Ajluni commented on his international travels as president, which included a visit with Prince Charles of Great Britain, and he highlighted the success of his Fit for Life initiative, which was marked by fun-run fitness walks in numerous states which included the participation and sponsorship of local osteopathic physicians and organizations.
Over the course of the two-day meeting, delegates will deliberate on issues such as taser safety, suicide prevention, pediatric medical imaging, reimbursement for e-mail consults, and regulations for office-based surgery. -- by Andis Robeznieks