October 5, 2020

News from the Chair

ACEP Rural Section is getting ready for an “unconventional” annual meeting at the 2020 ACEP Scientific Assembly.  This year our virtual zoom conference meeting will take place on October 28 from 11am-1pm CST.  Covid-19 has impacted all of our lives and practices and continues to affect how we work, play and meet. The high flow of information and constantly changing knowledge base and research has certainly kept our mailboxes full and kept us busy trying to provide the best and safest care for our patients.  We are still planning on being a part of the world’s largest EM conference even though we will not be able to meet in person in Dallas, TX.  Pants are recommended but not required for your zoom meeting. Watch your ACEP Rural EM Section EngagED feed for your meeting invitation link. This year’s elections will be held prior to the meeting by virtual ballot of section members. We will be sending out requests for nominations of candidates and voting ballots soon. The election results will be announced during the virtual meeting in October.  Meeting highlights for this years’ meeting will include ACEP Board liaison update on board action with respect to prior adopted Council 19 REMS section resolutions.  In-coming chairman Stephen Jameson, MD, FACEP will discuss this year’s ACEP Rural EM taskforce objectives, data and conclusions.   Darrell Carter, MD, FACEP will review updates from Comprehensive Advanced Life Support (CALS).  We will have representative from Geriatric Emergency Department Accreditation (GEDA), and National Pediatric Readiness Quality Improvement (NPRQI) discussing impact on rural emergency medicine quality improvement.  We will also have a lively debate on COVID-19 testing interpretation in the rural EM environment led by our superheroes Chris Carpenter MD, FACEP, and Ken Milne, MD, IMSc, CCFP-EM, FCFP, FRRMS.   

This year the ACEP Council 2020 is scheduled for October 24-25.   The Rural EM Section is co-sponsoring Resolution #38(20) Universal Access to Telehealth Care. 

PURPOSE: Advocate for universal access to telehealth in all rural and underserved areas of the United States and to support innovative strategies to improve individual access to broadband and cellular technology.

RESOLVED, That ACEP, in collaboration with other medical organizations, advocate for universal access to telehealth care through expanded broadband infrastructure and wireless connectivity to all rural and underserved areas of the United States as well as supporting innovative strategies to improve individual access to broadband and cellular technology.

With recent pandemic there has been a dramatic increase need for telehealth care.  Without high-quality broadband communication services telehealth usage is drastically limited. Access to primary, emergency, and specialty healthcare is limited for many Americans leading to delays in care with significant associated negative impact on health outcomes. If you are a ACEP Councilor, I would ask for your support of this resolution at Council 20. 

Please encourage your rural colleagues to join Rural EM section and the EngagED community.  We need your help and expertise.  I am looking forward to seeing you and your participation online. We must keep rural EM on the forefront of priorities for ACEP and ACEP BOD.  Thank you all for your hard work and contributions to these projects.