Update: Well, that didn’t take long. The UVM medical school has reportedly withdrawn the offer of credit for the RTL symposium.
Updated Update: It’s now 4:00 pm Monday, and we have yet to hear officially from Larner College. It would seem in the institution’s best interest to put out this fire as quickly as possible. Is there some dithering going on?
You’d think that leaders of a medical school would be smart. Guess not.
The news that the University of Vermont’s Larner College of Medicine is offering continuing education credit for medical professionals who attend a conference of Vermont Right to Life beggars credulity. On just about every level. It’s a PR nightmare, an abdication of professional oversight, and a tacit endorsement of politically-inspired junk science.
Let’s begin by defining “continuing medical education.” According to the American Medical Association, CME is meant to “maintain, develop, or increase the knowledge, skills and professional performance and relationships that a physician uses to provide services for patients, the public or the profession.”
So tell me, how does attending a presentation entitled “The Case Against Proposal 5” (the constitutional amendment protecting reproductive rights) improve a medical professional’s performance in providing services for patients?
That’s the issue, even before we get to the politics of giving credit for a Right to Life event in a strongly pro-choice state, and the dubious “science” concocted by RTL and its allies. There’s no way it’s appropriate to give medical education credit for attending a political meeting of a group that has no connection to the medical profession.
It should also be noted that UVM’s doctors are reimbursed for professional expenses, including CME courses. So presumably, some of the University’s dollars will go into the coffers of Right to Life.
I hope there are some emergency meetings around UVMMC this morning, with learned important people trying to devise a face-saving way out of this shande. Because they need to find one, pronto.Continue reading