President's Message

By Wilford K. Gibson, MD
VOS President


Wilford Gibson
Wilford K. Gibson, MD

VOS PresidentpostitnoteNPs and PAs

Congratulations!  This October 2008 marks the 75th anniversary (1933-2008) of our Virginia Orthopaedic Society!  Did you know we were founded the same year as the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons?  Do you wonder if the ten men who met in Lynchburg in October 1933 envisioned a society that is still vibrant and improving the quality of musculoskeletal care for Virginians?  It is an honor for me to be a part of this tradition of excellence. 
As we prepare for our 61st Annual Meeting on May 2-4, 2008 at Wintergreen, I pause to thank those who have preceded me.  In particular, I would like to thank David Diduch and his team for a spectacular Annual Meeting in Charlottesville.  For the large number of you who participated, I don’t need to go over the details.  For those of you who missed, there is next year at Wintergreen and durable Continuing Medical Education (CME) from Charlottesville available on our website

I look forward to seeing most of you at Wintergreen in 2008.  Please, mark your calendars now.  Your program chairman, Dr. Doug Boardman and his assistant Mark Willis, are preparing an Annual Meeting to exceed your expectations.  We will be going to Wintergreen for the third time in 75 years.  Did you know our last meeting at Wintergeen was in 1990 and our guest speakers were Drs. William G. Clancy, Jr. of Charlottesville and William H. Harris from Boston?  Our committed guest speakers for 2008 include Drs. Tom Thornhill of Boston and Joe Iannotti of Cleveland.  These Distinguished Professors of Orthopaedics will enlighten us and share their experiences with total hip, knee and shoulder reconstruction.  We anticipate increased audience participation and symposium formats to promote discussion.  I will keep you posted as Drs. Boardman and Willis finalize our meeting plans.  The Annual Meeting is only part of your value of membership.

Your Board of Directors and I continue to advocate on your behalf in several areas.  Recently, David Diduch, Jody Smith and I served on the Direct Access Advisory Committee and finalized discussions with the Board of Physical Therapy concerning changes to physical therapy (PT) direct access to patients.  The final plan awaiting approval by the Board of Medicine requires PTs to be graduates of a doctoral program and be in active practice for 12 months before they can see and treat patients without a physician referral.  Non-doctoral PTs must complete a transitional program and have one year of active practice experience or evidence of completion of 15 hours of continuing education, including a post-course examination, and at least three years of post-licensure, full-time clinical practice.  This is more stringent and provides better patient protection than the previous regulation.  In return, we have an agreement from the Virginia Physical Therapy Association not to pursue new legislation for five years.
Secondly, we have decided to pursue grass roots efforts rather than the Annual Legislative Reception in Richmond in January.  All members of the House of Delegates are up for reelection and we feel these local efforts will be more effective and timely. 
Members of Atlantic Orthopaedic Specialists and I recently met with Dr. Chris Stolle prior to his success in the Republican Primary on June 12.  He is up for election this fall and hopes to fill the 83rd seat vacated by the retirement of Delegate Leo Wardrup.  Dr. Stolle is a physician and practicing obstetrician and gynecologist and would be an asset in the House.  Likewise, the Board of Roanoke Orthopaedic Center met with Senator Brandon Bell concerning his primary campaign and expected general election challenge.  The physicians at Anderson Orthopaedic Clinic in Arlington and Alexandria are interested in setting up similar meetings with legislative hopefuls.  If you or your group are interested in hosting similar meetings in your community, please contact our legislative assistant Cal Whitehead in Richmond:  (804) 644-4424.
We also presented our inaugural “Legislator of the Year” award to Delegate John O’Bannon, MD in Charlottesville and anticipates having a friend and advocate in Richmond this year that we can recognize in May at Wintergreen.
Your Board of Directors and I will continue to advocate on your behalf and will continue to bring value to your membership.  Direct links to your practice website are available if you contact the VOS office.  We continue to pursue reevaluation of the Certificate of Public Need (COPN) process.  We provide durable CME on our website.  I have just penned a letter to the State Corporation Commission on behalf of the VOS to object to the Anthem petition to remove provisions of the 2002 Order that approved the Anthem-Trigon merger.  These provisions require Anthem to seek and obtain permission before moving services out of Virginia.  As you can see, there is activity on many fronts and we need your continued support of our organization. 

In conclusion, I challenge each of you to bring your new partners into our membership.  Contact the VOS office if you would like information on group billing.  We have created a new allied membership category and welcome physician assistants and nurse practitioners with a working relationship with any of our members.  I look forward to seeing all of you at Wintergreen May 2-4, 2008!

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VOS 08 Annual