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Southern Medical Journal CME topic: healthcare disparities.


Disparities in healthcare utilization, services and outcome are prevalent throughout the United States. In this issue of the Southern Medical Journal, some of these discrepancies are examined. A study regarding medical service usage in a rural Mississippi community reveals that white children utilize physician services almost twice as often as black children, but black children present to the emergency room more frequently. Another study reveals disparities in colon cancer mortality in Texas, with 13 counties having excess mortality from this disease. A third study indicates that many emergency room patients have unmet preventive healthcare needs. The fourth paper studies the creation of the Katrina Clinic in Houston following Hurricane Katrina in 2005. By examining the formation of this short-lived, but highly effective medical facility, the steps necessary to create emergency medical services on a massive scale in a limited time period are reviewed.

Target Audience

The following CME feature was designed for physicians in all specialties, particularly those in primary care.

Purpose and Objectives

After completing this activity, participants should be familiar with some of the healthcare disparities that exist within the current medical system in the United States. Additionally, they should be cognizant of the challenges of instituting medical services on a large-scale, emergent basis, and should be better prepared to participate in a cooperative fashion with the various agencies involved should such a situation arise.

Disclosure of Relevant Financial Relationships

The Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education's (ACCME) Standards for Commercial Support approved in September 2004 require that the provider (Southern Medical Association) show that anyone who is in a position to control the content of an education activity has disclosed all relevant financial relationships with any commercial interest to the provider. A relevant relationship is defined as financial relationships in any amount occurring within the past twelve months that create a personal conflict of interest. The disclosure must include the name of the individual, the name of the commercial interest and the nature of the relationship. Individuals with no relevant financial relationship(s) must also disclose to the learner prior to the activity. Any individual involved in planning CME Activities who does not comply with this policy will not be permitted to have control of, or responsibility for, the development, management, or evaluation of SMA's CME Activity. Resolution of conflict of interest is conducted during the review process. Disclosures will be noted in the footnote of each article.

Accreditation/Credit Designation

The Southern Medical Association is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians. This CME activity was planned and produced in accordance with the ACCME Essential Areas and Elements (including the Standard for Commercial Support) and Accreditation policies. The Southern Medical Association designates this educational activity for a maximum of 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits[TM]. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Method of Participation

Participants read the entire CME feature and review illustrations, charts, bibliographies or other supplemental materials associated with the feature. A self-assessment test follows at the end of this feature that allows participants to test themselves on the knowledge obtained from the activity. Participants document their completion of this activity by submitting the CME credit form located at the end of the feature. Participants are also asked to evaluate the activity, to note specific outcomes to their practice as a result of their participation, and list other topics to be addressed in future CME features on the CME credit form.

CME Credit Instructions

Participants may request CME credit for completion of this activity by completing and submitting the CME credit form by mail, or electronically via SMA's website at A nominal fee is required to receive credit for this activity. A CME certificate will be mailed within two weeks of receipt of the CME credit form at the SMA headquarters office.

Date of Original Release: August 1, 2006

Term of Approval: 1 Year * Credit Expires: August 1, 2007

Estimated Time for Completion: 2 Hours

Credit Designation: 2 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits[TM]
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Copyright 2006, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
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Title Annotation:CME Topic
Publication:Southern Medical Journal
Geographic Code:1U6MS
Date:Sep 1, 2006
Previous Article:Retropharyngeal abscess in children: the emerging role of group A beta hemolytic Streptococcus.
Next Article:Hurricane Katrina: medical response at the Houston Astrodome/Reliant Center Complex.

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