The ABFM’s Center for Docs Who Can’t Practice Good and Want to Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too


This may be first time I ever had to comment about the same topic the next day after Pat Conrad MD did the same one.  I cannot let this go, however.  His blog post was great. Please read it.  The problem is that I can’t stop laughing, and crying, about this.  Here is their announcement:

The American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM) and the ABFM Foundation are pleased to announce the establishment of the Center for Professionalism and Value in Health Care based in Washington, D.C.

Now you see why I named this blog above.  Can you see the comparison to Zoolander?

The ABFM’s Center for Docs Who Can’t Practice Good and Want to Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too

Ok, so that’s the funny part.  Now the sad part. They are stealing our money from the MOC to basically form a beachhead to dictate health policy.  This is so dirty that it is beyond the pale.  They say in their PR announcement that the “ABFM Foundation has decided to make a strategic investment” into this.  Investment?  That is our money they are using as Dr. Wes Fisher has exposed!

For instance, while the public only has access to the ABFM’s tax forms to disclose the financial dealings of the organization, we quickly see that MOC continues to be a windfall for the ABFM. In fact, in 2014 MC-FM fees (the ABFM’s MOC program equivalent) contributed 46.4% ($12,776,905) of their $27,525,430 annual haul from ABFM diplomates. These fees helped support Dr. Puffer’s $803,687 annual compensation and the organizations’ $3,521,629 “donations” made to their “ABFM Foundation” and “Pisacano Leadership Foundation.” (In 2012 and 2013 these “donations” were even larger: $6,147,376 and $7,878,535 respectively). MOC also helped fund the ABFM Executive’s first class and companion air travel and their Directors’ first class air travel and a $1,449,525 retirement package with $435,000 in post-retirement medical benefits. No wonder MOC is such a great deal and needs to continue!

So, to summarize, the ABFM takes its profit and turns it over to the ABFM Foundation to make it look like they don’t make that much. It’s a legal way to LAUNDER money.  Then the ABFM Foundation’s coffer swells so much they have to use this money and therefore form this “center” to lobby and dictate policy.  I guarantee the first thing they do is make sure the MOC continues so their money train never stops:

The Center will seek to define value across the healthcare spectrum, reaching beyond medicine to engage the broader healthcare community as well as patients and families to consider what they believe professionalism and value mean, how to measure it, how to improve it, and how to engage and develop leaders.

How would you like to bet that “professionalism” to them means……..maintenance of certification?!

Please help stop this travesty.  Donate to Dr. Wes GoFundMe page and let’s kill the MOC.

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Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  6 comments for “The ABFM’s Center for Docs Who Can’t Practice Good and Want to Learn to Do Other Stuff Good Too

  1. Kurt
    July 11, 2018 at 6:03 pm

    Thank you Doug to keep this out there. Please donate so the ball can be started to castigate the evil abfm. Currently a little less than $40k left to get it starts. This is legit folks and you know this it right!

    • Pat
      July 11, 2018 at 8:55 pm

      Amen Kurt. Be assured, I sent my check in. The ABFM operatives are scum.

      • Kurt
        July 11, 2018 at 10:46 pm

        I’ve seen where residents have tossed in $50 bucks or so. God bless ’em.
        This will benefit them so they avoid this so-called “burnout” (which I call
        simple anger at the system) can pass by them.
        Me, I’ll be gone before any of this would benefit me but I assure you I put
        a good chunk in there and might be able to do some more.
        Hopefully will be around to see this to fruition even though I may be in a retired

  2. PW
    July 11, 2018 at 9:30 am

    Yes, professionalism is a code word for having to follow the ABMS version including MOC and their ridiculous testing. Just like “quality” is a code word for cheap and skimping on care.

  3. Rick Singel
    July 11, 2018 at 9:18 am

    Steve O’, your analysis of bureaucracies is scary, yet accurate.
    And so it goes with all of our professional “clubs”.
    I remember that when I returned to DC for the first time as an adult, I recoiled at the lavish, glorious, luxurious little village that had become. I was livid for the first 24 hours. OUR money spirals up to DC where they use it to make THEIR dream lives. My family could not settle me down.
    I’m still angry, years later.
    You know, all the Millenials clamoring for socialism amuse me. The don’t realize that there will always be the layer at the top, living well, doing fine, making bags of money while we will have less choices than we do now.
    I do feel sorry for newly minted Physicians and Dentists who will never know how it used to be, how it should be. They think the MOC is routine. They don’t appreciate the oppressiveness that is overtaking us. They know nothing else.

  4. Steve O'
    July 11, 2018 at 8:43 am

    The Star Wars analogy is quite appropriate for Washington, which is adept at fusing massive bureaucracies into behemoths, whicht roam about attacking evil and helping friends.
    Washington is an eight-year-old’s fantasy of the universe. I imagine the Star Wars AT-AT, an obviously ridiculous war machine, is the model for Washingtonian behemoths. It is huge, brainless, top-heavy and ungainly. Tangle its legs, and it simply falls over.
    In the physiology of these behemoths, a select few get to be the “brains” of the organization; the bureaucrats administer the internal operations and physiology of the behemoth; and more importantly, the money to run the whole enterprise is extracted from the vast majority of voiceless members.
    It doesn’t really matter what premises are on which the individual behemoth is founded – ABFM or NRA or Department of the Interior. The goal of any bureaucracy is to grow in money, power and influence. The doing of things has long been out of fashion in Washington. To “lobby and dictate policy” is what they live for.
    These pompous habits are nothing new. They gave us Rome and then the fall of Rome; the Aztec Empire and then the fall of the Aztec Empire; the Khmer cities and their fall and the return of the jungle to their streets and temples. Perhaps in a thousand years, explorers will tour the ruins in the forest of Washington, and pass the temple of the ABFM, and puzzle – what did this have to do with family medicine? If only we knew more. Sadly, what the explorers likely would not know is, that it never had anything to do with family medicine, but just was a toy for the confused and comfortable.

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