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ACPE Launches School for CMOs

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, June 16, 2014

As rising numbers of physicians seek to be hired by hospitals, chief medical officers must understand how to lead and manage clinicians who are accustomed to acting with great autonomy.

The times, they are a changin', and physicians need new skills, knowledge and strategies to fill today's leadership jobs, especially if they strive to fill chief medical officer slots in their organizations.

That's the belief of the American College of Physician Executives, the largest association for physician leaders in the U.S. ACPE has partnered with The Joint Commission to launch what it's calling a first-of-its kind CMO Academy.

Physician chiefs must learn to coordinate and guide integration between private practice doctors, skilled nursing homes, accountable care organizations, affiliated health services like home health agencies or population health interventions, relationships that barely or loosely existed just a few years ago, says Peter Angood, MD, ACPE president and CEO.

That may mean tapping colleagues on the shoulder to ask why they are ordering a particular test or procedure, or why they aren't ordering one, or why their patients have high rates of readmission, he acknowledges. CMOs-in-training also learn tactful strategies to drive quality and utilization rates toward acceptable levels.

As rising numbers of physicians seek to be hired by hospitals, and hospitals to employ them, CMOs must also understand their new role as an employer and manager of clinicians who used to be peers and who are accustomed to acting with great autonomy.

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