ASAM Board of Directors Addresses Society Business

ASAM Acting President Stuart Gitlow, M.D., (left) and Past President Louis E. Baxter, M.D., FASAM, discuss business during the ASAM Board of Directors meeting.

ASAM Acting President Stuart Gitlow, M.D., (left) and Past President Louis E. Baxter, M.D., FASAM, discuss business during the ASAM Board of Directors meeting.

The ASAM Board of Directors convened during the Medical-Scientific Conference to conduct business on a variety of issues from new strategic directions for the organization to discussing resolutions to present to the American Medical Association’s House of Delegates in June.

In terms of new strategic directions, the Board discussed finding ways to expand membership to include non-physicians and to explore development of an accreditation program for outpatient addiction practices. The Board of Directors also addressed the revision of legislative advocacy and public policy committee membership to provide opportunities for new members and to improve committee functioning.

The Board of Directors additionally approved four resolutions that ASAM will present to the AMA House of Delegates meeting in June. One resolution is based on ASAM’s recently approved policy statement on prescription drug diversion, misuse, and addiction. A second resolution sets domestic and international public health prevention targets for per capita alcohol consumption as a means of reducing the burden on non-communicable diseases on health status.

The Board of Directors further voted to increase member dues $15 per member for 2013 to cover the increased publication frequency of the Journal of Addiction Medicine (JAM) from four times a year to six times a year and participation for all ASAM members in the International Society of Addiction Medicine (ISAM).

Frank J. Vocci, Ph.D., was approved by the Board of Directors to serve as the third Co-Editor for JAM. Dr. Vocci is President and the Senior Research Scientist at the Friends Research Institute, Baltimore. The Board also approved JAM Senior Editor George F. Koob, Ph.D., and Dr. Vocci to become Honorary ASAM members, a tribute bestowed on individuals who otherwise are ineligible to be ASAM members.

In other business, the Board of Directors approved a series of bylaws changes allowing ASAM to conduct its business electronically, as needed, and in accordance with New York State Law. Additionally, the Board approved a policy to build up ASAM’s Board-designated fund to equal three months of operating expenses, or $800,000, whichever is greater.

Finally, the Board of Directors approved creating an Action Group to begin planning the Medical-Scientific Conference for 2015 and beyond.