Larry says he married me for better or worse, but . . .
Seriously, it’s another degree.
The American Academy of Family Physicians awards the “Degree of Fellow” to members who engage in “Life-Long Learning, Practice Quality and Improvement, Volunteer Teaching, Public Service, Publishing and Research, and Service to the Specialty.” In other words, you volunteer, get involved in your community and hospital, maybe do some research, take your Boards a couple of times, keep your credentials and Continuing Medical Education up to date and other stuff, and you get to add more initials to your name. I’m not sure, where to use them, but I got ’em!
Most people don’t realize that Family Physicians are required to take our Board exams every 7 to 10 years, complete 50 hours of formal Continuing Medical Education each year, and participate in a series of studies called “Maintenance of Certification.” FP’s are always the first to invoke new standards and seem to be led by a group of masochists who aren’t happy unless we work harder than any other specialty.
Beverly B. Nuckols, MD, FAAFP, MA (Bioethics)