Published 1/1/2009
Jennie McKee

Add value to your state, regional society meetings

AAOS offers ‘grand rounds’ cultural competency training

Want to add a free educational component to your state or regional orthopaedic society meeting? Consider including the AAOS seminar on Culturally Competent Care: An Orthopaedist’s Responsibility, as part of your educational program.

According to Ramon Jimenez, MD, former chair of the AAOS Diversity Advisory Board, the free training sessions are an excellent way for orthopaedists to improve their ability to communicate with patients of various ethnicities and cultural backgrounds. During the past 2 years, the training has been held at more than 30 residency programs as well as state and regional society meetings.

Dr. Jimenez has presented programs for organizations such as the Western Orthopaedic Association, the Cali­fornia Orthopaedic Association, and the Missouri Orthopaedic Society, and says that interest in providing this kind of education is increasing.

“The presidents of local orthopaedic associations realize that cultural competency training is important,” says Dr. Jimenez. “In states such as California and New Jersey, legislation ties cultural competency education to licensure. In addition, cultural competency is one of the core competencies specified by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education.”

The ‘grand rounds’ seminar
The program employs a ‘grand rounds’ format, with both didactic and interactive components. During the 60- to 90-minute session, presenters discuss various patient scenarios and distribute a free Cultural Competency Challenge CD-ROM and Culturally Competent Care Guidebook, created by the AAOS. The materials include case studies and other information on delivering culturally competent care.

“State and regional orthopaedic society meetings are good venues for this type of interactive training,” says Dr. Jimenez. “The feedback we’ve received has all been positive; people feel that the training is beneficial. We’ve had as many as 270 attendees in a session.”

When audience members say that they don’t need cultural competency training because they already treat all their patients the same, Dr. Jimenez tells them what Diversity Advisory Board member Valerae O. Lewis, MD, said to him.

“You may have to treat patients differently to treat them equally,” she advised them.

How to participate
State and/or society presidents, executive directors, and others interested in scheduling an AAOS culturally competent care seminar should e-mail the AAOS at

In addition, be sure to visit the Culturally Competent Care exhibit in Academy Row at the 2009 AAOS Annual Meeting to speak with Diversity Advisory Board members about the Academy’s diversity initiatives. Don’t forget to pick up your free copy of the Cultural Competency Challenge CD-ROM and Culturally Competent Care Guidebook.

Jennie McKee is a staff writer for AAOS Now. She can be reached at mckee@aaos.org