(Left to right) David L. Cannon, MD; Frederick M. Azar, MD, AAOS second vice-president; Fred C. Redfern, MD, BOC chairman; Brian Baker, executive director of TOS; John R. Tongue, AAOS president; P. Merrill White, TOS president; Gregory A. Mencio, MD; and John J. McGraw, MD.


Published 7/1/2012

Tennessee Orthopaedic Society awarded top honor

The Tennessee Orthopaedic Society (TOS) was awarded the 2012 State Orthopaedic Society Achievement Award for its successes in the areas of membership recruitment, advocacy, and organizational development. P. Merrill White, MD, TOS president, accepted the award, which was presented during the National Orthopaedic Leadership Conference (NOLC) in Washington, D.C.

The annual award honors a state orthopaedic society that has had a measurable impact in addressing problems facing its membership. It recognizes the creativity employed by the society in its approach to issues and honors the overall achievements of the society.

Over the last 2 years, TOS increased its membership by 93 percent, in part by redefining its categories for membership and making membership free for orthopaedic residents. TOS also changed its dues structure, offering orthopaedic group practices discounted rates for 100 percent participation.

At the same time, TOS increased its political visibility through meetings with state legislators, involvement in the Orthopaedic Political Action Committee, and participation in the NOLC and state legislative activities. Specifically, the society has been involved with the following:

  • passing tort reform
  • preventing physical therapists from changing scope of practice definitions
  • filing workers compensation “silent PPOs” bills
  • dealing with new coverage issues from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee

TOS has also increased its member involvement in the annual conference planning process, revamped its website, and established an electronic newsletter to communicate with TOS members and increase awareness of the society among orthopaedic surgeons in the state. It has begun producing webinars on topics of interest to orthopaedic surgeons and their administrators and has established a new business program that offers special and/or discounted services to members.

Although grants from the AAOS State Society Assistance Funding program have helped make some of these programs possible, the considerable efforts made by the TOS and its members in implementing them have turned these ideas into reality.