We will be performing site maintenance on AAOS.org on March 29th from 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM CST which may cause sitewide downtime. We apologize for the inconvenience.

Privacy Policy

This Privacy Policy explains how and for which purposes the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) collect, use, share and safeguard information (including personal information/personal data) on its various sites, such as www.aaos.orgwww.ajrr.netwww.orthoinfo.orgwww.orthoguidelines.org, mobile websites, microsites, mobile applications, AAOS profiles on AAOS social media sites and any other digital services and platforms officially operated or used by the AAOS from time to time (“Our Sites”). The terms “You” and “Your” as used here refer to all individuals and/or entities accessing the Our Sites for any reason. The terms “We”, “Us” and “Our” as used here refer to AAOS.

AAOS and its various affiliates respect Your privacy and are committed to protecting it at all times. We collect information about Our users in three ways:

  • directly from the user
  • from Our Web server logs
  • through cookies, GPS and other technologies

AAOS uses the information We collect primarily to provide You with a personalized user experience that delivers the information, resources, and services that are most relevant and helpful to You.

Our processing of Your information is based upon the following factors:

  • contract performance (e.g., Your purchase of products or membership sign-up/renewal)
  • legitimate business interest (e.g., direct marketing of goods and services)
  • compliance with law
  • Your consent where applicable

AAOS doesn’t share any of the personal information/personal data (“Personal Information”) You provide with others, unless indicated otherwise in this Privacy Policy, or at the point of submission, or when We believe in good faith that the law requires it or when necessary to provide goods or services through an affilliated entity. Before using Our various services, You should carefully review this Policy and the related Terms of Use. Only submit Personal Information and use AAOS services if You accept this Privacy Policy and the Terms of Use.

If You do not want Us to collect or process Your Personal Information in ways described in the Terms of Use and this Privacy Policy, You should end this session now and refrain from using AAOS Sites in the future.

Changes to the Privacy Policy

As Our organization, membership and benefits change from time to time, We expect this Privacy Policy to change as Well. We reserve the right to amend the Policy at any time, for any reason.  We will notify You as required by law and indicate at the end of Policy when the latest revisions occurred.

California Privacy Rights

In addition to the rights as explained in this Privacy Policy, under California’s "Shine the Light" law, California residents who provide Personal Information (as defined in the statute) to obtain AAOS products or services for personal, family, or household use are entitled to request and obtain from Us, once a calendar year, information about the Personal Information We shared, if any, with other businesses for marketing uses. If applicable, this information would include the categories of Personal Information and the names and addresses of those businesses with which We shared such Personal Information for the immediately prior calendar year (e.g., requests made in the current year will receive information about the prior year). To obtain this information, please write to Us at privacy@aaos.org and include Your full name and address and AAOS Member ID, if applicable.

European Union General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR and ePrivacy Directive)

Under the GDPR regulations, residents of the European Union can request that AAOS modify or terminate Our use of Personal Information, including the right to be forgotten. Due to the complex nature of the many systems that can hold Your Personal Information, We may choose to anonymize some of Your Personal Information such as name, address and email, but retain the records of Your activity. As the Data Controller, We will also pass this request along to the third parties with which We have a Data Processing Agreement and request that they honor Your right to be forgotten. We have no control over their performance of the request.

Exercising Your right to be forgotten is permanent and cannot be undone. If You later change Your mind, You would be required to create another account which could make it difficult to see a complete history of Your activity, impacting Your ability to receive some benefits.

You can also request access to Your Personal Information or request changes (e.g., correct errors or limit how Personal Information is processed). To request that Your Personal Information be forgotten or request access or changes to Your Personal Information, contact AAOS at privacy@aaos.org.

Canada Anti-Spam Law

AAOS complies with the Canada Anti-Spam Law. Non-AAOS members who provide Us a Canadian email address will not receive unauthorized Commercial Electronic Messages (as defined under the Canada Anti-Spam Law) unless these individuals have “opted-in” to receive Commercial Electronic Messages.

International Transfers to U.S.

If You are using Our Sites or otherwise communicating with AAOS from outside the United States, please be aware that Your Personal Information may be transferred to, stored, and processed in the United States. The data protection laws of the United States may not be as comprehensive as those in Your country. By using the AAOS Sites, You consent to Your Personal Information being transferred to the United States for the purposes described in this Privacy Policy.

Personal Information We Collect and How We Use it

Personal Information We Collect

Personal Information is information that, either alone or in combination with other information, identifies You. The types of Personal Information may include, but are not limited to:

  • General information (e.g., names, e-mail addresses, postal addresses, Internet protocol addresses, mobile/landline business/personal telephone numbers, and country of residence);
  • Professional information (e.g., educational and training background, medical licensure date and state(s), work setting, profession, principal subspecialty fields and certifications);
  • Financial information for sales of products or services (e.g., credit and debit card numbers, billing address);
  • Demographic information for diversity or accessibility purposes (e.g., racial or ethnic origin, age, sexual orientation, and disability data); and
  • If applicable, Orthopaedic In-Training Examination® (OITE) information, including practice test results.
  • AAOS mobile apps use geographic data to enhance user experience by providing direction and messaging for key events.

The product or service that You seek will determine the Personal Information collected.  You can manage Your account and contact information here. We need to collect and process this information in order to successfully meet Your needs and expectations, such as through delivery the products/services You purchased or requested, and other purposes listed below.

While observing the principle of Data Minimization, We will not collect or maintain Personal Information that is irrelevant to the scope and purpose of the services We provide to Our members, customers and visitors.

Tracking the Use of Our Sites

Like most modern Websites and applications, Our Sites use cookies and tracking tools that will recognize IP addresses, geographic location, digital device identifiers and browsers, which help Us analyze visitors’ practices and preferences. 

  • Registered Site User - When You create an account to become a registered user on Our Sites or choose to interact with Us in other ways, You will be invited to submit certain Personal Information, which We collect in order to fulfill Your expectations and anticipate Your needs.  Examples include applying for AAOS membership, registering for or attending an AAOS event, subscribing to AAOS publications, purchasing an AAOS product, submitting a manuscript, participating in online surveys, searching for a job, submitting questions or comments on Our Sites, or requesting information or materials.
  • Unregistered Site User - If You use Our Sites without becoming a registered user, You may anonymously browse the public areas of the Sites.  Only aggregate data, such as the number of hits per page, is collected and may be used for internal and marketing purposes.  No personally identifying information is obtained.

We comply with best practices developed by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) which are available on the FTC website.

How We Use/Process Personal Information

We process Your Personal Information as needed to legitimately provide Our products, services, websites, apps and their functionality to You (consistent with the definition of Legitimate Basis under GDPR), including but not limited to the following purposes:

  • My AAOS Records – To verify and update your Your current information.
  • Membership - Process, fulfill and follow up on membership applications; and invite You to join AAOS or renew Your membership.
  • Continuing Medical Education Credits - To allow You to claim CME credit with a certifying body, e.g. the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (ABOS).
  • Potential Conflicts of Interest – To populate your disclosure information in the AAOS Orthopaedic Disclosure Database when required for You to participate in AAOS activities. The required information may include certain activities or financial interests that You or a family member have that may be perceived as a potential conflict of interest with your AAOS activities.
  • Donations to AAOS Orthopaedic PAC – To document PAC donations in compliance with Federal Election Commission regulations, We will ask for information about Your citizenship status, Your employer, Your occupation, and financial information, if applicable.
  • Event Registration – To complete your registration for AAOS Annual Meeting, Courses and other Events; and compile registration and physician attendee lists, including the AAOS member's name and address, to exhibitors in advance and/or after of the Annual Meeting and Courses.
  • Annual Meeting Badges – To embed certain Personal Information in Annual Meeting badges (name, address, email address, telephone and practice focus) so that exhibitors may obtain registrant information through a lead retrieval system.
  • Purchases – To complete your purchase and delivery of AAOS products and services, including provide access to educational content, including CMEs, examinations/assessments, videos, journals and textbooks.
  • Electronic Marketing Campaigns - To notify You about new products/services, special offers and other related information from AAOS, Our partners and approved third parties.
  • Find an Orthopaedist – If you elect to participate in the Find an Orthopaedist directory, the public will have access to a limited amount of Your information (name, address, telephone number and Web address); and AAOS members will have access to additional Personal Information (email address, fax number, member classification and fellowship year).
  • AAOS Activities – In addition to Personal Information in the AAOS Orthopaedic Disclosure Program, You will be identified as a member or a participant in various AAOS activities in a committee roster format that is accessible by AAOS members.
  • Educational Submissions - Review Your manuscript, articles and abstract submissions.
  • Hotel Reservations - Send the minimum required information to hotels to secure Your housing for AAOS meetings and events and/or to conduct audits for hotel room block calculations.
  • Communications - Review and respond to Your emails or online requests, and communication through HNN, Advocacy Now, the Resident Newsletter, AAOS Now, and other communications.
  • OITE test results - In concert with the OITE Privacy Statement, Your identifying information and record(s) of use of in-training or practice materials, self-assessment exam collections, tests, and study tools, practice test results may be disclosed to your residency program director and a third-party to evaluate learning outcomes and improve the effectiveness of these products. Any disclosure of PII will be solely to your program director, ABOS or its agents or contractors for the purpose of evaluating and improving the effectiveness of AAOS’s self-assessment tools, test preparation materials, and study aids.
  • AAOS Apps - AAOS mobile apps use geographic data to enhance your experience by providing direction and messaging for key events.

Other examples of how Personal Information is used include:

  • Send surveys and process survey responses
  • Process a job application
  • Ensure Our Sites are relevant to Your needs
  • Present focused advertising that might interest You
  • Recommend AAOS content that suits You
  • Alert You when fresh content is posted or released

You can manage Your account, limit alerts or opt-out of some or all future communications. All e-mail communications contain an “unsubscribe” option to discontinue the communication at any time. When We contract with vendors to deliver emails to You on Our behalf, they are contractually prohibited from using Your Personal Information for any other purpose.

With Whom We May Share Personal Information

AAOS may share Personal Information with Our business partners in order to provide them an opportunity to offer products or services that may be of interest to You. AAOS also occasionally engages other companies to provide some of the limited services outlined above, as well as consulting services, data modeling, session monitoring and Website analytics, printing, Website and systems hosting, and data storage. We only provide those companies with access to Personal Information if required to deliver the requested services. These companies are prohibited from using that information for any other purpose.

A popular feature on some Websites is the ability to “sign in” or access content through Your existing social media account, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter.  While that is convenient, it requires the sharing of Your first name, last name, email address and metadata to confirm Your status as a registered user.

Disclosure to third parties — On occasion, AAOS may disclose Your Personal Information to a third party. Those circumstances include when:

  • authorized by You;
  • permitted under this Privacy Policy;
  • required by statue or regulation;
  • in the good-faith belief that such action is necessary to:
    • conform to legal requirements or comply with legal process served on the AAOS;
    • protect and defend the rights or property of AAOS;
    • protect the personal safety of AAOS personnel or members of the public in urgent circumstances;
    • enforce the AAOS’s Privacy Policy, Code of Conduct or Terms of Use.

In addition to the disclosures identified above, Your Personal Information may be incorporated into an association management software (AMS). AAOS may license data in its AMS to third parties under strict guidelines. The names and addresses of users in the AMS are made available only for communications that are germane to the practice of orthopaedic surgery or of interest to these users as consumers.

Children under 13 - We do not knowingly solicit information online from or market online to children under the age of 13. Any Personal Information that We access pertaining to a child under the age of 13 will promptly be erased from Our repositories, unless it was provided with explicit consent from that child’s Parent or Legal Guardian.

Information security - AAOS implements security measures to protect against unauthorized access to or unauthorized alteration, disclosure or destruction of Personal Information. We restrict access to Personal Information to only Our employees and business partners who may need to know that information in order to operate, develop or improve Our services. These individuals are bound by confidentiality obligations and may be subject to discipline, including termination and criminal prosecution, if they fail to meet these obligations.

How We Safeguard Personal Information

Site Security Features

TLS Technology and How You Benefit from It — AAOS has taken a number of steps to enhance the protection of Personal Information sent to or from AAOS over the Internet. We require that a secure session be established, using Transport Layer Security (TSL) technology. This is done any time You supply or access information in one of Our secure online areas.

User ID and Password — Many areas of the site require the use of a user ID and password as an additional security measure that helps protect Your Personal Information. This security measure allows AAOS to verify who You are, thereby allowing You access to Your account information and preventing unauthorized access. When You have finished using a secure area of AAOS’s Website, make sure You always click on the "Log Out" link which appears on every secure page. When You click on the "Log Out" link, You will be given the option to end Your secure session. No further secure transactions can be conducted without re-entering Your user ID and password. You should be aware that browser software often "caches" a page as You look at it, meaning that some pages are saved in Your computer's temporary memory. Therefore, You may find that clicking on Your "Back" button shows You a saved version of a previously viewed page. Caching in no way affects the security of Your confidential user ID or password.

No Guarantee — Unfortunately, no data transmission over the Internet can be guaranteed to be 100% secure. Because there are several entities involved in the flow of data over the Internet, despite Our efforts, AAOS cannot guarantee or warrant the security of any information You transmit to Us, or to or from Our online products or services. Email messages sent to or from a Website may not be secure. Confidential information should not be sent by email or if You do so, the confidential content should be attached to the email message on an encrypted file or at least protected by a strong password which You will convey to Us via an alternative communication channel (not the same email account). Site visitors sending email accept the risk that a third party may intercept email messages. If You have questions about this Privacy Policy, please contact Us at privacy@aaos.org

Linking to Other Internet Sites

You should be aware that other Internet sites that link to Our sites or to an AAOS email may contain privacy provisions that differ from these. We don’t control those sites or the information they collect about You. To ensure Your privacy is protected, We recommend that You review the privacy statements of other Internet sites You visit.

How Long Do We Store Your Personal Information

We keep Your Personal Information only so long as We need it to provide the service You've requested of Us (including membership, meeting registration and attendance, publication subscription, etc.), to fulfill the purposes described in this policy, or to comply with legal requirements. AAOS vendors, as described in this policy, may have different retention periods for Your Personal Information, which You should assess directly with the applicable vendor.

How We Protect Your Personal Information

We have appropriate (technical, process and human) security measures in place to prevent Personal Information from being accidentally lost or used or accessed in an unauthorized/ unlawful way. We limit access to Your Personal Information to those who have a genuine business need to do so. Those processing Your Personal Information will do so only in an authorized manner and are subject to a duty of confidentiality.

We also have procedures in place to detect and address any suspected data security breach. We will notify You and any applicable governmental entity of a suspected data security breach where We are legally required to do so.

How You Can Access and Change Personal Information

Our commitment to Your privacy includes multiple ways You reach Us and inquire about the Personal Information in Our possession. If You have questions, comments, or complaints concerning Our privacy practices or if You wish to change, access, or remove Your Personal Information, please contact Us as indicated below.  We will attempt, where practical, to respond to Your requests and to provide You with additional privacy related information.

Contact Us if You would like to:

  • See and receive the Personal Information We have about You, if any;
  • Correct or update Your Personal Information;
  • Ask Us to stop using or sharing Your Personal Information;
  • Ask Us to delete parts or all of Your Personal Information; and/or
  • Opt out of some or all future communications from Us.

Contact the AAOS Customer Service Center by phone number at (800) 626-6726 or (847) 823-7186 (outside of the US); or email at privacy@aaos.org; or mail at 9400 W. Higgins Road, Rosemont, IL 60018. The AAOS Customer Service Center is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Central time).

To opt out of future emails and newsletters, You can also access Your account Opt In/Opt Out at https://ebus.aaos.org/MyAccount/OptInOut.aspx

Please note that opting out from some services or asking for some of Your Personal Information to be erased (depending on which Personal Information), may impair AAOS’s inability to proceed with the delivery of one or more of its Services to You. Additionally, updates or corrections to certain types of Personal Information (e.g., physician licensure, medical education or training, etc.) will require independent verification prior to implementation of any permanent change to Our files.

AAOS may refuse to erase some Personal Information if and when AAOS is required to retain the Personal Information by law or contractual obligations.

Revised March, 2021