HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius Addresses Nation’s Medical Students at AMSA’s 62nd Annual Convention; 2011-2012 PharmFree Scorecard to Be Released on March 8

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The Honorable Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius will address hundreds of future physicians on March 9. On March 8, AMSA will release the 2011-2012 AMSA PharmFree Scorecard, an evaluation of conflict-of-interest policies at all U.S. medical colleges and colleges of osteopathic medicine.

“We are honored to welcome Secretary Sebelius,” says Danielle Salovich, AMSA national president. “She has led ambitious efforts to improve America’s health."

The Honorable Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius will address hundreds of future physicians at the American Medical Student Association’s Annual Convention & Exposition, March 8-11, at the Hyatt Regency Houston in Houston, Texas.

“We are honored to welcome Secretary Sebelius,” says Danielle Salovich, AMSA national president. “Since taking office, she has led ambitious efforts to improve America’s health and enhance the delivery of human services to some of the nation’s most vulnerable populations. Sebelius will address the social determinants of health and health inequality. In an era where the health of millions is threatened by poverty and lack of health insurance, this issue couldn’t be more important to our society and our profession.”

The other keynote speakers include Dr. Lucian Leape, adjunct professor of health policy at the Harvard School of Public Health and a health policy analyst whose groundbreaking research has focused on patient safety and quality of care, Dr. Arthur Chen, who was featured in Time Magazine’s 2011 Person of the Year cover story and Dr. David Ansell, a physician and nationally renowned health activist committed to closing the “death gap” that causes Americans to die younger than those of most other developed nations. Ansell wrote COUNTY: Life, Death and Politics at Chicago’s Public Hospital, a memoir about the years he spent working at Cook County Hospital.

AMSA will launch its 2011-2012 PharmFree Scorecard (http://www.amsascorecard.org/) on Thursday, March 8. The PharmFree Scorecard, now in its fifth year, offers a comprehensive national overview of conflict-of-interest policies as well as an in-depth, school-by-school analysis in 11 areas, including gifts and meals from industry to doctors, paid promotional speaking for industry, acceptance of free drug samples, interaction with sales representatives and industry-funded education.

More than 60 programming sessions are planned in five focus areas, including professionalism, wellness and society, international health, public health, career and professional development and advocacy. Hot topics include: social media in medical education, the state of global HIV/AIDS, the obesity epidemic and sexual health in prisons.

AMSA members will debate controversial issues in the House of Delegates including whether the organization should support federal guidelines requiring all insurance plans to cover contraceptives.

Special events include the 5th Anniversary Women Leaders in Medicine Awards Reception honoring seven women for their passion and commitment to social justice, advancing women and mentoring young leaders in medicine.

You may access the entire convention program online: http://www.amsa.org/AMSA/Homepage/Events/Convention/Program.aspx.

Follow #amsaconv12 on Twitter (https://twitter.com/#!/AMSANational) for up-to-the-minute updates and event happenings.

Media Information
Members of the media are welcome to attend AMSA convention events. Advanced media registration is available online: http://www.amsa.org/AMSA/Homepage/Events/Convention/Media.aspx. For more information, contact Kim Cunningham, AMSA director of public relations, at (781) 223-4042 or pr(at)amsa(dot)org.

About the American Medical Student Association
AMSA is the oldest and largest independent association of physicians-in-training in the United States. Founded in 1950, AMSA is a student-governed, nonprofit organization committed to representing the concerns of physicians-in-training. To learn more about AMSA, our strategic priorities, or joining the organization, please visit us online at http://www.amsa.org.

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