Published: December 6, 2018

2017-2018 Committee Highlights

Committees are the lifeblood of the AAO-HNS/F and a great way for members to contribute meaningfully to the organization and the specialty.

Committees are the lifeblood of the AAO-HNS/F and a great way for members to contribute meaningfully to the organization and the specialty. At the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience in Atlanta, Georgia, Academy and Foundation committees met and discussed achievements during the past year and planned for 2019. The following pages contain brief summaries of actions taken by highlighted committees over the 2017-2018 committee term.

To view a list of current committee members, please visit

To join a committee, visit and fill out an application before the January 1st, 2019, deadline.

Academy Committees

Airway and Swallowing Committee
Michael J. Pitman, MD, Chair

  • The committee received a 2018 Committee of Excellence Award.
  • The committee sponsored five Panel Presentations at this year’s Annual Meeting.
  • Committee members helped create expert dysphagia content for the AAO-HNS website.
  • The committee has nearly finished a group effort to review the literature to compare outcomes and complications of the treatment of Zenker’s Diverticulum against a rigid technique (otolaryngology preferred) compared to a flexible technique (GI preferred).
  • Committee members provided professional insight to Medtronic, with the goal of improving the Medtronic Laser Flex tube or having the Lasershield tube restored.
  • The committee identified improving tracheotomy care and decreasing tracheotomy complications as an initiative. In addition to the committee’s Panel Presentation on this topic, it is developing an app for patients, families, and nurses, focusing on high-yield care to prevent and treat emergencies.

Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology Committee
Maria C. Veling, MD, Chair

The Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology Committee sponsored three Panel Presentations at the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:

  • Allergy: It’s Not Just the Nose!
  • Blow-by-Blow: Asthma Diagnosis and Treatment in the Otolaryngologist’s Office
  • Panel on the International Consensus Statement on Allergy and Rhinology: Allergic Rhinitis American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy (AAOA) – Specialty Society (Part I and II)

Complementary/Integrative Medicine Committee
Chau T. Nguyen, MD, Chair

The Complementary/Integrative Medicine Committee sponsored two Panel Presentations at the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:

  • Combating Burnout: Lessons Learned from Integrative Medicine (Part I and II)
  • Probiotics for Rhinosinusitis: Examining the Evidence

Diversity and Inclusion Committee
Valerie Flanary, MD

  1. In March, the DIC Committee sponsored a panel entitled “The Myths of Meritocracy”. This panel was moderated by Immediate past Chair, Valerie Flanary.  Panelists included Carol Bradford, Joseph Kerschner and Harold Pillsbury. Issues surrounding inequities in merit-based promotion and leadership opportunities were discussed.
  2. A second Cultural Competency survey was sent out to the Academy membership. Based on results, the DIC is working with the General Otolaryngology Educational Committee to create cultural competency educational content.
  3. Grants: Diversity Endowment URM Away Rotation Grant recipients (Ebone Evans, MD and Maria Espinosa, MD) and The Harry Barnes Travel Grant recipient (Tanisha Hutchinson, MD)
  4. A DIC social event was held in Atlanta during the AAO-HNS Annual Meeting. Turnout was high and included several members of AAOHNS leadership.
  5. The DIC participated with the Education Committee in developing guidelines and criteria for creation of unbiased educational content provided by the AAO-HNS though its various educational outlets.
  6. The DIC supported multiple diversity and LGBTQ related programs presented at the Annual Meeting.

Endocrine Surgery Committee
David L. Steward, MD, Chair

The highlights of the Endocrine Surgery Committee this past year are:

  • Another successful Ultrasound Course: Thyroid and Parathyroid Ultrasound Skills-Oriented that attracted 65 attendees.
  • Through the work of the committee the past few years on the development of patient materials, a significant amount of material was able to be used to launch the thyroid section of the new website.
  • Close to 20 education sessions were presented at the Annual Meeting on endocrine topics.

Equilibrium Committee
Yuri Agrawal, MD, Chair

The Committee submitted four Panel Presentations, three of which were accepted for the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:

  • Vestibular Testing: What’s warranted, What’s wasteful 2018
  • Vestibular PT: Evidence for Efficacy and New Technologies
  • Vestibular Migraine’s: 2018 Management Update

Geriatrics Otolaryngology Committee
Allan M. Rubin, MD, PhD, Chair

  • Supported the following AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience Expert Series and Panel Presentations:
    • Hearing Loss in Older Adults: Public Health Imperative
    • Pearls of Dysphagia Management in the Older Patient
    • Pretreatment Screening of Elderly Head and Neck Cancer Patients
    • Surgical Management of Thyroid Disease and Cancer in the Geriatric Population, Part I and II
  • Reviewed and provided feedback on a draft survey to be distributed to the AAO-HNS members titled, Head and Neck Surgeon’s Perception Regarding Palliative Care.

Hearing Committee
Richard K. Gurgel, MD, Chair

  • The Committee sponsored five Panel Presentations at the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:
    • Hearing Loss in Older Adults: A Public Health Imperative (co-endorsed by the Geriatric Otology Committee)
    • Leading Edge: The Latest in Hearing Research
    • Over-the-Counter Hearing Care: Updates, Innovations and its Impact on Your Practice
    • Policy and Practice: How Changing Policy Affects Hearing and Healthcare Delivery Part I & II
    • The Spectrum of Implantable Hearing Devices: Indications and Outcomes Part I & II (co-endorsed by the Implantable Hearing Device Committee)
  • The Committee is represented on the AAO-HNSF Clinical Consensus Statement: Balloon Dilation of the Eustachian Tube and the AAO-HNSF Clinical Practice Guideline: Meniere’s Disease.
  • Committee members contributed to the writing of the journal article, “Minimum reporting standards for cochlear implants
  • The Committee reviewed and provided comments on:
    • For the 3P Workgroup
      • UHC Medical Policy: Hearing Aids and Devices including wearable, bone-anchored and semi-implantable
      • BCBSA Clinical Consultation on Balloon Dilation of the Eustachian Tube
      • Anthem Policy on Balloon Dilation of the Eustachian Tube
      • UHC Medical Policy: Cochlear Implant
      • MAXUM and Middle Ear Implants Policy
    • CNS Vestibular Schwannoma Clinical Practice Guideline
    • Patient information on hyperacusis
    • “Dementia Screening: A Role for Audiologists” and issues of scope of practice for audiologists
    • Neurotology Clinical Advisory Committee Measures
  • Committee members wrote and published an article in the Bulletin and on AAO-HNS social media outlets for Better Hearing and Speech Month 

History and Archives Committee
Tulio A. Valdez, MD, Chair

Points of Action for Coming Year:

  • In the coming year, the History and Archives committee will focus efforts on developing articles for submissions to the White Journal and Bulletin on topics relative to the History of Otolaryngology.
  • The Committee discussed ways to further promote abstract submissions for the Historical Forum and a communication plan to publicize the event to be held at the 2019 Annual Meeting.
  • The Committee will explore the process and cost to digitize the John Q. Adams Museum historical archives and make accessible on the Academy’s website.

Infectious Disease Committee
Ken Kazahaya, MD, Chair

  • In collaboration with the PSQI Committee, the Infectious Disease committee sponsored the following Panel Presentation at the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:
    • Office Equipment Disinfection and Storage: Sound Evidence or Alternative Facts? Committee members Marlene L. Durand, MD, Nathan J. Gonik, MD, and Pamela C. Roehm, MD, PhD, participated on the panel.
  • In collaboration with the Complementary/Integrative Medicine Committee, the Infectious Disease committee sponsored the following Panel Presentation at the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:
    • Probiotics for Rhinosinusitis: Examining the Evidence. Committee member Li-Xing Man, MD, MPA, participated on the panel.
  • The Infectious Disease Committee developed and submitted a Clinical Consensus Statement (CCS) Information and Topic Form for Cytomegalovirus Screening and Testing, which the Guideline Task Force (GTF) voted to accept. Per the recommendation of the GTF, Cytomegalovirus Screening and Testing will be combined with Evaluation of Congenital Hearing Loss into one Clinical Practice Guideline (CPG): Pediatric Hearing Loss. Work is scheduled to begin in mid- to late 2020.

Media and Public Relations Committee
Philip G. Chen, MD, Chair

Collaborated with AAO-HNS committees in coordinating and developing public outreach activities, information, and materials for the following health observances:

  • Kids ENT Health Month (February)
  • World Hearing Day (March 3)
  • Sleep Awareness Week (March 11-17)
  • World Voice Day (April 16)
  • Oral, Head and Neck Cancer Awareness Month (April)
  • Better Hearing & Speech Month (May)

Microvascular Committee
Keith A. Casper, MD, Chair

  • Presented two Panel Presentations at the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience: “Management of the Difficult Wound” and “Reconstructive Showdown: 2018.”
  • Continued development of a committee-sponsored e-book for residents on microvascular surgery.
  • Forthcoming in Head & Neck journal: publication of a multi-institutional, committee-sponsored hypopharynx study on surgical salvage after chemoradiation.
  • Continued work on a randomized controlled trial on utility of a patient free flap educational handout (estimated completion of patient enrollment in January 2019).
  • Goals for the upcoming year include:
    • Begin work on a multi-institutional, randomized controlled trial on antibiotic use in free flap surgery.
    • Submit 3-5 panel presentations for consideration at the AAO-HNSF 2019 Annual Meeting.
    • Explore potential for microvascular quality improvement project.
    • Explore study or statement on Enhanced Recovery application to microvascular cases.

Otolaryngology Veterans Affairs Committee
Edward M. Weaver, MD, Chair

  • Preparing a position statement for consideration on Scope and Instrument Cleaning—community standard.
  • Submitted Panel Presentation proposals for the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience on Training and Career Opportunities in the VA, Academic ENTs in the VA, and Scientific Breakthroughs at the VA.
  • Working on Panel Presentation proposals related to Community Care, Access and Wait Times, Research Opportunities at the VA, Geriatric, PTSD, Diversity, Sleep Disorders, and Hearing Loss.
  • Preparing educational materials targeted to VA Chiefs regarding SPARQ data and Telemedicine in the VA.

Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Committee
Emily F. Boss, MD, MPH, Co-Chair; C.W. David Chang, MD, Co-Chair

  • PSQI received a 2018 Committee of Excellence Award.
  • Dr. Chang provided information and participated in a meeting with James Denneny, MD, EVP/CEO and Gavin Setzen, MD, President and The Joint Commission regarding in-office equipment sterilization, which led to positive resolution of several key concerning issues.
  • PSQI co-sponsored three Panel Presentations at this year’s Annual Meeting.
  • PSQI instituted the “Quality Corner” bimonthly column for the Bulletin.
  • The Committee’s nomination of Gordon Sun, MD, to a CMS Technical Expert Panel (TEP), which will advise CMS on Improvement Activities for the Merit-based Incentive Payment System, was approved by the Board.
  • Committee members contributed to the first installment of the PSQI tutorial series for the Academy’s journal.
  • Committee members self-nominated to participate in seven workgroups around key PSQI areas. The workgroups have set goals for projects/products, which were further refined during the Annual Meeting in Atlanta.
  • Committee members reviewed Choosing Wisely initiatives from other specialties.

Trauma Committee
Neal D. Futran, MD, DMD, Chair

  • Trauma Committee and Society of Military Otolaryngologists’ Trauma Symposium presented “Modern Management of H&N Trauma: Computer Aided Applications in Maxillofacial Reconstruction” on October 6 at the Annual Meeting. Bradley Strong, MD, Professor and Vice-Chairman at University of California, Davis, spoke on presurgical planning, navigation and intra-operative imaging during maxillofacial reconstruction. David Powers, MD, DMD, Associate Professor and Director, Duke Craniomaxillofacial Trauma Program, addressed intra-operative models, guides, and Patient Specific Implants used in trauma reconstruction. Tanisha L. Hammill, DoD Hearing Center for Excellence, presented surgical research and technology use in medicine.
  • Trauma Symposium approved for CME, maximum 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s).
  • Three Panel Presentations delivered at the Annual Meeting: “Once Bitten Twice Shy: Contemporary Management of Bites to the Face, Head, and Neck,” “Practical Strategies for Evaluation and Management of Facial Nerve Injuries,” and “Application of Technologic Advances in Facial Reproduction.”

Voice Committee
VyVy N. Young, MD, Chair

  • Developed multimedia AAO-HNS/F 2018 World Voice Day, “Cherish Your Voice” campaign with thousands of views received.
  • Introduced, the patient focused otolaryngology website with Voice conditions section and VyVy Young, MD section video.
  • Laser safe ETT has been an issue and members are seeking feedback through Academy channels about usage of Laser safe ETT.
  • Billing and coding for bilateral awake vocal fold injection, bilateral thyroplasty, and denial of 31574 have been the focus of 2018 and 2019 ongoing activities.

Annual Meeting                                                                                               

Annual Meeting Program Advisory Committee
Mark K. Wax, MD, Chair

The Annual Meeting Program Advisory Committee reinvented the education program by introducing two new program formats and rebranding two traditional types:

  • Panel Presentations. Previously named “Miniseminars,” these one-hour discussion sessions were presented by panelists involving interactive, in-depth, state-of-the-art presentations.
  • Expert Series. Formerly known as “Instruction Courses,” Expert Series are one-hour sessions led by recognized experts on current diagnostic approaches, therapeutic approaches, and practice management topics.
  • Flash Talks. These presentations featured TED-style presentations followed by a moderator-driven discussion of case management studies that sparked audience participation.
  • Rapid Poster Presentations. This presentation format showcased the highest-ranked poster submissions in each sub-specialty, giving the selected poster presenters the opportunity to provide an oral presentation consisting of five slides highlighting and describing the major influence of their research. The presentations took place during the lunch hour in the Poster hall.

Education Committees                                                                         

Education Steering Committee
Richard V. Smith, MD, Coordinator for Education 

  • Relaunched online learning platform.
  • Member+ Subscription Campaign – 2,495 subscribers.
  • HSC+ enhancements for the 2018-19 academic year.
  • Developed a new Education Guideline on Creating Unbiased Education Content
  • New resident education resources, with AcademyU® resources paired with the ACGME Milestones for Otolaryngology.
  • International Outreach Efforts: PMP Spanish Translation Pilot Project with the Pan-American residents and fellows.
  • OTOSource, an online comprehensive curriculum launched to support both residents and practicing otolaryngologists in their pursuit of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery education. The open source site has launched with additional content under development. The enormous amount of collaboration, dedication, and leadership between the Foundation, Education Committees, authors, Task Force and Work Group, and the subspecialty societies is a huge credit to our specialty: COCLIA, 4th edition has been expanded to include greater clinical depth and enhanced learning with new questions, updated references, and images—plus a new Business of Medicine unit. Free tool:
  • AcademyQ – Set 2018 released with 350+ questions developed through the Item Writing Group.

Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Education Committee
Scott B. Roofe, MD, Chair

  • It authored the online course titled, “Diagnosis and Surgical Management of Nasal Valve Problems.”
  • A gap team was formed to develop a new eCourse on the “Care of the Transgender Patient.”
  • The Home Study Course section on Plastic and Reconstructive Problems released in April 2018.

General Otolaryngology Education Committee
Stacey L. Ishman, MD, MPH, Chair

  • The General Otolaryngology Education Committee provided leadership to the 8th ENT for the PA-C conference held in Scottsdale, Arizona.
  • It developed a Certification/Recertification Review Course for the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience.
  • It developed modules for OTOSource and authored several online courses, including “Upper Airway Stimulation for the treatment of OSA”; “Palate Surgery for Adult OSA”; “Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Primer”; and “Clinical Practice Guidelines for Pediatric Polysymnography.”
  • The Home Study Course section on Trauma and Critical Care published in February 2018.

Head and Neck Surgery Education Committee
David M. Cognetti, MD, Chair

  • Along with other Education committees, the Head and Neck Surgery Education Committee developed a Certification/Recertification Review Course for the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience.
  • It developed modules for OTOSource and authored the online course titled “Functional Consequences of Chemo Radiation Therapy.”
  • AAO-HNSF and AHNS TNM Staging of Head and Neck Cancer and Neck Dissection Classification: Fifth Edition (eBook).
  • A new Home Study Course section on “Neoplastic and Inflammatory Diseases of the Head and Neck” is in development.

Laryngology and Bronchoesophagology Education Committee
Thomas L. Carroll, MD, Chair

  • The Laryngology and Bronchoesophagology Education Committee developed modules for OTOSource.
  • It authored the online course titled “Evidence-Based Diagnosis and Treatment of Dysphonia.”
  • A new Home Study Course section on Laryngology, Voice Disorders, and Bronchoesophagology published in November 2018.

Otology and Neurotology Education Committee
Marc L. Bennett, MD, Chair

  • The Otology and Neurotology Education Committee developed a Certification/Recertification Review Course for the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience.
  • It developed modules for OTOSource and authored several online courses, including “Facial Paralysis”; “Evaluation and Management of Vestibular Migraine”; “Expanding Knowledge and Improving Competence in Tympanoplasty Surgery: Expert Tips and Techniques”; “Bell’s Palsy”; “Adult with Pulsatile Tinnitus”; “Adult with Otalgia Self-Assessment”; and “Child with a Draining Ear.”
  • A Home Study Course section on Otology and Neurotology is in development.

Pediatric Otolaryngology Education Committee
Jeffrey Simons, MD, Chair

  • The Pediatric Otolaryngology Education Committee developed a Certification/Recertification Review Course for the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience.
  • It developed modules for OTOSource and authored several online courses, including “Child with Snoring”; “Controversies in the Management of Infant and Childhood Ankyloglossia”; “Vascular Anomalies”; and “Tonsillectomy Clinical Practice Guideline.”

Practice Management Education Committee
Brendan C. Stack, MD, FACE, Chair

  • The Practice Management Education Committee received a 2018 Committee Excellence Award.
  • The committee authored several online courses, including “Practicing Medicine in a Legally Informed Way.”
  • A Home Study Course section on Practice Management is in development.

Rhinology and Allergy Education Committee
Stacey T. Gray, MD, Chair

  • The Rhinology and Allergy Education Committee developed a Certification/Recertification Review Course for the AAO-HSNF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience.
  • The committee authored several online courses, including “Evidence Based Review of Techniques in Endoscopic Dacryocystorhinostomy”; “Chronic Rhinosinusitis with Nasal Polyps in Adult Patient”; “Adult with Non-Allergic Rhinitis”; “Adult Rhinosinusitis”; “Office based Procedures”; and “Steroid-eluting Stents in Patients with Chronic Sinusitis.”
  • This group published a Home Study Course section on Rhinology and Allergic Disorders.

Simulation Education Committee
Ellen S. Deutsch, MD, Chair

  • The committee hosted the third annual Simulation Reception and Showcase during the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience, highlighting nearly 30 innovative and novel otolaryngology simulation projects developed by Academy members.
  • Offered a sold-out Simulation Experience at Emory Center for Experiential Learning, allowing attendees to experience the latest hands-on simulation devices.
  • Hosted the second SIM Tank event, where finalists presented their simulation projects to a panel of expert judges and a live audience.
  • Concluded the SimTube study and is in the process of analyzing the data.


Development Committee
Lee Eisenberg, MD, MPH, Chair and Development Coordinator

  • Increased participation of members of the Board of Directors who are active Millennium Society donors to 90%.
  • Added three new Millennium Society Lifetime Donors ($30,000 cumulative giving) and seven new Millennium Society Sustainer donors ($5,000 gift).

Humanitarian Efforts Committee
Mark E. Zafereo Jr., MD, Chair

  • AAO-HNSF Otolaryngology United for Global Patient Care was the official outreach effort of the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting. Medical supplies, equipment, and textbooks were collected from attendees at the Atlanta meeting, and continue to be collected in partnership with MedShare, a 501(c)3 humanitarian aid organization, until December 31.
  • Humanitarian Efforts Forum featured keynote by Johan Fagan, MD, and global panel presentations on Ethical Dilemmas, Portable Technology Platforms/Funding Opportunities.
  • Recognition of humanitarian awardees for their work on behalf of underserved populations domestically and internationally:
    • Susan R. Cordes, MD, AAO-HNS Distinguished Award for Humanitarian Service
    • Mark G. Shrime, MDMPH, Arnold P. Gold Foundation Humanism in Medicine Award
    • Tania Sih, MD, PhD, Nikhil J. Bhatt, MD Public Service Award
    • Mohan Kameswaran, MD, Nikhil J. Bhatt, MD Humanitarian Award
  • Twenty-six residents and fellows-in-training were awarded Humanitarian Travel Grants for service in resource-limited countries.

Outcomes, Research and Evidence-Based Medicine Committee
Jennifer Shin, MD, Co-Chair; Vikas Mehta, MD, Co-Chair

  • The Committee sponsored eight Panel Presentations at the 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience:
    • Recent Publications that Could Change Your Practice: Pediatric and General Otolaryngology
    • Are You Up-to-Date? Key Otolaryngology Systematic Reviews: Part I & II
    • Demystifying Opioids in Otolaryngology: Facts, Gaps, Patterns, and Alternatives for Pain Control in Common Surgical Procedures
    • Kids Today: Rapid Review of Guidelines and Consensus Statements
    • Controversies in Parotid Surgery: Is There Evidence?: Parts I & II
    • Apps in Otolaryngology: Evolving Regulation, Mobile Diagnostics, Patient Interfaces and Clinic Efficiency: Parts I & II
    • Evidence-Based Management of Meniere’s Disease and Vestibular Migraine: Parts I & II
    • Intraoperative Cranial Nerve Monitoring in Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery: Part I & II
  • The Committee published articles for the Evidence-Based Medicine in Otolaryngology educational journal series:
    • Valuing Health Outcomes
    • Practical Guidelines for Cost-Effective Analyses in Clinical Medicine
    • Outcomes Associated with Vocal Fold Motion Impairment and Swallowing Dysfunction after Pediatric Cardiothoracic Surgery: A Systematic Review
  • The Committee has been working on the following MarketScan Database Projects:
    • Evaluation of outcomes and related cost of NCCN-guideline adherent vs. nonadherent management of oral cavity carcinoma.
    • Narcotics prescribing patterns after otolaryngology surgical procedures (peds and adult).
    • Healthcare utilization and prescribing patterns for adult eustachian tube dysfunction.

Panamerican Committee
Hernan Goldsztein, MD, Chair

  • Developed and administered ENTConnect community for Pan-Americans to provide a platform for regional exchange, collaboration, and sharing of best practices.
  • Committee members participated in the Spanish translation and editorial overview of three AcademyU courses and five Clinical Practice Guidelines:
    • Adult Rhinosinusitis
    • Adult with Pulsatile Tinnitus
    • Workup and Management of a Patient with HPV Positive Oropharyngeal Cancer
    • One Patient handout for Hoarseness (Dysphonia)
    • Four Patient handouts for Evaluation of the Neck Mass in Adults

Reg-ent SM Committee

James C. Denneny III, MD, Chair

  • The Reg-ent Committee’s work resulted in achieving Qualified Registry and Qualified Clinical Data Registry designations with CMS for 2016, 2017, and 2018. Since the Reg-ent registry is in good standing with CMS, it was awarded expedited CMS review for 2019.
  • Contracts established with 439 private practices and 25 academic/health systems.
  • Over 2,000 clinicians are contributing data.
  • Over 4 million unique patients and approximately 9.5 million patient visits.
  • The group supported reporting MIPS 2017 for over 700 clinicians.
  • It coordinated significant work on integrating practices with cloud-based vendors including Epic, Greenway, Allscripts, and eClinicalWorks.
  • The committee supported the launch of the new 2018 Reg-ent registry technology platform and practice dashboard.
  • The committee continued exploration of private payer incentive programs through Reg-ent with FIGmd.
  • Approved Epic solution as of August 2018 with pilot testing under way.
  • The committee worked to re-engage academic medical centers now that an Epic integration solution is available and hosted a breakfast for the Chairs of all of the Otolaryngology Head and Neck Surgery Programs at the 2018 AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting and OTO Experience.
  • The group held the first Reg-ent User Group Conference at the 2018 AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting and OTO Experience.
  • The group’s data validation ensured measures data error rates below CMS required 3% for MIPS 2017 and enhanced data validation audits in 2018 to ensure accurate and reliable data.
  • The group signed on to policy and advocacy letters sponsored by the Physician Clinical Data Registry Coalition regarding information blocking and supporting QCDR participation as meeting the criteria of the Promoting Interoperability requirements of MIPS.
  • Clinical Advisory Committees (CACs)
    The CACs convened in Atlanta to provide feedback to the REC on the following:
    • Measures utilizing validated, disease-specific patient-reported outcome measures.
    • Measures to address gaps in care (underuse, overuse, abuse) for which there is significant room for improvement by otolaryngologists.
    • Benchmarks for processes or interventions for which national benchmarks would be useful.
    • Patient outreach opportunities to collect difficult to obtain information (e.g., post-tonsillectomy hemorrhage).

Standing Committees

Audit Committee
Steven Cheung, MD, Chair

  • The audit of the consolidated financial statements for the year ended June 30, 2018 (FY18) was completed in September and a “clean opinion” was provided by the independent audit firm.
  • The audited financial statements and annual tax returns are available to anyone requesting access. Send any requests to Carrie Hanlon (

Ethics Committee
Susan D. McCammon, MD, Chair

  • Oversight: Reviewed and unanimously recommended two revisions to the Code for Interaction with Companies involving key leaders’ definition and data registries to the EC, which the BOD subsequently approved on October 6. A report will appear in an upcoming Bulletin.
  • Scientific Program: Presented Genetic Testing 101 for the Otolaryngologist: Who, Why, and When to Test (with Head and Neck Surgery Education and Pediatric Otolaryngology Education Committees); and Urgent Evaluation of the Professional Voice. Committee members also participated in sessions on concurrent surgery, infection control, and ethical challenges in global health delivery.
  • Publications: Three Ethics in Practice manuscripts by Committee members were accepted by Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, with one under review.
  • Informational Report: Summary report to date on the Industry Relations Task Force presented by R. Peter Manes, MD, followed by discussion during the Committee meeting in Atlanta.

Finance & Investment Subcommittee of the EC (FISC)
Scott Stringer, MD, Secretary-Treasurer

  • The FISC worked with staff to develop a balanced FY19 budget (July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019), which was approved by the BODs in April 2018.
  • On a quarterly basis, the FISC met to review financial statements, forecasts, and budget to actual variances and reviewed the annual audit and report of the Audit Committee.
  • In October, the FISC met with AAO-HNS/F’s professional investment advisors to review with them performance results for the managed investment portfolio, which was a positive return of approximately 5% for the fiscal year.
  • In December 2017, the FISC authorized half of the debt incurred to purchase the headquarters building in 2008 be paid off and the remaining debt be refinanced for a period of 15 years.

Board of Governors (BOG) Committees

Sanjay Parikh, MD, Chair

With the leadership and oversight of its Executive Committee, the following are highlights of BOG activities in 2017-18:

BOG broad accomplishments
Advocated for members in both state and federal legislative forums:

  • Developed toolkits to assist members with payer relations and reimbursement
  • Strengthened diversity within BOG leadership with engagement of Women-in-Otolaryngology, Young Physician’s Section, Section for Residents and Fellows-in-Training, and Diversity and Inclusion Committee.
  • Enhanced social media presence to appeal to young members.

 AAO-HNS/F 2018 Leadership Forum & BOG Spring Meeting

  • This year’s Leadership Forum was a successful meeting with over 200 attendees. The three-day event included the following BOG programming:
    • State OTO Society Roundtable
    • General Assembly with AAO-HNS presidential candidate speeches
    • Keynote speaker: Julius W. Hobson, Jr., Senior Policy Advisor, Polsinelli PC
    • Federal and state legislative advocacy updates
    • Socioeconomic updates including coding and payer relations
    • “Insider” legislative, regulatory, and political updates
    • Unified content from AAO-HNS/F groups: Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Section for Residents and Fellows-in-Training, Women-in-Otolaryngology, and Young Physician’s Section.

Save the Date for the AO-HNS/F 2019 Leadership Forum & BOG Spring Meeting, April 26-28, Alexandria, VA.

2018 BOG Awards

  • The Northwest Academy of Otolaryngology/Head & Neck Surgery (NWAO) was awarded the Model Society Award.
  • Mark E. Zafereo, Jr., MD, was awarded the BOG Practitioner Excellence Award.
  • Neha Parikh, MD, and Soham Roy, MD, were awarded the BOG Chair Awards.

2018 BOG General Assembly

  • At the BOG General Assembly meeting, held in conjunction with the AAO-HNSF 2018 Annual Meeting & OTO Experience in Atlanta on October 6th, Spencer Payne, MD, was elected BOG Chair-Elect and Troy Woodard, MD, was elected BOG Member-at-Large. Ken Yanagisawa, MD, assumed the role of BOG Chair, and Sanjay R. Parikh, MD, became Immediate Past Chair.

BOG Committee Leadership

  • BOG Governance & Society Engagement: Stephen Payne, MD, Chair
  • BOG Legislative Affairs Committee: Susan R. Cordes, MD, Chair
  • BOG Socioeconomic & Grassroots (SEGR) Committee: Lance Manning, MD, Chair

BOG Toolkit Resources
Advocacy page:
‘BOG Toolkits and Resources’ drop down at the bottom of the page under ‘Additional Information.’

Payer page:
‘Practice Management’ à ‘Reimbursement’ à ‘Private Payer Advocacy’ à ‘Guidance for Addressing Private Payer Denials’ drop down at the bottom of the page under ‘Additional Information.’

Practice Management Resources:
‘Practice Management’ à ‘Resources’

Section for Residents and Fellows-in-Training (SRF)

  • The SRF sponsored 4 seminars at the AAO-HNS/F 2018 annual meeting and OTO Experience, covering topics important to trainees such as burnout and physician wellness, patient safety, diversity in otolaryngology, and, of course, free flaps! We also sponsored a panel at the BOG spring leadership meeting addressing conflict in the workplace.
  • The SRF General Assembly meeting at the AAO-HSN/F 2018 Annual Meeting and OTO Experience was well-attended by trainees. In addition to learning about the benefits of academy membership, attendees learned to manage stress and build resilience with Sian Cotton, PhD.
  • The SRF continued to provide resident representation on clinical practice guideline panels, with residents participating on at least 3 new guidelines this year.
  • Members of the SRF went with other leaders of the academy to Capitol Hill and met with legislators, addressing issues relevant our specialty and advocating on behalf of otolaryngologists.
  • The SRF annual survey used validated questions to assess emotional intelligence in otolaryngology residents.
  • SRF leadership worked with the international committee to welcome international attendees to the AAO-HNS/F 2018 annual meeting, including hosting a welcome brunch for international young physicians and making podcasts to facilitate their visit.
  • SRF leaders continued to focus on grassroots networking, such as encouraging residents to become involved in their local BOG societies.

Women in Otolaryngology (WIO) Section                                                    

The Women in Otolaryngology (WIO) Section seeks to support women otolaryngologists by identifying their needs, fostering their development, and promoting women as leaders in the specialty.

WIO Endowment Committee                                                                         

Sujana S. Chandrasekhar, MD, Chair

  • The WIO Endowment Committee received and reviewed six grant applications and in conjunction with the WIO Section’s Governing Council awarded two grants. Grant awardees were: Dr. Jennifer Villwock/Dr. Erynne Faucett/Dianne Durham, PhD ($5,080) for their project “Vitality in Medicine: A Modified Delphi Study of Women’s Leadership in Medicine and Utility of Self-Coaching Techniques to Address Gaps and Enhance Success” with the goal to establish podcasts and other open-access online resources; and Dr. Richard Gurgel/Dr. Sukgi Choi/Dr. Robert Miller ($5,000) for their project “Evaluating Gender Parity in Operative Experience for Otolaryngology Residences in the United States” with the goal to increase awareness of disparities identified and to develop innovative solutions in the future. The total amount of grant funding awarded was $10,080.
  • The WIO Endowment totaled $550,885, as of June 30, 2018. Contributions received or pledged in FY18 totaled $6,250, and $10,916 was distributed in grants and awards.

Young Physicians Section (YPS)

Daniel C. Chelius, Jr., MD

We had an outstanding turnout for the AAO-HNS YPS General Assembly.  The lecture by our keynote speaker Dr. Mikki Hebl on bias was fascinating and timely.  Exciting new initiatives for the upcoming year were also discussed.

  • The recent AAO-HNS membership survey (in which over 20% of respondents were young physicians) identified a perceived knowledge gap among our members regarding practice management issues.
  • YPS is convening a work group to assemble a “tool kit” of resources for young otolaryngologists on a variety of practice management topics from billing and coding to contract negotiation to financial planning.
  • This work group has also been tasked with developing a series of short podcasts on popular practice management issues faced by young physicians.

This year, we introduced the AAO-HNS Young Physician Model Mentor Award.  The following mentors were selected for being influential in shaping young physicians:

  • Stacey L. Ishman, MD, MPH
  • Giancarlo F. Zuliani, MD
  • James D. Sidman, MD
  • Regan Thomas, MD, FACS
  • Bill Lydiatt, MD, FACS, EMBA
  • Ellis M. Arjmand, MD, PhD, MMM

Also, due to the generous support of the AAO-HNS we were able to award travel grants to 8 of our YPS members (listed below) that attended the General Assembly.

  • Chris Chacko
  • Scott Chaiet
  • Allison Dobbie
  • Brad Lawson
  • Carol Liu
  • David Ludlow
  • Aru Panwar
  • Brianne Rob

More from December 2018/January 2019 - Vol. 37, No. 11