ABIM Foundation Names Top Articles in Medical Professionalism

Sixth Annual John A. Benson Jr., MD Professionalism Article Prize Winners Announced

Philadelphia, PA – Today, the ABIM Foundation announced recipients of the sixth annual John A. Benson Jr., MD Professionalism Article Prize. The winning articles explored pressing professionalism challenges facing physicians, including the relationship between physician satisfaction, well-being and quality of care, and how remediation approaches can be designed to foster professionalism behaviors.

The journal articles receiving the award are:

Time to Loosen the Apron Strings: Cohort-based Evaluation of a Learner-driven Remediation Model at One Medical School” by S. Beth Bierer, PhD; Elaine F. Dannefer, PhD; and John E. Tetzlaff, MD

Published in the September 2015 issue of the Journal of General Internal Medicine, this article explores opportunities for medical students to play a leadership role in developing their own remediation models to address professionalism lapses. The authors question traditional faculty-driven remediation models that place students in a passive role, and posit that adopting a learner-driven approach helps students take full responsibility for their actions and provides students opportunities for additional learning and growth.

Physician Satisfaction and Physician Well-Being: Should Anyone Care” by Lawrence P. Casalino, MD, PhD; and Francis J. Crosson, MD

In this February 2015 article published in Professions & Professionalism, the authors analyze relationships between physician satisfaction, physician well-being and quality of care and create a model of the potential consequences of physician dissatisfaction, stating that “highly professional physicians will try hard to do the right thing even when they are not being measured, and many critical areas of medical care—for example diagnosis—are not currently measured and may never be amenable to accurate measurement.

How Do Medical Schools Identify and Remediate Professionalism Lapses in Medical Students? A Study of U.S. and Canadian Medical Schools” by Deborah Ziring, MD; Deborah Danoff, MD; Suely Grosseman, MD, PhD; Debra Langer, MPA; Amanda Esposito, MS; Mian Kouresch Jan, MD; Steven Rosenzweig, MD; and Dennis Novack, MD

This article, published in the July 2015 edition of Academic Medicine, sought to better understand remediation best practices to address professionalism lapses among medical students. Citing a lack of comprehensive research in this area, the authors explored current medical school policies and practices and found wide variability in approaches. They concluded with a series of suggested next steps that included creation of a repository of examples of remediation policies, faculty training to enhance skills and knowledge in addressing professionalism lapses, and long-term studies to measure effectiveness of strategies as measured through student outcomes.

“While physicians are being called on to practice in increasingly complex and demanding environments, the principles and commitments articulated in the Physician Charter can serve as guideposts to help incorporate the ideals of professionalism in our day-to-day work,” said Richard J. Baron, MD, President and CEO of the ABIM Foundation. “This year’s Benson Article Prize winners highlight the importance of instilling professionalism values in our future physicians—as well as helping them overcome challenges to embodying these values when they enter practice—so that they can deliver the best quality care to patients all across our health care system.”

The ABIM Foundation created the annual prize in 2011 to celebrate and encourage outstanding contributions to the growing body of literature on medical professionalism and commitments articulated in the Physician Charter. Over the past six years, more than 450 articles have been considered for the award and 18 winners declared.

Articles published in English language, peer-reviewed journals between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2015 were eligible for the prize. A committee of physicians and other leaders in health care reviewed 40 articles meeting those criteria and selected the winners based on clarity of writing, thoroughness, methodology and contributions to the field and society.

Members of the selection committee included:

  • Louise Arnold, PhD, Professor Emerita, Office of Medical Education, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine
  • Richard Frankel, PhD, Professor of Medicine, Indiana University School of Medicine
  • Rosemary Gibson, author, Medicare Meltdown
  • John A. Benson Jr., MD, President Emeritus, American Board of Internal Medicine and ABIM Foundation
  • Lorna Lynn, MD, Vice President, Medical Education Research, American Board of Internal Medicine
  • Walter McDonald, MD, Emeritus Executive Vice President and Chief Executive Officer, American College of Physicians-American Society of Internal Medicine
  • Hayley Goldbach, MD, Intern, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
  • Daniel Wolfson, MHSA, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, ABIM Foundation

In recognition of the important role the prize plays in advancing medical professionalism, in 2015 the Foundation renamed the award in honor of American Board of Internal Medicine and ABIM Foundation President Emeritus John A. Benson Jr., MD. For more than two decades, Dr. Benson taught medical students at the University of Nebraska Medical Center, where he also worked to foster interprofessional education, and at Oregon Health & Science University School of Medicine, where he served on the Center for Ethics in Health Care. He has received several honors for his work in medical education and clinical medicine and has written extensively about professionalism.

Links to the winners’ abstracts, along with a comprehensive medical professionalism bibliography and information on previous winners, can be found on the Foundation’s website.


The mission of the ABIM Foundation is to advance medical professionalism to improve the health care system. We achieve this by collaborating with physicians and physician leaders, medical trainees, health care delivery systems, payers, policy makers, consumer organizations and patients to foster a shared understanding of professionalism and how they can adopt the tenets of professionalism in practice. To learn more about the ABIM Foundation, visit www.abimfoundation.org, connect with us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter.


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