A doctor association is a professional organization that promotes high standards in medical education and practice, advances the science of medicine and acts to protect its physician members. Doctor associations also publish research to benefit the public and advocate for the health of all people. They are usually independent from any government or corporation.
In the United States, there are many physician organizations that are affiliated with the American Medical Association (AMA). Each one of these groups is governed by its own rules. The AMA’s main goal is to improve the quality of healthcare and enhance patient safety. Its services include research on a variety of topics, and the publishing of several peer-reviewed journals, including the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Founded in 1847, the AMA is an international medical organization that advocates for physicians and the interests of the general public. Its policies are based on scientific principles and the experience of practicing physicians. The AMA also has a series of standing committees that study particular issues, such as public health, professional ethics, patient care and medical education. The AMA is a member-funded organization. Physicians, residents and medical students are eligible for membership.
The AMA has been an important participant in the development of medical laws and regulations, public health programs and healthcare insurance plans. It has a long list of accomplishments, including the establishment of a national vaccination program for smallpox and the development of the first vaccine for polio. It has also promoted a national effort to control smoking and supported laws that prohibit discrimination against AIDS patients. In 1996, the AMA launched a crusade against health plan “gag clauses,” which restricted physicians from discussing their patients with non-physician professionals. This campaign resulted in the removal of these restrictive provisions by five leading managed care providers and passage of laws prohibiting them in 16 states.
Another major focus of the AMA is the advocacy of high ethical standards for all doctors. It maintains a series of Declarations, Resolutions and Statements that guide the practice of medicine internationally. These are designed to help all medical practitioners, at home or abroad, achieve the highest level of ethics and professionalism. They cover a wide range of issues, from research on human subjects to the care of the wounded during wartime and the promotion of women’s leadership in medicine.
The AMA has also worked to promote the careers of female physicians and to combat gender discrimination in the workplace. It has established scholarship and loan programs, junior branches and awards for women medical students, and mentorship and networking opportunities. It has lobbied for changes to eliminate strict quotas and pay equity in the medical profession. It has a Networking Alliance that brings together female leaders from across specialties, and it sponsors and participates in the leadership of other national and international groups working to advance women in medicine. It has also worked to remove the barriers of sexism and bias that still exist in some medical schools, and it has campaigned for equality in health policy and legislation.