On April 4, nine specialty organizations made public their lists of unnecessary tests performed that lack effectiveness and are, according to the Medical Professionalism Blog, a “poor use of health care resources”.

The “Choosing Wisely” campaign, an initiative led by the ABIM Foundation, promotes conversation between doctors and patients about care that is truly necessary, not duplicative, supported by evidence, and free from harm. According to the “Choosing Wisely” website, each participating organization was asked to choose five tests or procedures commonly performed in their fields that patients and their doctors should discuss or question.

Daniel Wolfson, the Executive Vice President & COO of the ABIM Foundation and the curator of the Medical Professionalism Blog said that 72 hours after the campaign announcement, the ABIM website was flooded with those discussing the initiative.

“For the most part, there was not a lot of talk about rationing or death panels, which was a pleasant surprise. Rather, there were constructive conversations and applause about the leadership of the specialty societies and the involvement of Consumer Reports. There was some hope that we had turned back a tide of hysteria and polarization around health care reform and could now begin building the health care system we want for ourselves, our children and our grandchildren. It appears that we struck a chord among physicians, patients and other stakeholders without the partisan politics.”

Wolfson further noted various reasons why the “Choosing Wisely” campaign holds such promise for both physicians and patients. Read his full post here.