EB: What are the main goals of AAIM’s current strategic plan?

CB: In September 2020, the AAIM Board of Directors approved a new strategic plan with a charge to elevate diversity, equity, and inclusion as the foundation for launching all initiatives.1 The plan has two main goals: 1) AAIM will provide transformational professional development to physician and administrative leaders in academic internal medicine (IM); and 2) AAIM will redesign the transitions across the continuum of IM education.

EB: What are the most important current initiatives for achieving AAIM’s main goals?

CB: To address the first goal, AAIM launched three initiatives:

  1. Initiative One focuses on developing a new executive leadership and professional development program. The program includes new pathways for professional development.
  2. Initiative Two focuses on creating a business of medicine education portfolio. The portfolio includes education and professional development opportunities to meet the needs of underrepresented faculty and administrators.
  3. Initiative Three focuses on developing and disseminating best practices to improve medical education faculty performance. The objective of this initiative is to become the “go-to” resource for clinician-educators at the medical school, residency, and fellowship training levels.

To address the second goal, AAIM launched three more initiatives:

  1. Initiative Four focuses on promoting innovation in medical education research. We expect this initiative to generate curricula across the continuum of IM training that support cultural competency, diversity, equity, and inclusion, as well as enhance medical knowledge and skill.
  2. Initiative Five focuses on developing and disseminating best practices to expand opportunities for underrepresented faculty to be part of the physician-scientist workforce. This initiative involves creation of educational and networking opportunities.
  3. Initiative Six focuses on developing robust evaluation and trustable communication processes for transitions during IM training. As part of this initiative, AAIM formed task forces that are developing recommendations on: competencies across the IM education continuum; refinement of the IM structured evaluative letter; the IM match process; standards for a robust handoff to include individual learning plans and graduate medical education (GME) orientation standards; inclusive and equitable standards for the interview process; meaningful and verifiable IM GME program attributes; and Electronic Residency Application Service filter options for holistic sorting of applicants.

EB: What are the best ways for SGIM members to contribute to AAIM’s initiatives?

CB: AAIM seeks to facilitate collaboration between all organizations having a stake in IM education and training. For several years, AAIM has hosted regular meetings of the Internal Medicine Education Advisory Board (IMEAB), with representatives from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), ACGME Residency Review Committee for IM, American Board of Internal Medicine, American College of Osteopathic Internists, American College of Physicians, American Medical Association, Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), Education Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates, National Board of Medical Examiners, Society of Hospital Medicine, and of course SGIM. When the IMEAB met on February 11, 2022, we had a great opportunity to share the progress on our current initiatives and obtain valuable feedback from representatives of these organizations. We welcomed the participation of a representative of SGIM’s Education Committee, Laura Snydman, MD, who is helping to identify opportunities for more SGIM members to contribute to the AAIM initiatives. For example, because many SGIM members serve as clerkship directors and residency program directors, they could provide input to the task force on standards for a robust handoff, or the task force on inclusive and equitable standards for the interview process. In addition, SGIM members with expertise in the methods of medical education research could contribute to analytic work needed to support development of evidence-based standards. SGIM members also could help to disseminate and implement recommendations that emerge from AAIM’s initiatives as well as study the subsequent impact of recommended changes in IM education and training.

EB: What do you see as the most important accomplishments of AAIM during your tenure as the CEO and President?

CB: This is hard for me to answer because there are many. But if I look at it from a macro-perspective, it goes back to the reason AAIM was birthed in the first place. All five of its constituent organizations were frustrated that they felt they were always in a reactive mode and that they had negligible clout with organizations making decisions that affected them such as AAMC, ACGME, etc. The notion was that if all could join together, we would have a seat at the table. So, we merged all five organizations. It took some time to get to what I would call “group think” and that is a constant effort not unlike within a Department of Medicine itself. We now have a great forum for the different areas of medical education to talk with and understand one another. That has been very gratifying. To continue the theme of seats at the table, my position was created with that in mind; namely, the President would for the most part be the outward face of AAIM building relationships with stakeholders. I think our most important accomplishment is that it has worked and we now have great collaborative relationships with numerous organizations in the house of medicine including SGIM.


  1. AAIM. AAIM Strategic Plan. https://www.im.org/about/about-strategic-plan. Accessed March 15, 2022.



Health Equity, Health Policy & Advocacy, Leadership, Administration, & Career Planning, Medical Education, SGIM, Social Determinants of Health

Author Descriptions

Dr. Bass (basse@sgim.org) is the CEO of SGIM. Dr. Brater has been the President and CEO of AAIM since 2007.