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2013 Choosing Wisely Recommendations

In September 2013, the Society of General Internal Medicine (SGIM) released a list of specific tests or procedures that are commonly ordered but not always necessary in general internal medicine as part of the Choosing Wisely® campaign, an initiative of the ABIM Foundation. The list identifies five targeted, evidence-based recommendations that can support conversations between patients and physicians about what care is really necessary.  

“Physicians in General Internal Medicine have a special long-term relationship with their patients. Our goal is to maintain our patients' health and function, to treat their acute and chronic diseases, and to coordinate care with other specialties on behalf of our patients. The Choosing Wisely topics seek to identify areas where we can engage our patients in conversations designed to enhance their health across this spectrum of practice. We are proud to engage in this specialty-defined Choosing Wisely effort to enhance care on behalf of our patients,” said Laurence F. McMahon, MD, MPH (University of Michigan Medical Center), chair of the SGIM ad hoc Choosing Wisely committee.

“SGIM has shown tremendous leadership by releasing its list of tests and procedures they say are commonly done in general internal medicine, but aren’t always necessary,” said Richard J. Baron, MD, president and CEO of the ABIM Foundation. “The content of this list and all of the others developed through this effort are helping physicians and patients across the country engage in conversations about what care they need, and what we can do to reduce waste and overuse in our health care system.”

To date, more than 80 national and state medical specialty societies, regional health collaboratives and consumer partners have joined Choosing Wisely to advance conversations about appropriate care. With the release of more than 30 new lists in late 2013 and early 2014, the campaign will have covered more than 250 tests and procedures that the specialty society partners say are overused and inappropriate, and that physicians and patients should discuss.

The campaign also continues to reach millions of consumers nationwide through a stable of consumer and advocacy partners, led by Consumer Reports—the world’s largest independent product-testing organization—which has worked with the ABIM Foundation to distribute patient-friendly resources for consumers and physicians to engage in these important conversations. 

To learn more about Choosing Wisely and to view the complete lists and additional detail about the recommendations and evidence supporting them, visit

SGIM's February & March 2014 issues of Forum featured articles and letters to the editor regarding the Choosing Wisely Campaign:

  • Bass, E. (2014) What is SGIM Doing to Create Value for Clinicians, Educators and Investigators? SGIM Forum: 37(2): 3, 12.

  • Letters to the Editor. SGIM Forum: 37(2): 4-5, 15.

  • Bass, E. (2014) Controversy about Choosing Wisely and Creating Value for Patients. SGIM Forum: 37(3): 3, 10.

    Choosing Wisely Videos

    Choosing Wisely is pleased to share a series of new videos featuring leaders from across the health care system talking about the challenges, opportunities and impact of the Choosing Wisely campaign: