Letter from the Chair: Government Service Neurology Section

March 22, 2011

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The Government Services section is unusual in that it is not based upon a specific neurologic disorder, nor is it based upon a particular practice pattern. The neurologists who are members of the Government Services Section share being government employees; primarily federal employees in the Military, VA, Public Health Service, Indian Health Service, and National Institutes of Health. The Government Services section is also open to state and municipality employees. Due to the nature of their practices, the members of the Government Services section can provide insight into models of patient care other than fee for service. In addition, the VA, Military and other government health care systems of care are large integrated health care systems that provide insight to the AAN about delivery of neurological care on a national and international level.

Another major difference between the Government Services section and other sections is that the federal government members of the Government Services section are not permitted to advocate for themselves or their peers to members of Congress. Therefore, the Government Services section is dependent upon the AAN to advocate for its members.

A number of future directions were identified in the section strategic plan completed last year including:

  1. Enhancing cooperation between VA and Military to continue to improve the care of military personnel and new veterans.
  2. Continue to develop educational programs to inform the AAN of cutting edge neurological care for military personnel, veterans and other groups of Americans treated by members of the Government Services section.
  3. Utilize the AAN to advocate for needs of members of the Government Services section and their patients.

Robert L Ruff, MD, PhD (FAAN)Chair