Chicago Family Physician Advocates for Change in Health Care System
Jim Valek, M.D., attended the Family Medicine Congressional Conference held April 7- 8, 2014, in Washington, D.C. More than 200 physicians attended the meeting.
Sponsored by the American Academy of Family Physicians and the Council of Academic Family Medicine, the conference educates participants on family medicine’s legislative priority issues, trains attendees on how to educate lawmakers on Capitol Hill and allows participants to put these skills to use with federal legislators and their staff. Advocacy is a high priority of AAFP and the CAFM organizations.
As part of the meeting, Dr. Valek had opportunities to meet with Rep. Dan Lipinski and Sen. Mark Kirk to urge passage of legislation that will maintain access to care for elderly and disabled Americans. Such legislation would also address the primary care physician shortage by supporting primary care medical education as well as medical school scholarship and loan repayment programs. Early in his career, Dr. Valek was a recipient of the Illinois Department of Public Health Scholarship, a part of the National Health Service Program. He worked for seven years with a Community Health Center in South Chicago as part of the loan repayment obligation.
Since training in Colorado, Dr. Valek has worked in Southwest Chicagoland for his entire career. He now practices at Little Company of Mary’s Vista Medical Center, located at 10961 S. Kedzie Avenue in Chicago, and heads the Medical Group at Little Company of Mary Hospital.
To maintain membership in the AAFP, Dr. Valek is required to complete a minimum of 150 hours of accredited continuing medical education every three years. The AAFP was the first national medical specialty organization to set continuing education requirements for its members. This requirement helps ensure family physician members stay current on the most up-to-date medical technologies, research and techniques.
ABOUT THE AMERICAN ACADEMY OF FAMILY PHYSICIANS
Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 110,600 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.
Approximately one in four of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is nearly 214 million office visits each year — nearly 74 million more than the next largest medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.
ABOUT LITTLE COMPANY OF MARY HOSPITAL
Little Company of Mary has a rich history of providing the community with nationally recognized, high-quality care. The new state-of-the-art West Pavilion patient tower allows the hospital to focus on its family-centered model and continue with their mission to care and provide the latest technology to heal. For more information about Little Company of Mary, visit our website at www.lcmh.org. For more information on Dr. Jim Valek, please call 773.239.9100 or visit www.LCMMEDICALGROUP.ORG .
To learn more about the specialty of family medicine, the AAFP's positions on issues and clinical care, and for downloadable multi-media highlighting family medicine, visit www.aafp.org/media.
Jim Valek, M.D