American College of Osteopathic Neurologists and Psychiatrists

The American College of Neuropsychiatrists

(An Osteopathic Institution)

By Floyd E. Dunn, D.O., F.A.C.N., F.A.A.M.D.

Resolution No. 2: It is the concern of this committee that the rights of osteopathic psychiatrists and their patients are in jeopardy, and we recommend to the Board of Governors of the American College of Neuropsychiatrists that they appoint a representative to meet with the Executive Secretary of the American Osteopathic Association and his legislative lobbyist in order to seek understanding and assistance in dealing with these issues on both a state and national level.

This college decided to waive the standing rule requiring that a senior member attend at least one our of three annual meetings to maintain his active standing, on motion by Dr. Stiles, seconded by Dr. Curran.

The disruption in college affairs occasioned by the resignation of Dr. John Cox was more serious than was initially apparent. We knew that there was a hiatus somewhere when we did not receive any Bulletins after the January 1980 issue—until, finally, there arrived Vol. XXXI, Issue 1, dated January 1981. But when we read in that issue that, “Mr. Strickler gave a report on the conversation with Carl Cahoon regarding the A.C.N. Incorporation suggestion for the attorneys as requested by the Board at the Mid-Year Meeting. Mr. Stickler was then instructed to talk with Ed Borman to learn if he would handle the incorporation report on behalf of the A.C.N. and to report back at the Mid-year Meeting”, we knew that things were really in a snafu; for the A.C.N. had been incorporated under the laws of the state of Missouri “in perpetuum” in the year 1939. So what had gone wrong with our “Incorporation”? The Bulletin report didn’t tell us.

When we read in the same issue, under the “Report of the A.C.N. Board of Governors” that “Four proposed Fellows received from the AOBN&P include Arthur Greenfield, D.O., John Raymond D.O., Edgar Rennoe, D.O. and Fred Still, D.O. who is deceased”, we began to feel that the whole organization had fallen apart. First of all, the AOBNP has no function in A.C.N. business. Its sole function is to examine qualified candidates in neurology and/or psychiatry. Secondly, only the Conclave of Fellows refers proposed Fellows to the Board of Governors. And thirdly, deceased or not, Fred Still was one of the Founders of, and a Charter Fellow of, the American College of Neuropsychiatrists.

Even the people who were discussing the ‘Draft Copy’ of a Model Program in Psychiatry were in error when “it stated that the current requirement in two years of each for dual certification in Neurology and Psychiatry. That requirement originally stated that the first year of training in neurology or psychiatry would be quite similar, with considerable time being spent studying the basic sciences and learning techniques of interviewing and learning how to take histories and conduct proper examinations on neurological and psychiatric patients. The following two years were differentiated, and the trainee could wait until his first year of training completed before deciding whether he wanted neurology or psychiatry—or whether he wanted two years of each, as your author elected. But when you add these years together, it comes out FIVE years, so to say “two years of each” without paying attention to the all-important BASIC year totally distorts the facts. Unfortunately, practically no one today wants to spend the extra years and additional mind-draining learning effort needed to master the expertise required for certification in both disciplines. The result is that the typical neurologist knows too little psychiatry and the typical psychiatrist knows even less neurology. Our school of medicine is fortunate in having (in this author’s biased opinion) fewer of these ‘typical’ specialists than we see in the dominant school of the healing arts. But to return to the point: here was more evidence of lack of organization: people who were “in charge” evidently did not know their facts.

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