Special Article| Volume 22, ISSUE 9, P1778-1783.e4, September 2021

Defining the Core Skills and Activities of the Attending Physician in Post-Acute and Long-Term Care


      The American Board of Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine (ABPLM) contracted with a psychometric firm to perform a 3-phase Job Analysis following best practices. Literature was reviewed, a task force of subject matter experts was convened, a survey was developed and sent via Survey Monkey to attending physicians practicing in post-acute and long-term care settings (PALTC). The task force refined a comprehensive list of the tasks, knowledge, and medical knowledge needed in the role of attending physician in PALTC. These items were written as statements and edited until consensus was reached on their accuracy, conciseness, and lack of overlap. Task statements described distinct, identifiable, and specific practice-related activities relevant across multiple care settings. Knowledge statements described previously acquired information considered necessary to effectively perform such tasks. The survey consisted of 260 items, including 21 demographic questions, 115 task statements, 73 knowledge statements, and 72 medical knowledge statements. The survey was disseminated via e-mail invitations to Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care (AMDA) members and through an online link available through ABPLM’s website. A total of 389 respondents participated. Survey data were analyzed with statistical analysis software SPSS. For each task and knowledge statement, an Overall Task Rating and Knowledge Rating were developed by combining the importance rating weighted at 65% and (for task) the frequency rating or (for knowledge) the cognitive level weighted at 35%. One task statement and 1 medical knowledge statement had a mean importance rating lower than 2.5 and were dropped from further review, resulting in a final count of 114 task, 73 knowledge, and 71 medical knowledge statements (258 total). The results of this Job Analysis highlight the unique and specific nature of medical care provided by attending physicians across a range of PALTC settings. These findings lay a foundation for Focused Practice Designation or Subspecialty in PALTC and changes in practice and policy.


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