BOARD OF DIRECTORS POLICY PAPER
ON AWARDING RECOGNITION AS A
FELLOW OF UNDERSEA AND HYPERBARIC MEDICINE
CLICK HERE FOR FUHM APPLICATION: DEADLINE JANUARY 1 OF EACH YEAR
REQUIRED ITEMS TO ACCOMPANY APPLICATION (First 4 pages of application):
- Signed cover page.
- Application Fee (non-refundable) of $300. Please submit the FUHM Initial Application Payment Invoice within this application.
- Recent CV (in English) containing sufficient detail to document my eligibility for designation as a FUHM.
- Reference Sheet: please submit five (5) references willing to attest to your professional and ethical stature. References must be a current FUHM (see website for current list) or recognized national or international leaders in the field of UHM who are familiar with your professional work and standing.
1 January: Application with payment must be received by home office
1 March: FUHM Committee to complete review of applicants
March: UHMS BOD vote on applicants at spring BOD Meeting.
April: Notification of application acceptance/denial will be sent
1 May: FUHM Annual Membership Dues of $400 must be received
June: Accepted FUHM recognized at UHMS ASM Awards Banquet
UHM Fellow Award Attestation of Applicant Compliance with UHM Fellow Award Policy Terms and Procedures
As a Fellow of Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine (FUHM) nominee, I certify that I:
- Have read and understand the UHM Fellow Award Policy.
- Meet this Policy's established scholarly and UHM practice eligibility requirements for designation as a FUHM.
- Understand that, unless subsequently required by direction of the Fellowship Committee, items #1, 3, 4 and 5 of this Policy's FUHM Application Process will be waived for fellow nominees.
- Must provide a copy of my most recent CV (in English) containing sufficient detail to document my eligibility for designation as a FUHM.
- Understand that, a $300 one-time non-refundable fee must be submitted with this application.
- Understand that, the initial FUHM Annual Membership Fee will be invoiced upon acceptance and must be received in the UHMS Home office prior to May 1st and in order to maintain my designation as a FUHM and retain the right to use the FUHM designation in my post‐nominals, I will thereafter be required to renew my annual UHMS membership at the UHMS Fellow Rate (currently $400). For current UHMS Emeritus members, the annual FUHM Membership Fee is waived.
Policy and Purpose
Recognition as a Fellow of Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine (FUHM) is awarded to individual members of the Society whose professional activities and standing are judged to be worthy of such recognition. The Undersea and Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS) Board of Directors (hereafter designated as the BOD) confers this recognition based upon the criteria and procedures set forth in this policy document. Candidates considered eligible for FUHM award will be members of the Society in good standing that have devoted significant time and effort to the practice or advancement of Undersea and Hyperbaric Medicine (UHM), achieved a high level of expertise in their field, and demonstrate professional and ethical standards consistent with the aims and expectations of the UHMS.
As such, FUHM recognition is an honor awarded to an individual: it is not a right or a qualification, but an acknowledgement of achievement and high standards of expertise, practice and contribution to the field of UHM. Once awarded, FUHM status is not automatically retained, but is contingent upon the continued good standing of the individual and membership in the UHMS. Consequently, the BOD may rescind FUHM recognition in accordance with the procedures listed herewith.
Ordinarily, individuals are nominated for FUHM recognition by current FUHM awardees, BOD members, or the FUHM Committee (FC). Nominees interested in pursuing formal FUHM recognition must then submit an application requesting consideration for FUHM award. In so doing, the FUHM nominee voluntarily invites a comprehensive evaluation of their practice by their UHM peers.
FUHM award is primarily aimed at recognizing excellence in clinical practice, with medical practitioners being eligible for full FUHM status. However, the UHMS may also choose to recognize individuals who have demonstrated excellence in predominantly scientific or technical aspects of UHM. As soon as non-clinical Fellow recognition becomes available, the application criteria and procedures for the award will be addressed in companion policy papers.
Although FUHM recognition is not an academic qualification or specialty certification, FUHM designees may utilize their award to demonstrate advanced achievement and expertise in Hyperbaric and/or Diving Medicine through, for instance, display of their FUHM award certificate, use of appropriate post-nominals, and inclusion of information regarding their award in CV's, résumés and analogous documents.
FUHM Award Process
The FUHM award process is initiated once an individual is nominated by a current FUHM Member, a Fellow Committee Member (FC) or a Board of Directors Member (BOD). Nominees subsequently wishing to pursue formal recognition as a FUHM must submit formal application to the FC requesting consideration as a FUHM candidate. In order to be eligible for consideration in any given year, the candidate's application must be satisfactorily lodged by the 1st of January of the year preceding requested award. All requirements must be met and the completed application (whether a new application or one constituting an update to an existing application previously deferred) must be on file with the UHMS by this date. Applicants complying with the terms of this deadline will be considered for FUHM award at the Annual Scientific Meeting that next follows a given submission deadline.
The FC, appointed by the President of the UHMS, will initially consider FUHM applications to determine whether the requirements for FUHM recognition have been satisfied. Until FUHM application requirements are fully met, the FC may defer an individual's application or request provision of additional supportive documents at its discretion. Subsequently, the FC will prepare a brief and make recommendations regarding each applicant for consideration by the BOD.
The BOD makes the final decision regarding the applicant's eligibility for award of FUHM recognition.
The BOD may, at any time, modify any portion of these requirements for awarding FUHM recognition.
FUHM Application Criteria
Applicants for FUHM recognition must have achieved the following prior to application:
- Graduation from a medical school deemed acceptable to the BOD.
- Be fully licensed to practice medicine in their state, province, or country.
- Hold a specialist qualification recognized in the applicant's practicing location.
- In the case of US applicants, this requirement is fulfilled by certification by the American Board of Medical Specialties or the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) Bureau of Osteopathic Specialists.
- In cases where the BOD is not familiar with the specialist qualification system indigenous to an applicant's state, province, or country, the applicant will need to demonstrate that their specialist qualification represents an equivalent level of professional recognition and standing as required of US applicants.
- In other cases, the FC may, at its discretion, consider candidates who have medical backgrounds that do not meet this requirement for status as a recognized medical specialist.
- Formal postgraduate training and experience in UHM that is considered by the BOD to be sufficiently rigorous. Wherever an acceptable formal postgraduate specialty qualification exists in the applicant's practice location, the applicant should have achieved such qualification.
- In the USA, a relevant ACGME UHM fellowship or the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) UHM fellowship should have been awarded.
- In other jurisdictions, an equivalent certification should have been obtained. The FC will maintain a register of applicable qualifications that are considered to be equivalent.
In other cases, the applicant's training and experience will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
- A minimum of five years of active practice in the specialty of UHM after completion of all formal training. Where the BOD considers the proportion of time spent in the specialty of UHM to be insufficient, a longer duration of part time practice may be required.
- A current practice that establishes the applicant as a specialist in UHM. The degree to which the individual's practice satisfies this requirement will be determined by the BOD based on the applicants UHM clinical experience as submitted.
- A relevant current appointment to the medical staff of the applicant's primary hospital, university, or healthcare facility with no reportable action pending that could adversely affect staff privileges at that or any other healthcare facility.
- Evidence of good standing and professional proficiency in the applicant's clinical practice environment, as evidenced by formal confirmation of such standing by suitable references, such as the applicant's employer, credentialing body, licensure authority, specialty society, etc.
Beyond the above defined credentialing and medical practice criteria, applicants for FUHM recognition also need to demonstrate continuing active participation and professional excellence in the field of UHM. Consequently, applicants must:
- Have been an active member of the UHMS for a minimum of seven years prior to application and remain so throughout the time of award.
- Be considered to be in good standing in the UHMS.
- Have no reportable action pending that could adversely affect the status of that good standing or threaten ongoing licensure, employment, or academic appointment.
- Demonstrate interest in pursuing professional excellence both as an individual practitioner, researcher, or educator and member of the UHM community. Such interest may be evidenced by participation in at least three of the following activity areas:
- Active involvement in local, regional and / or national UHM societies,
- Participation in UHM related teaching programs, testing or examination of practitioners for UHM specialty certification,
- Contribution as a reviewer, editor, or listed author of published UHM-related scientific article(s) and / or reference material(s) in recognized peer review journal(s) or book(s),
- Active involvement in hospital committee(s), community health planning programs or service as an elected or appointed public official having responsibility for the conduct, oversight, and / or promotion of UHM practice,
- Continuing UHM education through attendance at professional meetings, courses, and / or seminars.
- Be of suitable character and ethical standing as determined by the BOD based upon information obtained from FUHM awardees consulted as references and from any other sources deemed appropriate by the BOD.
FUHM Application Process
Once an individual has been nominated by a current FUHM awardee, FC, or BOD member, the FUHM nominee must then prepare and submit a formal application to the UHMS Home Office to be eligible for further FUHM award consideration. Applicants must demonstrate that they fulfill the requirements for FUHM award and provide evidence of their eligibility as follows:
- A completed formal application from the FUHM nominee.
- All applications must be made in the English language. Where original documents or certificates are not in English, appropriate English translations of these documents must be provided. For critical documents, certified translations may be requested.
- The applicant must designate five references that will be willing to attest to the applicant's professional and ethical stature. All references should be either current FUHM or recognized national or international leaders in the field of UHM, who are familiar with the applicant's professional work and standing. At least two of these five references should be practicing UHM in the same geographic area as the applicant.
- The applicant must provide authorization for hospitals, medical organizations, and others to release information deemed by the FC material to its evaluation of the applicant.
- Applicants for FUHM recognition may be required to compile and submit a summary of all cases the applicant has treated with hyperbaric oxygen therapy over the preceding twelve-month period. The appropriate forms and instructions will be provided. This treatment / supervision list is intended to serve as an index to the volume, variety, and character of an applicant's experience in UHM.
- The FC and BOD reserve the right to request that applicants provide additional evidence of their eligibility or professional proficiency, as well as specific responses to any FC or BOD questions.
- If the applicant's practice changes significantly between the time of application and the time of consideration by the BOD, the applicant must notify the FC.
- No waiver of any element of the above application process will be granted without the express permission of the FC and concurrence of the BOD.
The closing date for receiving completed applications is the 1ST of JANUARY.
Evaluation of FUHM Applications
The evaluation of a FUHM applicant involves assessing a comprehensive body of information and generating opinion relating to the applicant's judgment, experience, professional competence, ethical conduct, professionalism, and attitude toward the constitution of the UHMS.
The FC will review each application for completeness. Whenever an application is incomplete, the applicant will receive notice of the deficiency and be provided an opportunity to correct the omission(s). If the applicant fails to meet the requested requirements, at the discretion of the FC, the application will either be rejected or deferred for consideration until the following year.
If the application is complete, the FC will seek appropriate input from the applicant's designated references and any other information the FC deems relevant to making a rigorous professional assessment.
Each FUHM or recognized leader named as a reference will be asked by the FC to furnish a statement about the applicant's professional and ethical standing in the community. The candidate's primary department chief (or a suitable senior manager) may also be asked to provide their professional assessment of the applicant. The FC may also consult any other person at its discretion.
The FC may request any further information from the applicant deemed relevant to assessing eligibility.
The FC will then evaluate the information collected and make recommendations to the UHMS BOD regarding the acceptability of a given FUHM applicant.
If the applicant has not yet met necessary FUHM award criteria, but is likely to meet the criteria within a short period of time, the applicant will be advised of this and further processing of the application will be deferred until the applicant has met all the FUHM application requirements.
Determination by the BOD
The FC will provide its recommendations for each applicant to the BOD prior to the Spring UHMS Board of Directors Meeting. Additionally, the FC will make all the detailed supporting documents available for review by any or all members of the BOD as requested.
The BOD will then consider the recommendations of the FC and any further information deemed relevant in making its FUHM award decisions. For each application, the Board will make one of three decisions:
- Approved for FUHM award (requires the approval of three-fourths of the BOD).
- Deferred (for one or two years)—Deferment is designed to give the applicant an opportunity to acquire further knowledge or additional experience or to develop professionally. It also provides the UHMS with an additional period for observation, investigation, and further evaluation of the FUHM applicant's eligibility.
- Denial of Application (see below for rules of Re-applications and Appeals).
Award of FUHM Recognition
The regulations for recognition as a FUHM have been formulated by the BOD and apply uniformly to all applicants. No other means of admission is available.
Successful applicants will be formally awarded FUHM recognition during a suitable ceremony at the UHMS Annual Scientific Meeting. FUHM status is conferred by UHMS President, or an appropriate delegate, on behalf of the BOD.
Successful applicants will be notified by letter of their prospective FUHM recognition in advance of the UHMS Annual Scientific Meeting; however FUHM designation will take effect when conferred by the Board of Directors during the UHMS Spring Board Meeting.
It is an ongoing requirement that all FUHM and prospective FUHM notify the UHMS Membership Coordinator of any changes in their location, practice association, type of practice or hospital privileges, because such changes may affect their FUHM eligibility.
Recognition as a FUHM does not automatically continue in perpetuity. Rather, it is dependent upon the FUHM to maintain current membership in the UHMS and remain in good standing within the UHMS, their professional community, and the medical profession in general. The BOD will retain the right to revoke any individual's recognition as a FUHM if evidence comes to light that suggests this would be the appropriate course of action.
Re-applications and Appeals
Applicants who have received a denial of their application or individuals who have had their previously awarded FUHM recognition revoked may request an appeal. To initiate an appeal, the applicant must submit a written request to the UHMS President.
Upon receipt of an appeal, the UHMS President will convene an ad-hoc FUHM Appeals Committee consisting of three eminent and independent persons to assess the appeal. These persons would normally be three FUHM awardees who are not current members of the FC or the BOD. Where the UHMS President considers him or herself insufficiently independent to nominate suitable appeal review persons, then a UHMS Past President may be requested to perform this function.
The FUHM Appeals Committee will assess all information deemed appropriate and make a recommendation to the BOD within six months of the Appeal being lodged.
The BOD will consider the recommendation of the FUHM Appeals Committee: however the BOD is not bound by this advice. In the case of FUHM application denial, the BOD may reverse or uphold the denial at its discretion. Similarly, in the case of revocation of previously awarded FUHM recognition, the BOD may reverse or uphold the revocation at its discretion. However, the final decision of the BOD, following an appeal, is binding.
Following a denial of appeal, the affected UHMS member may submit a new application after a waiting period of three years. This application will be considered without prejudice as a de novo application.
All FUHM nominations, application documents, and other information related to applications will be treated as confidential. Except as required by law, the UHMS and its employees and officers will not disclose any of this information to anyone other than the applicant and, as required, those individuals directly involved in the evaluation of the FUHM application.
The UHMS BOD will determine the fees applicable to FUHM application and corresponding annual membership dues. FUHM fees and annual membership dues may be modified or waived at the discretion of the BOD.
Fees associated with FUHM recognition may include any or all of the following:
- Application Fee ($300)—This fee must accompany every application for consideration as a FUHM. The fee is intended to cover a portion of the cost of reviewing and processing the application and is not refundable.
- FUHM Annual Membership Fee ($400)—An invoice is sent once an applicant is accepted. If the Membership fee is not received by May 1st the applicant will not be awarded FUHM recognition in that calendar year (presented each year at the UHMS Annual Scientific Meeting Awards Banquet for - new inductees only). Membership fees following induction will remain $400 annually.