The American Medical Association has a new Executive Vice President and CEO -- Dr. James L. Madara, a pathologist and former dean of the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.
Madara, 60, will leave a job as senior adviser with Leavitt Partners, the health care consulting firm started by former Health and Human Services Secretary Mike Leavitt. He previously held the Timmie Professor and Chair of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at the Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta before taking over at the University of Chicago, where he was also CEO of the University of Chicago Medical Center.
The current AMA chief executive, Dr. Michael Maves, said last December that he would step down from his post with the organization he has led since 2001.
"Dr. Madara is a strong strategic thinker and planner who has a track record of bringing people together to accomplish significant, ambitious, health-related goals and projects," Dr. Ardis Hoven, chair of AMA's Board of Trustees, said in a statement. "Having overseen a $1.6 billion integrated academic medical center, Dr. Madara understands many of the complex clinical, academic and business-related issues confronting medicine and health care today.”
However, Madara takes over a shrinking ship. AMA membership in fell almost 5.3 percent last year to just below 216,000, according to a report in Modern Healthcare last month.
The organization represents physicians with U.S. doctor of medicine (M.D.) or doctor of osteopathic medicine (D.O.) degrees, physicians with a recognized international equivalent, and medical school students. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says there were 661,400 physicians and surgeons in the United States in 2008.