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Society of Hospital Medicine Joins the Council of Medical Specialty Societies in Condemning Recent Claims of Physicians Overcounting COVID-19 Deaths for Financial or Political Gain

October 26, 2020

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Representing the fastest-growing specialty in modern healthcare, the Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM) is the leading medical society for hospitalists and their patients.

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The Society of Hospital Medicine (SHM), the leading medical society for hospitalists and their patients, stands with the Council of Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS) and its fellow member societies in condemning recent claims that physicians, including hospitalists, are overcounting COVID-19 deaths for financial or political gain.

Hospitalists remain on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic, caring for patients when they are at their most vulnerable and selflessly placing their lives at risk amidst this health crisis. In addition to managing patient care, hospitalists play critical roles in managing health system responses as the pandemic evolves and conducting research to better understand the impact of COVID-19 on patients and communities throughout the country.

SHM is steadfast in supporting hospitalists who are providing the highest quality of patient care while responding to the needs of the patient population with COVID-19 and other illnesses requiring hospitalization.

The official CMSS statement is below:

Speaking with one voice, the Council of Medical Specialty Societies (CMSS), with 45 specialty societies representing more than 800,000 physician members, condemns the baseless claim that physicians are overcounting Covid-19 deaths for financial or political gain.

This implication is a direct affront to the professionalism and ethics of physicians and other health professionals who serve at the frontline of this pandemic at great risk to themselves and their families, often without adequate personal protective equipment. Many physicians have taken pay cuts to ensure that struggling medical practices and healthcare facilities remain open for their patients.

Although CMSS and its member societies should not have to defend the integrity of physicians and other clinicians during a national crisis, we stand with our members who are tirelessly working to serve the needs of their patients and their communities. These baseless claims do a disservice to all health professionals and promulgate misinformation that hinders our nation’s efforts to get the Covid-19 pandemic under control. Every American deserves a strong public health response to the pandemic based on sound science and respect for those who provide care.