Addressing Competency in Rheumatology Telehealth Care Delivery

for the American College of Rheumatology Committee on Training and Workforce, Lisa Zickuhr, Daniel A. Albert, Connie Herndon, Lisa F. Imundo, Michael J. Lopker, Bethany Marston, Nabeela Mian, Kenneth O'Rourke, Karina D. Torralba, Tiffany Westrich-Robertson, R. Swamy Venuturupalli, Jason Kolfenbach, Marcy B. Bolster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objective: Telehealth is an essential facet of care delivery for patients with rheumatic diseases. The Association of American Medical College's (AAMC) telehealth competencies (TCs) define the skills required for delivering general telehealth care across the range of clinician experience. In this study, the American College of Rheumatology's (ACR) TCs working group aimed to adapt the AAMC TCs to rheumatology, outlining the skills acquisition unique to rheumatology with a focus on knowledge, skills, and behaviors expected of recent rheumatology fellowship graduates. Methods: Through a collaborative process, the working group adapted the AAMC TCs to the training structure and practice of rheumatology. The rheumatology TCs underwent peer review among recipients of the Clinician Scholar Educator Award and attendees at the ACR 2021 Convergence conference. Results: The rheumatology TCs define 24 essential skills required for synchronous telehealth care of patients with rheumatic diseases. The working group adapted the AAMC's 20 TCs organized within 6 domains, added 2 skills to the AAMC's domains of patient safety and appropriate use, and data collection and assessment, and created a novel domain of systems-based requirements with 2 competencies. The rheumatology TCs define expected skill levels for recent rheumatology fellowship graduates and experienced rheumatology clinicians. Conclusion: The rheumatology TCs represent the first adaptation of the AAMC TCs to subspecialty care, expanding the scope to include rheumatology fellowship graduates and additional domains of rheumatology practice. These competencies can guide curricular innovations and measurements of proficiency in telehealth care delivery among rheumatology trainees and experienced clinicians, enhancing the care provided to patients with rheumatic diseases.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1213-1219
Number of pages7
JournalArthritis Care and Research
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2023


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