04/15/07 — Goldsboro doctor running for Academy's top post

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Goldsboro doctor running for Academy's top post

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on April 15, 2007 2:05 AM

Dr. Dave Tayloe of Goldsboro Pediatrics is one of two candidates vying for the presidency of the American Academy of Pediatrics later this year.

He was among eight interviewed the last weekend in February, he said, before the national nominating committee narrowed the field down to two. Dr. James E. Shira of Denver, Colo., a professor of pediatrics at the University of Colorado School of Medicine, is the other candidate.

Ballots go out to the 60,000 membership in September, with the outcome announced in October. Otherwise, there's "no campaign," Tayloe said.

"You can't raise money and you don't really campaign but (you) can contact people you know," he said. "It's kind of a lady/gentleman-type experience. The Academy doesn't want anyone to walk away from this with ill feelings."

The two candidates will travel to each of the five district meetings nationwide and speak. There are actually 10 districts across the country, Tayloe said, but they double up and convene meetings.

Tayloe has served in numerous leadership positions with the national AAP and in the state chapter. When he was president of the latter, from 1993 to 1995, the state won the AAP outstanding chapter award.

He has also been one of the architects of the successful child health system in the state that includes the N.C. Universal Childhood Vaccine Distribution Program, the physician-directed Medicaid managed care initiative and the N.C. Health Choice Program.

Since founding Goldsboro Pediatrics in 1977, it has expanded to include three other sites -- Mount Olive, LaGrange and Princeton -- and has 12 doctors and seven nurse practitioners.

Locally, Tayloe has actively advocated for school health issues, child abuse prevention and adolescent pregnancy prevention.

The national presidency brings with it a salary and two-year commitment. Effective in late October, the position involves being vice president for one year, with the presidential term to run from October 2008 until October 2009.

The first year, he envisions being able to continue in his practice. With all the duties of the presidency, which includes extensive travel, Tayloe said he would likely take a leave of absence.

"My practice has been very supportive of the time that I have spent working for the academy," he said. "The partners have known this might happen for a while."

One reason for the loyal support, he said, is "my group's always understood that we need to be involved with our organization that represents us. If you allow the leadership of your organization to become devoid of pediatricians, you shouldn't complain about how Medicaid or the state or other programs treat people."

These days, Tayloe said, insurance companies are not being kind to pediatricians.

"They're making our lives extremely difficult," he said.

With reimbursement from insurance companies hovering around 70 percent, Tayloe said pediatricians in North Carolina have lobbied for 95 percent, even though it should be 100 percent.

"Sixty percent of our cash flow is through Medicaid," he said. "If you're president (of AAP), you really do have access to the federal government people. It's time to fix it."

If Tayloe is chosen for the leadership role, it will be the first time in five years that a community pediatrician has been at the helm.

"There are teaching pediatricians," he explained. "The last four or five presidents have been in teaching hospitals in academic centers. It's a little bit unusual for a general pediatrician to find the time to be involved enough in the academy to consider running for president."

Tayloe has always been very vocal about the issues, particularly those regarding at-risk children and the uninsured. He said he would look forward to continuing that role on a larger scale.

"Children will not have access to good pediatric care if pediatricians cannot keep their offices open based on Medicaid reimbursements," he said.

"If I'm elected, it will be my job to represent pediatricians and children nationwide. My main push will be to bring fairness to government subsidized health programs for at-risk children."