Choosing Wisely® in Maine


Welcome to the Maine Quality Counts (QC) Choosing Wisely resource page. 

Maine Quality Counts is sharing the Choosing Wisely campaign to consumers/patients, health care providers, health plans and employers in Maine.  The goal is to encourage health care providers, medical groups hospital systems, patients and community groups to have meaningful, informed discussions about medical tests, procedures and treatments that may be unnecessary, and in some instances cause harm.

What does Choosing Wisely Do?  

  • Helps patients/consumers make smart and effective care choices by using the 5 Questions with their health care provider
  • Makes sure the right care is delivered at the right time
  • Helps increase quality, improve safety of health care in Maine and reduce costs
  • Provides awareness of unnecessary tests and treatments or procedures


QC has received funding from the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation to lead one of seven initiatives in the United States to reduce unnecessary tests and treatments.  Click on our Focus Areas page to learn more.

Choosing Wisely is an initiative of the ABIM Foundation.  More than 70 medical specialty societies have joined the campaign and created lists of "Things Providers and Patients Should Question".  The lists include evidence-based recommendations that should be discussed by providers and patients to help make wise decisions about the most appropriate care based on a patients' individual situation.

Printed Resources for Use by Health Care Providers and Patients

Consumer Reports has joined the campaign.  It has developed the easy-to-understand, evidence-based materials for use by consumer partners, health care providers and patients to help explain why it is necessary to question the use of a certain test, procedure, or treatment.  These patient facing materials help patients engage their health care provider in these conversations and empower them to ask questions about what tests and procedures are right for them.  Tools and resources for employers are also available through Maine Quality Counts.

View this video for a short explanation about why Choosing Wisely is needed and what it is.



Choosing Wisely® Initiative 2015-2018
How to Engage Your Group/Business with Choosing Wisely - 3 Things You Can Do
October 19, 2016

This brief guide, "How to Engage Your Group/Business with Choosing Wisely - 3 Things You Can Do", is meant to help you get started in sharing useful information to help others engage in conversations about the overuse of tests and procedures and support health care providers efforts to help patients/consumers make smart and effective health care choices.

For more information on Choosing Wisely in Maine , Click here or go to: 

New!  The Powerpoint Presentation that provides an overview of this initiative, as well as important points on "Why now?", addressing patient safety and health care waste.


For Consumers, these two sites provide information that is written in plain language to learn about how to have a conversatin with health care providers on which tests, treatments and procedures may be unnecessary and also to find out the cost of certain procedures on the Compare Maine website:


To Get Started, Click here.

Related Document:
Engage with Choosing Wisely_FINAL.pdf

Data/QI and Debriefing of the First Year - Sharing Successes/Challenges - MOC Webinar
September 7, 2016

Choosing Wisely® MOC Project

"Data/QI and Debriefing of the First Year - Sharing Successes/Challenges"

Wednesday, September 7, 12Noon – 1PM

Presented by:

David Koffman, MD

Danielle Hersey, BSN, RN


 As part of Maine Quality Counts’ (QC) organizational commitment to meaningfully engage consumers in transforming care and to build patient-provider partnerships, QC is launching a multi-stakeholder effort to spread the Choosing Wisely® initiative developed by the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation. This initiative, “Spreading Choosing Wisely® in Maine”, seeks to reduce unnecessary use of tests and treatments in two specific geographic regions of the state, Brunswick/Bath and greater Bangor, working with health care providers and community members.


Join us for the final Choosing Wisely webinar for 2016 on “Data/QI and Debriefing of the First Year – Sharing Successes/Challenges” with David Koffman, MD.  

Following Dr. Koffman’s discussion, the New England QIN-QIO will announce, that in alignment with the President’s Advisory Council on Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria (PACCARB), will be providing learning sessions and direct assistance to outpatient providers in order to implement best practices in antibiotic stewardship as defined by the Centers for Disease Control.

 Participants of this webinar will be able to:

  • Determine best practices for Choosing Wisely integration in practice.
  • Understand positive impact of Choosing Wisely on building the patient/health care team partnership and improving patient/team satisfaction.
  • Identify tools to help patients with questions about costs of care.


This webinar is for physicians who have signed up to participate in the Choosing Wisely® MOC Initiative.  However, all interested providers are welcome to attend.

In 2012 the ABIM Foundation launched Choosing Wisely® with a goal of advancing a national dialogue on avoiding wasteful or unnecessary medical tests, treatments and procedures.

Choosing Wisely® centers around conversations between providers and patients informed by the evidence-based recommendations of “Things Providers and Patients Should Question.” More than 70 specialty society partners have released recommendations with the intention of facilitating wise decisions about the most appropriate care based on a patients’ individual situation.  Each recommendation provides information on when tests and procedures may be appropriate, as well as the methodology used in its creation.  


Powerpoint Slides

Audio Only

Spreading Choosing Wisely® Campaign in Maine: Focus on Reducing Benzodiazepine Use in Patients over 65 Years of Age
June 2, 2016

Spreading Choosing Wisely® Campaign in Maine:  Focus on Reducing Benzodiazepine Use in Patients over 65 Years of Age

Choosing Wisely® MOC Project


May 11, 2016 for St. Joseph Hospital and Penobscot Community Health Care

June 1, 2016 for Mid Coast Hospital

This education is important due to benzodiazepine use by elderly patients is associated with adverse outcomes including increased risk of falls and fractures, motor vehicle accidents and cognitive impairment. Recent studies suggest that individualized feedback and education to physicians may improve drug prescribing.  There is a continued high prevalence of benzodiazepine use by older community-residing adults and of their continued prescription by practitioners, despite well-known adverse effects and the availability of safer, effective alternatives.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand the Choosing Wisely recommendations around limiting benzodiazepine prescribing especially in older patients.
  • Understand the clinical indications for using benzodiazepine and the risks and benefits of the medication.
  • Describe key elements of effective communication with patients regarding management of their anxiety and insomnia including tapering their medication and alternative therapies


Trip Gardner, MD

Dr. Gardner is the Chief Psychiatric Officer and Medical Director of Homeless Health Services at Penobscot Community Health Care.  Since Trip joined in 2004, PCHC has created a model for the integration of mental health and substance abuse services into primary care that has grown to include over 40 multidisciplinary mental health /substance abuse professionals providing consultation, evaluation, medications, individual counseling, and group psychotherapy fully integrated into the primary care practices providing more than 40,000 encounters per year.  Trip serves on the Bangor area controlled substances workgroup and has given presentations to multiple provider groups regarding the responsible use of benzodiazepines.


Jessica Bates, PharmD

Originally from Orono, Maine, Jessica Bates is a Pharmacy Resident at PCHC.  She received her Doctor of Pharmacy degree from Husson University.  Throughout pharmacy school Jessica worked at a local community pharmacy where she honed her patient interaction skills and became very passionate about providing care to patients of all socioeconomic backgrounds.  During her clinical rotations, she also became interested in the fields of ambulatory care, drug information, and pharmacy education. She plans to spend her year enhancing her skills in leadership, interprofessional collaboration, and teaching.  Jessica is very excited to have the opportunity to begin pursuing a career that includes a combination of the areas she is passionate about within an organization that has the resources to make her personal and professional goals a reality.



Podcast (Audio Only)

Powerpoint Slides