Dr. Edward Capparelli, a family physician from Jacksboro, Tennessee, has been formally installed as the 168th president of the Tennessee Medical Association, the statewide professional association for nearly 10,000 member physicians.
Dr. Capparelli was sworn in Saturday, May 21, at the organization’s annual meeting in Franklin, Tennessee, where nearly 130 physician leaders from across the state gathered to affirm the nonprofit’s governance, annual slate of business and upcoming legislative positions.
Dr. Capparelli serves as medical director for Mountain People’s Health Councils, Inc. (MPHC), in Oneida, Tennessee.
A TMA member since 1994, Dr. Capparelli has served the organization in numerous capacities, most recently as Speaker of the House of Delegates and preceded by a role as Vice Speaker. He has participated as a regional representative on TMA’s Board of Trustees, and chaired the Judicial Council and Insurance Issues committee.
Dr. Capparelli assumed the presidency from Dr. Ron Kirkland, a board-certified otolaryngologist from Jackson, Tennessee, who led a resurgence in the organization’s membership amid a myriad of challenges introduced during the Covid-19 pandemic. Dr. Capparelli will serve as TMA president until April 2023, providing valuable public and professional outreach on medical issues.
“I am honored to serve as president of the Tennessee Medical Association,” Capparelli said. “I have been a member of this organization for nearly 30 years and have held multiple leadership roles. TMA’s influence is critical to the future of medicine. Physicians need it to serve as a beacon of light and hope for the medical community in our state.”
Dr. Capparelli has filled many medical advisory roles, including Board Chair of the TennCare Pharmacy Advisory Committee whose purpose is to make recommendations regarding a preferred drug list (PDL), the safety and efficacy of drugs and prior authorization criteria and step therapy. He has been an active participant within his local component medical societies, the Roane-Anderson County Medical Society, where he has served as president since 2010, and the Cocke County Medical Society where he was president from 1995-2007.
Dr. Capparelli touted TMA’s legacy and affirmed its priorities during his acceptance speech on Saturday.
“As president, my main focus will be to address physician wellness and burnout in Tennessee. This is not merely a concern for physicians who reach burnout, but for all physicians,” said Capparelli. “I also want to focus on lessening the burden placed on us by insurance companies. Restrictions on getting approval for treatments, advanced imaging, surgeries and medications have cost physicians a great deal of time and extra staff to get approvals to the detriment of our patients.
“I would also like to focus on promoting physician-led, team-based care and work to mend the effect Covid-19 has had on doctors. We need to emerge from this pandemic and start healing. We are a team and need to work together.”
Dr. Capparelli received his medical degree from Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and his Bachelor of Science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, Mass. He completed his residency in family practice with additional obstetrics and surgery at McAllen Methodist Hospital in McAllen, Texas. He completed a fellowship with the American Academy of Family Practice in 1989.
He served as medical director for 10 years as a missionary in Honduras and Nicaragua through the Reformed Church of America.
He has been involved in many professional organizations including the Tennessee Academy of Family Physicians, the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Medical Association and the American Heart Association.