Terms and Conditions


ACOS Online Community Rules, etiquette, and disclaimers                            

Last updated November 7, 2023

ACOS Online Community Rules, Etiquette and Disclaimers

Thank you for your participation in the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons (ACOS) online community. We would like to ensure the best possible experience for all members. Basic guidelines have been established so this can be achieved. Your participation on any ACOS online site is contingent on your consent to the rules below.

ACOS online services are intended for engagement and discussion. The information contained on these sites only represents the personal views and opinions of the submitting authors, but do not represent the opinions, policies, or endorsement of ACOS.

Any material downloaded or otherwise obtained through the use of the site is done at the participant’s own discretion and risk and the participant will be solely responsible for any damage to his/her computer system or loss of data that results from the download of such material and/or data.

Additionally, see the various disclaimers below.

There are a variety of options offered by ACOS where members can identify opportunities for information and engagement. Here are some examples: 

·        Finding or seeking a job go to: https://facos.org/OS/Navigation/Career_Center/Career_Center_Information_.aspx

·        General questions regarding the ACOS or membership go to: https://facos.org/OS/Membership/OS/Navigation/Membership/Membership_Overview.aspx?hkey=066d3a62-d9f4-440a-ae59-fd93df633045

·        Student membership go to: https://facos.org/OS/Student_Section/OS/Navigation/Education/Students/Student_Section.aspx?hkey=1fff50ab-8199-404c-8c84-1eef532e045e

·        Resident membership go to: https://facos.org/OS/Education/Residents/OS/Navigation/Education/Residents/Res_Intro.aspx?hkey=08072c34-55a9-436a-9c5f-162decf8441b

For all opportunities provided by ACOS, please visit our website at www.facos.org

ACOS reserves the right to utilize the stated Online Disclaimer Policy or Terms of Use Policy on members who violate these rules:


1.     Don’t attack others or engage in unprofessional or bullying conduct online. Posts and discussions are meant to stimulate conversation, not create contention.

2.     Use caution when discussing services, educational content, or products. Information posted on any platform is available for all to see, and comments are subject to libel, slander, and antitrust laws.

3.     With respect to the antitrust laws, messages shall not be posted if they encourage or facilitate members to arrive at any agreement which either expressly or impliedly leads to price fixing, a boycott of another’s business, or other conduct which is intended to illegally restrict free trade.  Content that encourages or facilitates an agreement about the following subjects are inappropriate: prices/fees, third party payor reimbursement amounts, discounts, or terms or conditions of sale; salaries; supply costs, or other cost data; allocation of customers, markets, or territories; or selection, rejection, or termination of customers or suppliers.

4.     All defamatory, abusive, profane, threatening, offensive, or illegal content is strictly prohibited and will be removed.

5.     Do not post any educational content without reference nor any materials that are protected by copyright without written permission of the copyright owner.

6.     Send your message to the most appropriate platforms.

7.     ACOS has the right to reproduce postings, so do not post anything you would not want the world to see. Any content or information posted/shared on an ACOS platform grants ACOS the nonexclusive worldwide, transferable right and license to display, copy, publish, distribute, transmit, print, and use such information or other material in any way and in any medium, including but not limited to print or electronic form.

8.     Please note carefully all items listed in the disclaimers below.

9.     Do not upload files that contain viruses, corrupted files, or any other software, programs, or material that may damage the operation of another’s computer.

10.  Do not reveal personal health information of any person or any other information that would violate privacy laws, including but not limited to HIPAA or FERPA.

11.   Do not use this site to solicit or conduct business, including the direct or indirect marketing of products or services, and do not provide information, materials, products, or services in exchange for compensation of any kind.

12.  Be clear about who you are (including using your real name) and who you are representing in your online postings, including all financial or other material relationships you may have with regard to the maker or provider of products and services you may review or discuss in ACOS online communities, as well as any other conflicts of interest you may have.


The information provided by the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons (“we,” “us,” or “our”) on our mobile applications/website/social media posts is for general informational purposes only. The information is not meant to serve as a guideline for patient management. Any procedures, medications, or other courses of diagnosis or treatment discussed or suggested should not be used by clinicians without evaluation of their patient’s conditions and possible contraindications and/or dangers in use, review of applicable manufacturer’s product information, and comparison with recommendations of other authorities. All the information within our online services is provided “AS IS,” and we make no representation or warranty of any kind, express or implied, regarding the accuracy, adequacy, validity, reliability, availability, or completeness of any information on our online services.  UNDER NO CIRCUMSTANCE SHALL WE HAVE ANY LIABILITY TO YOU FOR ANY LOSS, DAMAGE OR ADVERSITY OF ANY KIND INCURRED AS A RESULT OF THE USE OF OUR ONLINE SERVICES OR RELIANCE ON ANY INFORMATION PROVIDED UTILIZING THESE SERVICES. YOUR USE OF OUR ONLINE SERVICES AND YOUR RELIANCE ON ANY INFORMATION ON OUR ONLINE PLATFORMS IS SOLELY AT YOUR OWN RISK.


ACOS online services may contain (or you may be sent through our online services) links to other websites or content belonging to or originating from third parties or links to websites and features in banners or other advertising. Such external links are not investigated, monitored, or checked for accuracy, adequacy, validity, reliability, availability, or completeness by ACOS. WE DO NOT WARRANT, ENDORSE, GUARANTEE, OR ASSUME RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ACCURACY OR RELIABILTY OF ANY INFORMATION OFFERED BY THIRD PARTY WEBSITES LINKED THROUGH THE SITE OR ANY WEBSITE OR FEATURED LINK IN ANY BANNER OR OTHER ADVERTISING. WE WILL NOT BE A PARTY TO OR IN ANY WAY RESPONSIBLE FOR MONITORING ANY TRANSACTION BETWEEN YOU AND THIRD-PARTY PROVIDERS OF PRODUCTS, EDUCATION, OR SERVICES.


The ACOS online services are intended for engagement and discussion. The information provided is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for professional medical or legal advice or consultation with healthcare or legal professionals. The site cannot and does not contain medical/health or legal advice.

Accordingly, before taking any action based upon such information, we encourage you to consult with the appropriate professionals. THE USE OR RELIANCE OF ANY INFORMATION CONTAINED ON OUR ONLINE PLATFORMS IS SOLELY AT YOUR OWN RISK. 

An educational activity may contain discussion of agents that are not approved for use by the FDA and/or investigation uses of agents that are approved by the FDA.  The authors of the educational activities do not recommend the use of any agent outside its labeled indications.


The ACOS online sites may contain testimonials by users of our educational content and services or users attending our events. These testimonials reflect real-life experiences and opinions of such users. However, the experiences are personal to those users, and may not necessarily be representative of all users of our products, content, and/or services.

The testimonials on these sites are submitted in various forms such as text, email, audio and/or video, and are not necessarily reviewed by ACOS before being posted. They appear on the site verbatim as given by the users, except for, if identified prior to posting, the correction of grammar or typing errors. Some testimonials may have been shortened for the sake of brevity where the full testimonial contained extraneous information not relevant to the general public.

The views and opinions contained in the testimonials belong solely to the individual user and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the ACOS. Users providing testimonials are not paid or otherwise compensated for their testimonials. 


Each user of any ACOS online platform hereby agrees to indemnify and hold harmless ACOS, its officers, directors, employees, agents, successors and assigns from and against any and all third party liability, actions, demands, losses, damages, (including, without limitation, direct, indirect, actual, general, incidental, special, lost profits, or consequential), injuries, costs, expenses (including attorney fees and court costs), or claims of any and every kind whatsoever, paid, incurred, or suffered by, or asserted against, ACOS, its officers, directors, employees, agents, successors, and assigns, arising out of, or associated in any manner with the user’s violation of any term of these rules.


ACOS does not actively monitor its online sites for violations of these rules. Should any user desire to report inappropriate content or violations of these rules by any use on any ACOS site, please contact Dr. Valerie Sheridan, CEO (vsheridan@facos.org).

ACOS, for any reason (including a user’s violation of any provision of the above rules), may immediately and without notice suspend or terminate a user’s ability to access and use any ACOS online sites. 

ACOS’ privacy policy is located here:  https://www.facos.org/OS/Privacy_Policy/OS/Navigation/Privacy_Policy.aspx?hkey=f83e9aaa-0d3e-45d7-b17c-f3ab805fb05e

ACOS Data Privacy policy                                                                                                Effective date: 08/15/2018


This Notice explains how the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons, including the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons Trust Fund (“ACOS”, “we”, or “us”) collects and processes your Personal Data. Each time you use our Site, the current version of this Notice will apply. Accordingly, whenever you use our Site, you should check the date of this Notice (which appears at the top) and review any changes since the last version. This Notice is applicable only to Site visitors, registered users, and other users of our Site located in the European Union (“EU”) who use our Site or services in connection with ACOS’s offering of goods or services in the EU.

“Personal Data” is any information that enables us to identify you, directly or indirectly, by reference to an identifier such as your name, identification number, location data, online identifier or one or more factors specific to your physical, physiological, genetic, mental, economic, cultural or social identity.

By visiting www.facos.org or related properties, (together the “Site”), you acknowledge that you have read and understood the processes and policies referred to in this Notice.

Who we are

For the purposes of the General Data Protection Regulation 2016/679 (the “GDPR”), the Data Controller is the American College of Osteopathic Surgeons registered in Virginia USA with a registered address at 1680 Duke Street, Suite 500, Alexandria, VA 22314.  Our Chief Executive Officer, Linda Taliaferro, is responsible for overseeing questions in relation to this Notice for the purposes of the GDPR.

How to contact us

If you have any questions or concerns about this Notice, please contact us using info@facos.org.  Alternatively, you can contact us by phone at (703) 684-0416, or by mail to 1680 Duke Street, Suite 500, Alexandria, VA 22314.

How we collect personal data

Personal Data that you give us

We may collect and process the following Personal Data:

·         Contact information, which you provide when corresponding with us by phone, e-mail or otherwise. This includes information you provide when you participate in discussion boards or other social media functions on our Site and when you report a problem with our Site. The information you give us may include your name, address, e-mail address, phone number, financial information and/or credit card information.

·         Membership information, including your name, contact details such as address, phone number and email address (business or personal), age, job title, government identification numbers (e.g. social security number, passport number etc.), year of admission and any other information related to your membership. Membership information may be provided by you during the registration process, or by your employer on your behalf.

·         Dues payment information, including financial information such as credit/debit card and account numbers used to register or renew your membership.

·         Purchase information, relating to purchases made by members and non-members of delegate passes and event participation, books, reports, journals or newsletter subscriptions either in-person or via our Site. Purchase information will include financial information as well as information concerning the content and time of the purchase.

·         Disciplinary information, relating to ethics/disciplinary programs in which complaints against members are adjudicated, with the result being possible suspension/expulsion from membership. This may include extensive information about a member's business or professional activities, including employment information, and similar information relating to other individuals involved in the investigation, though would usually not include financial information.

·         Certification information, relating to certification programs, in which members are granted certification if they meet specified educational/employment experience requirements and/or pass an exam. This may include extensive information about the experience/performance of those certified or accredited. Where the certification concerns institutions or businesses, this may include similar information identifying employees and other members of staff including volunteers.

·         Residency training information, relating to surgical residency training programs, in which members and non-members are granted approvals if they meet specified education/employment experience requirements and/or satisfy training requirements.

Personal data we collect from you

With regard to each of your visits to the Site we will automatically collect the following information:

·         Technical information, including the Internet protocol (IP) address used to connect your computer or device to the Internet, browser type and version, time zone setting, browser plug-in types and versions, operating system and platform;

·         Information about your visit, including pages you viewed or searched for, page response times, download errors, length of visits to certain pages, page interaction information (such as scrolling, clicks, and mouse-overs), methods used to browse away from the page, and any phone number used to call our customer service number; and

·         Location information

Personal Data we collect from others

We may receive information about you from publicly available and third-party databases or services that provide information about business people that we believe will help us identify provide products and services that may be of interest to you. We will obtain your consent before contacting you if required by the law of the country in which you are located.

Non-Personal Data

We collect information that is sent to us automatically by your web browser and we may use this information to generate aggregate statistics about visitors to our Site, including, without limitation:

·         IP addresses

·         Browser type and plug-in details

·         Device type (e.g., desktop, laptop, tablet, phone, etc.)

·         Operating system

·         Local time zone

We may use non-Personal Data for various business purposes such as providing customer service, fraud prevention, market research, and improving our Site. Please check your web browser if you want to learn what information your browser sends or how to change your settings.

How we use your Personal Data

We will only process your Personal Data, including sharing it with third parties, where (1) you have provided your consent which can be withdrawn at any time, (2) the processing is necessary for the performance of a contract to which you are a party, (3) we are required by law, (4) processing is required to protect your vital interests or those of another person, or (5) processing is necessary for the purposes of our legitimate interests, except where such interests are overridden by your rights and interests.

Personal Data that you give us

We may use Personal Data that you provide directly to us for the following purposes:

·         to carry out our obligations arising from your membership, or any other contract entered into between you and us and to provide you with the information, products and membership services that you request from us;

·         to organize events that you have purchased or registered for, and to provide you with information, and other materials, relating to the content of the event, the speakers, sponsors and other attendees;

·         to provide our newsletter and other publications to our members;

·         to respond to your questions and provide related membership services;

·         to provide you with information about other events, products and services we offer that are similar to those that you have already purchased, provided you have not opted-out of receiving that information;

·         to provide you, or permit selected third parties to provide you, with information about events, products or services we feel may interest you, provided you have given your consent;

·         to transfer your information as part of a merger or sale of the business;

·         to notify you about changes to our membership service; and

·         to ensure that content from our Site is presented most effectively for you and your computer.

Information we collect about you

We will use Personal Data that we have collected about your use of our Site:

·         to administer our Site and for internal operations, including troubleshooting, data analysis, testing, research, statistical and survey purposes;

·         to improve our Site to ensure that content is presented most effectively for you and your computer;

·         as part of our efforts to keep our Site safe and secure;

·         to measure or understand the effectiveness of advertising we serve to you and others, and to deliver relevant advertising to you; and

·         to make suggestions and recommendations to you and other users of our Site about goods or services that may interest you or them.

Personal Data we receive from other sources

We will combine this information with information you give to us and information we collect about you. We will use this information and the combined Personal Data for the purposes set out above (depending on the types of information we receive).

When we share and who can access your Personal Data

We may share your Personal Data for the purposes described in this Notice with:

·         a member of our group

·         partners, suppliers and sub-contractors, for the performance of obligations arising from your membership, or any other contract we enter into with them or you or to provide you with the information, products and membership services that you request from us

·         analytics and search engine providers that assist us in the improvement and optimization of our Site

·         trusted third-party companies and individuals to help us provide, analyze, and improve the Site and our membership services (including but not limited to data storage, maintenance services, database management, web analytics and payment processing)

·         in the event that we sell or buy any business or assets, in which case we will disclose your Personal Data to the prospective seller or buyer of such business or assets

·         if ACOS or substantially all of its assets are acquired by a third party, in which case Personal Data held by it about its customers will be one of the transferred assets.

We will only transfer your Personal Data to trusted third-parties who provide sufficient guarantees in respect of the technical and organizational security measures governing the processing to be carried out and who can demonstrate a commitment to compliance with those measures.

Selling your Personal Data

We will never sell your Personal Data to third parties without your opt-in consent.


Although we use security measures to help protect your Personal Data against loss, misuse or unauthorized disclosure, we cannot guarantee the security of information transmitted to us over the internet.  All information you provide to us is stored on secure servers.  Any payment transactions will be encrypted using SSL technology.

Transfer of Personal Data outside of the European Economic Area (“EEA”) and International Users

We are headquartered in the United States. Your Personal Data may be accessed by us or transferred to us in the United States or to our affiliates, partners, merchants, or service providers who are located worldwide. If we transfer your data to an entity in a country outside of the EEA, we will ensure the appropriate safeguards are in place to protect your personal data.  If you are visiting our Site from outside the United States, be aware that your information may be transferred to, stored, and processed in the United States where our servers are located, and our central database is operated.

How Long we Store your Personal Data

We will store your Personal Data, in a form which permits us to identify you, for no longer than is necessary for the purpose for which the Personal Data is processed. We may retain and use your Personal Data as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements and rights, or if it is not technically reasonably feasible to remove it.

Member Data Retention

We will retain information about our members for as long as the membership account is active. If you wish to cancel your account or request that we no longer use your information to provide you service, contact us at info@facos.org. We will retain and use your information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, and enforce our agreements.

Non-Member Data Retention

We collect certain categories of Personal Data about non-members, described in further detail above.  The storage period for this data is as follows:

·         Contact information: We retain this information indefinitely for archiving and recordkeeping purposes, as well as to track historical trends for our site and organization, unless you specifically request that we delete your Personal Data as described below.

·         Purchase information: We retain this information indefinitely for archiving and recordkeeping purposes, as well as to track historical trends for our site and organization, unless you specifically request that we delete your Personal Data as described below.

·         Residency training information: We retain this information indefinitely for archiving and recordkeeping purposes, as well as to track historical trends for our site and organization, unless you specifically request that we delete your Personal Data as described below.

·         Technical information, information about your visit to our Site, and location information: We retain this information indefinitely for archiving and recordkeeping purposes, as well as to track historical trends for our site and organization, unless you specifically request that we delete your Personal Data as described below.

Where we store your personal data

The Personal Data that you provide to us is generally stored on servers located in the United States. If you are located in another jurisdiction, you should be aware that once your Personal Data is submitted through our Site, it will be transferred to our servers in the United States and that the United States currently does not have uniform data protection laws in place.


ACOS uses cookies for session management, and to enable saving your username and passwords for system login. We do not use cookies to track user activity. You have a variety of tools to control cookies including browser controls to clock and delete cookies.

Links to Third Party Sites and Services

Our Sites may contain links to third-party websites, applications and services not operated by us. These links are provided as a service and do not imply any endorsement by us of the activities or content of these sites, applications or services nor any association with their operators. Company is not responsible for the privacy policies or practices of any third party including websites or services directly linked to our Service. We encourage you to review the privacy policies of any third-party site that you link from our Service.

Your rights


You can request an electronic copy of your personal data contained within our system.  Requests should be made by contacting us at info@facos.org.  In order to comply with your request, we may ask you to verify your identity.


If any of the information that we have about you is incorrect or incomplete, you may correct this information by visiting your ACOS Profile or contacting us at info@facos.org


You may ask us to delete or remove your Personal Data.  Requests should be made to info@facos.org.  We will evaluate your request in light of the applicable law.  In some situations, deletion of certain Personal Data may mean that it is no longer possible for you to gain access to certain parts of our site or retain access to membership activities.

Restrict or Object to the Use of Your Data

You may ask us to restrict or block the processing of your Personal Data in certain circumstances.  Requests should be made by e-mailing us at info@facos.orgAdditionally, if you prefer not to receive marketing messages from us, please let us know by clicking on the unsubscribe link within any marketing message that you receive or by sending a message to us at info@facos.org.

Data Portability

You have the right to obtain your Personal Data from us that is contained in our system or ask us to transfer your data to another organization, in certain circumstances.  Requests for your data should be made by e-mailing us at info@facos.org.

Withdraw Consent

If we rely on your consent to process your Personal Data, you have the right to withdraw that consent at any time. This will not affect the lawfulness of processing based on your prior consent. Requests should be made by e-mailing us at info@facos.org.

Lodge a Complaint

If you have a concern about our privacy practices, including the way we have handled your Personal Data, you can report it to the data protection authority that is authorized to hear those concerns.  The relevant authority is the data protection authority in your country of residence, the country where you work, or the country in which the alleged unlawful use of your Personal Data occurred.

Changes to this Notice

If we make any material changes to this Notice or the way we use, share or collect personal Data, we will notify you by revising the “Effective Date” at the top of this Notice, prominently posting an announcement of the changes on our Site, or sending an email to the email address you most recently provided us (unless we do not have such an email address) prior to the new policy taking effect.

Any changes we make to this Notice in the future will be posted on this page and, where appropriate, notification sent to you by e-mail. Please check back frequently to see any updates or changes to this Notice.