ACR 2017 CEO and BOC Chair Reports

acr 2017 brink

On Sunday, James A. Brink, MD, FACR, and William T. Thorwarth Jr., MD, FACR, reported on the state of the ACR from the BOC chair’s perspective and the CEO’s perspective, respectively.

Both Brink and Thorwarth described the innovations and accomplishments that enhance the value of the society to its members as well as the radiology profession. The ACR leaders outlined specific key objectives based the ACR strategic plan, which was approved by the BOC in 2014.

One of the ACR strategic plan’s themes is centered on health care payment policies and practice models. Specifically, the plan states that the ACR will help “existing and new practice and payment models recognize the value delivered by radiology.” To inform and influence health care policy, noted both Brink and Thorwarth, the ACR Foundation has revised its focus to concentrate on health policy research, including its support of the Harvey L. Neiman Health Policy Institute.

Another strategic plan theme is centered on Innovation and Research. Thorwarth described the formation of the ACR Innovation Fund, which was designed to “to support untested, uncommon, and distinctive ideas and activities that lead to groundbreaking efforts that align with and support the goals and objectives of the ACR strategic plan.” The funding for these projects is up to $100,000 for a maximum of one year. So far, two cycles of applications have occurred, and 11 proposals from ACR commissions, committees, and staff have been approved.

In support of game-changing technological innovation in machine learning, Brink announced the formation of the Data Science Institute. Areas of focus for the institute include researching use cases, setting standards, and evaluating diagnostic performance. “If we don’t take control and guide [AI research and implementation], it may very well take control of us,” Brink said.

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