On Solid Ground
The College maintains a strong position during a tough financial year.
As the economy slowly but surely climbs its way to higher ground, the College's finances have also steadily improved. According to the 2009-2010 financial report from ACR Secretary-Treasurer Anne C. Roberts, M.D., FACR, in Fiscal Year 2010, the College maintained a strong financial position.
As of June 30, 2010, the ACR had assets of $108.6 million and liabilities of $45.6 million, with net assets of $63 million. Net assets increased overall by $10 million in Fiscal Year 2010, with a positive bottom line from operations and investment earnings for the year. This surplus stemmed primarily from accreditation revenues, as it was a strong year for accreditation renewals in CT, PET, MRI, and nuclear medicine.
The ACR's long-term investment portfolio also produced an improved annual return for Fiscal Year 2010 of 14.6 percent. This performance exceeded the benchmark return of 12.37 percent for the year. The portfolio remains invested in a number of equity and fixed-income mutual funds with an allocation to stocks and bonds that is in line with the long-term objectives of capital appreciation.
To get a more in-depth view of the College's finances, the ACR Bulletin asked Roberts to elaborate on performance during the past fiscal year, as well as what's to come.
“We will continue to ensure that our members get value over and beyond what they pay for College membership.” — Anne C. Roberts, M.D., FACR
Bulletin: How has the College fared during the current economy?
Roberts: The College's finances are doing well. ACR CEO Harvey L. Neiman, M.D., FACR, and all the staff have been working to keep expenses down as much as possible and have succeeded admirably. Since the stock market has improved in the last year, our long-term investments are in a much better position. Through the leadership of Dr. Neiman and Ken Korotky, ACR's chief financial officer, the College is in a good position, but we continue to watch our expenses and our income carefully.
Bulletin: How will the new health-care reform act affect the ACR's finances?
Roberts: I don't think we know yet. There will certainly be costs associated with our Capitol Hill efforts. We may have a better idea when the new session of Congress begins this month.
Bulletin: How will the new accreditation mandates affect the College's finances?
Roberts: The CMS has designated three organizations for radiology accreditation for compliance with the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008. One is the ACR, which has the most well-developed accreditation system. The College's accreditation looks at all the aspects of a radiology practice, including the images that are obtained.
The other two entities are the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) and The Joint Commission (TJC). The IAC accreditation process is very similar to the ACR model, whereas the TJC process is different. TJC does not have the emphasis on the imaging that one finds with the ACR and IAC processes. The cost of the TJC process may be less for some centers compared to the ACR. However, we have built a reputation over a number of years as having an outstanding program, and we know that we offer the best accreditation program for radiology practices and for the public.
Bulletin: How do the College's results for Fiscal Year 2010 compare to other medical societies?
Roberts: It's a challenge to compare the ACR to other medical societies, as we have a few very unique business lines, such as our own contract research organization, Image Metrix™. That being said, our 2012 results exceeded our budgeted expectations. We experienced a positive net from operations of $5.3 million plus an additional $4.7 million from long-term investments. Our reserve balance remains in line with industry averages as well.
Bulletin: Are there any new fiscal benefits that members can expect for the next year?
Roberts: At this time, we do not have anything concrete planned. We will continue to ensure that our members get value over and beyond what they pay for College membership.
Bulletin: What are some of the ACR's fiscal goals during Fiscal Year 2011?
Roberts: The College's most important goal is to continue to support our members and their practices. This will require ACR expenditures to fund political advocacy, standards, accreditation, education, and outreach. It's important that we control our expenses as much as possible so that there are funds available for all of these efforts.
By Leah Lakins