CSC Liaisons, Chapter Leadership, and Member Engagement
If you've ever wondered how you and your practice are represented within the College, here's a primer.
One of the primary roles of Council Steering Committee member is to serve as a liaison to the chapters of the ACR.
Each of the committee's 22 members is assigned to several chapters and tasked with engaging the leadership of those chapters to identify the challenges they are facing, provide information about the role of the CSC and councilors, and share resources available from the College. Additionally, CSC members provide guidance about how to submit resolutions and provide resources to help optimize participation before, during, and after the annual council meeting.
Beginning a Dialogue with Chapter Leaders
CSC members often have many years of leadership experience in their radiology group practice, on the council, and within their chapter leadership. They also have a variety of resources to share, including guidance on how to write a resolution (http://bit.ly/ResolutionWriting), information about upcoming review of practice guidelines and technical standards, a list of the many benefits of membership, information about parliamentary procedure (http://bit.ly/ParliamentaryProcedure), and other resources for chapter leaders.
Outreach by the CSC can take many forms, with members reaching out by phone, sending out e-mails, and coordinating face-to-face at meetings. While CSC members contact chapter leaders at least twice per year, the goal is to facilitate two-way communication and establish the CSC liaison as a resource for chapter leaders and their councilors throughout the year. To start the dialogue with the chapter leaders, the CSC has developed specific questions that allow leadership and staff to identify chapter-specific issues as well as potential trends across multiple chapters. The CSC liaison sends requests for information back to ACR staff or commission members and may connect chapter leaders with others for networking and problem-solving.
Call Logs and Closing the Loop
As CSC liaisons engage with chapter leaders, they are collecting information to share the ACR leadership and staff. ACR staff is able to route issues internally and provide follow-up information to address chapter needs. Each year, the CSC reviews call logs to help inform its communications and interactions with chapter leaders. In addition, the CSC uses this information to identify issues that may become policy resolutions, to identify topics that may be addressed in open-microphone sessions, or flag items that merit further discussion among the ACR leadership.
The Council, A Representative Body
The 10 elected and 12 appointed councilors serving on the CSC represent the full council (over 340 members strong) in between council meetings and represent the diversity of the College membership, in terms of geography, practice type, subspecialty, gender, and ethnicity. The council provides representation for the full spectrum of the College's membership, with councilors representing all 54 chapters, the Resident and Fellow Section (RFS), the Young and Early Career Physician Section (YPS), military branches, governmental agencies, and 23 subspecialty societies. For every 100 members of a chapter, or part thereof, there is one councilor and one alternate councilor to represent its members at the AMCLC. As a member of an ACR chapter, you can and should engage your representatives to identify the issues you are facing and provide feedback and ideas about ACR policy and activities. Attend one of the chapter meetings to get to know the leaders and councilors and discuss the chapter activities.
Your Guide to Council Actions and Policy
The council maintains a record of its actions, the ACR Digest of Council Actions, which includes all resolutions passed by the ACR Council over the past 10 years, as well as a historic chronology of actions. This digest is published annually and is available on the ACR website (http://bit.ly/CouncilActions). It also provides a compendium of new and revised practice guidelines and technical standards approved by the council during the past 10 years. The digest is a resource for all professional and public policy statements that have been approved as resolutions by the council and is a reference for all members. Additional reference documents in the digest include the bylawys and historical council actions from the 1970s to the present.
The policies, practice guidelines and technical standards, and bylaws resolutions considered each year by the council affect the practice and profession of radiology in direct and indirect ways. Every member of the ACR is notified via e-mail several times per year to comment directly on the 30 to 40 practice guidelines and technical standards typically considered each year. In addition, members should feel free to contact ACR councilors from their state, specialty society, the RFS, the YPS, or the military branches to offer ideas for policy resolutions. Each spring, the College posts the proposed policies and new and revised guidelines for review prior to the annual council meeting on the AMCLC website at www.amclc.org. ACR members are encouraged to visit the updated AMCLC website, Facebook, and Twitter all year long and engage your councilors on ideas and concerns that will impact the practice of radiology.
By Kimberly E. Applegate, MD, MS, FACR
Speaker of the Council