Stepping Up to the Mic
ACR Council will vote on more than 35 critical resolutions at AMCLC 2012.
The ACR Council will consider more than 35 resolutions related to policy, bylaws, practice guidelines, and technical standards at the 89th AMCLC, held April 21-25, 2012, in Washington, D.C.
As the College's representative body, the Council consists of approximately 325 councilors or councilors-at-large who are elected or appointed by the ACR state chapters, approved subspecialty societies, or the ACR speaker to come to Washington annually and take part in the AMCLC. One of the chief responsibilities of the ACR Council is the consideration of resolutions. Similar to how the U.S. Congress considers bills, the ACR Council considers resolutions that direct the College to take certain positions on various policy and organizational issues. Any member of the College can testify on the merits of a resolution during the open reference committee hearings held on Monday, April 23, 2012. The reference committees, made up of individual councilors selected in advance by the speaker, listen to the debate and consider what they hear in a closed session held that afternoon and evening. The committees then produce a report of recommended actions back to the Council the following morning for final debate and vote. Much like Congress, the ACR Council utilizes parliamentary procedure to help ensure a fair and efficient process.
Here's a preview of the AMCLC 2012 resolutions, which will be sure to shape the future of the College.
The Council will consider ten policy resolutions. A short summary of each policy resolution is below:
• Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) Training. The resolution calls on the ACR to provide both models and educational materials for medical physicists, diagnostic radiologists, radiation oncologists, and nuclear medicine physicians who provide RSO services.
• Creation of a Young and Early Career Physician Section. The resolution would establish a new Young and Early Career Physician Section (defined as members 40 or younger or within the first eight years of practice following residency and fellowship training). The section would be led by an executive committee. Further, it would create two Council seats for the chair and vice chair of the section. The section would also work to increase chapter young and early career member involvement and work with the ACR Commission on Membership and Communications to increase membership of this demographic.
• Implementation of the Clinical Practice of Interventional Radiology (IR) and Interventional Neuroradiology (INR). The resolution would allow the ACR to work with the Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR) and the Society of Neurointerventional Surgery (ISNS) to promote the growth and sustainability of the IR and INR clinical services within the practice of radiology. It would create a task force to define and prioritize the business needs of IR and INR clinical practices and develop implementation and marketing tactics to optimize clinical practices within radiology. The resolution also calls for the Radiology Leadership Institute to consider the necessity of a longitudinal patient care model for IR and INR in designing curriculum and to include the appropriate course content. The resolution would also commit the ACR to develop an educational campaign, working with SIR and SNIS to promote and demonstrate the value of IR and INR clinical practices to patients, physicians, allied health providers, radiology practices, public and third-party practices, and health-care organization leaders. Finally, the resolution calls on the ACR, working with SIR and SNIS, to disseminate the existing support tools that facilitate the implementation of optimal IR and INR clinical practices to radiology practices.
• Definition of a Qualified Medical Physicist. The resolution would change some of the titles in the current definition of "Medical Physicist" to conform existing ABR certification nomenclature.
Much like Congress, the ACR Council utilizes parliamentary procedure to help ensure a fair and efficient process.
• Honoring of Texas Radiological Society on Their Centennial Meeting. The resolution would honor the Texas Radiological Society on their 100th annual meeting to be held in Houston, on April 5-7, 2013.
• Collaborative and Conflicting Society Guidelines. The resolution would establish that the ACR remove from a collaborative guideline the name of any collaborating society that produces an independent guideline (subsequent to the product of the collaborative ACR guideline) or has produced an independent guideline that differs from or conflicts with the ACR collaborative guideline.
• Distribution of Imaging Reports. The Illinois Radiological Society is sponsoring a resolution that would recommend that final imaging reports should be available to and/or sent directly to the patient in the interest of added value and personalized medicine.
• Extension of the ACR-ACS-CAP-SSO Practice Guideline for the Management of Ductal Carcinoma In-Situ of the Breast (DCIS) and the Extension of the ACR-ACS-CAP-SSO Practice Guideline for Breast Conservation Therapy in the Management of Invasive Breast Carcinoma. The resolution would delay the reconsideration of these existing practice guidelines for an additional year while a new ACR Practice Guideline for the Imaging Management of DCIS and Invasive Breast Carcinoma is presented for consideration at the AMCLC in 2013.
• Sunset the ACR Technical Standard for the Performance of Brachytherapy Physics: Intravascular Applications Using Catheter-Based Systems (IVBT) and the ACR Practice Guideline for the Performance of Coronary Vascular Brachytherapy. These two brachytherapy procedures are recommended for sunsetting, which refers to the expiration of a practice guideline or technical standard.
Practice Guidelines and Technical Standards
Of more than 35 resolutions submitted prior to the January 23, 2012 deadline, 25 are revised or new practice guidelines and technical standards. Among those, four relate to medical physics, two are specific to radiation oncology, two to CT, five to MRI, three to nuclear medicine, four to ultrasound, two to general radiology, and three to interventional radiology. The listing of all the practice guidelines and technical standards are available online on the AMCLC portal at http://amclc.acr.org.
The Council will also consider an amendment to the bylaws necessitated by a Council policy at the AMCLC 2011. The bylaws amendment would specify that the speaker and vice speaker are eligible to serve in all positions available to elected members of the Council Steering Committee.
The Council also considers policies up for sunset consideration. As noted in the ACR Bylaws, all policies are reconsidered at least every ten years. Policies up for sunset review may be sunset, renewed, or renewed as amended. All renewed policies are valid for an additional ten years unless otherwise modified by the Council.
All resolutions, reference committee assignments, and a list of councilors by state are available on the AMCLC portal at http://amclc.acr.org. If you have concerns or issues with any proposed resolutions, feel free to contact your councilor to express your opinion. They are your representatives. If you need assistance finding your councilor(s), please contact ACR Council Services at 800-227-5463 ext. 4975.
By Brad Short