By Carlos Vasquez, RT(R), CRA, FAHRA, FACHE
April 2013—Spring is a season associated with renewal, rejuvenation, and most commonly cleaning. Coincidentally the AHRA board dedicates a great portion of its spring meeting to rejuvenating our strategic plan and planting the seeds for programs and initiatives that we believe correspond with the needs and challenges facing our members.
The AHRA Board of Directors held its spring meeting last month in Chicago. With a hefty agenda we went right to work, discussing and sharing ideas with the objectives of strengthening membership growth, developing educational tools to assist our members with operational challenges, and examining the strategic plan as the foundation of our sustainability. Some of the highlights of the board meeting included:
- The introduction and approval of a military membership program. We are proud to be initiating this program with the Air Force and look forward to extending this program to all the branches of our armed forces. This program is of particular importance to AHRA as it’s designed to assist medical imaging specialists who are transitioning to the civilian healthcare environment by providing mentorship, networking, and all of our resources to make this a successful transition.
- We approved the development of an industry standard labor productivity benchmark to serve current and next generation imaging administrators. We are acutely aware that labor is the largest manageable expense and is critical to quality and patient satisfaction outcomes. Therefore, we are crafting the project as a foundation for industry wide acceptance to be used to support deployment of staff across modalities and for budget justification in the C-suite.
- We are increasing AHRA’s level of involvement in advocacy. We approved support for the “Are You Dense?” advocacy effort, which promotes education around dense breast tissue and its significance for the early detection of breast cancer. We believe the goals of this advocacy effort are worthy of our support and are relevant to our members. The goals of “Are You Dense?” are: Educate the public about dense breast tissue; improve the condition of women diagnosed with breast cancer by raising awareness about the physical, mental, and spiritual aspects of living with the disease; advocate changes to public policy and breast cancer detection guidelines; and support new and existing research for the early detection of breast cancer for women with dense breast tissue.
The AHRA Education Foundation’s Expanding Excellence Campaign has reached 80% of its $3 million goal, and we are cautiously excited that we will reach the goal when we meet in Minneapolis for our Annual Meeting in July.
It takes an army of volunteers to put our association’s strategic plan into action, and we are proud to count on all of you when AHRA needs you, and to work collaboratively on positioning AHRA as a resource and catalyst for the development of professional leadership in medical imaging management.
May you have a spring renewal, a rejuvenating spring break, and a refueling of your learning tank while attending the Spring Conference in LA.
Carlos Vasquez, RT(R), CRA, FAHRA, FACHE is president of the 2012-2013 AHRA Board of Directors. He is the division director of radiology services at Franciscan-St. Elizabeth Health in Lafayette, IN and can be reached at Carlos.firstname.lastname@example.org.