By Ed Yoder, MBA, MHA, RT(R), CRA, FAHRA
September 2013—Well, here we are, my first Link article as AHRA President! I’d like to welcome you all to the world of Ed, where we have fun, keep things light hearted, laughter is allowed, and we’ll talk a little rock’n’roll every now and then. If you take yourself too seriously, then you won’t like my world because it’s all about looking at things in a comic light and trying hard to find things to laugh about. I am a very tightly wrapped individual, and the best way to keep from having a stroke is to laugh and have fun, so that’s what I do!
Wasn’t it a great family reunion at the 2013 Annual Meeting in Minnesota? I had a great time meeting a lot of old friends and many new ones. We had the best attendance of first time attendees in the history of AHRA! It is awesome to have new people seeing the value of networking, connections, education, and fun at AHRA Annual Meetings! Bill Johnson, the fearless leader of the Annual Meeting Design Team, said, “the beauty of the Annual Meeting is in the value that is driven to the attendees: networking, camaraderie, and continuing education coupled with a special opportunity to come together as peers and reenergize and reignite the passion that we have for our profession!” That is what it’s all about! A great time was had by all in attendance, and we are looking forward to BIG things in the nation’s capital next August.
On the Saturday before the Annual Meeting, we had a board meeting. Many things were discussed, and one of them was a retooling of the strategic plan. Several members have brought up the fact that some recent healthcare changes were not mentioned. The board agreed we need to go back and revamp the strategic plan, a process we will begin at the next board meeting in early November.
We also discussed our benchmarking initiative. As I mentioned in my speech at the Annual Meeting closing ceremony, we have launched a new project to develop staffing benchmarks for the technical component of the most common diagnostic radiology exams performed by hospital facilities. We are involving other industry organizations to facilitate acceptance of these benchmarks. Our goal is to equip our members with the information and tools that they need to justify their staffing levels within their organizations. We are working with David Cowan on this project. David has extensive experience in productivity and process improvement and is a professor at Georgia Tech. We will be providing more information as the project gets fully underway.
Don’t forget our Fall Conference is in Baltimore this year at the Sheraton Inner Harbor. There are a lot of great things on the schedule such as: understanding just culture, a lean six sigma approach to patient satisfaction, clinical leadership development, risk management in radiology, coding and reimbursement, implementing a comprehensive dose management program, US healthcare industry trends and assumptions, and much more. Make plans to attend because Fall Conference Design Team Chair Mark Feeley and his team have put together a fantastic program that I am personally very excited about. See Mark’s article in this issue for more details.
I look forward to continuing to let you know what the board is doing and how we are advancing the association and bringing you more value as a member. Before I close, though, I have to talk some rock’n’roll. Stress relief is an important task that we must all perform, and the way I do it is listening to loud music every day on the way home from work. I am going to wrap up every article with a tune, or tunes that take me to another place. I hope this will help you destress as well.
One of my favorite songs to blast through the speakers has got to be “Urgent” by Foreigner. This bombastic, toe tapping number comes off of their “4” album. Not only is the beat infectious, but Lou Gramm has one of the most powerful, under rated voices in rock’n’roll. The sax solo is outstanding; Junior Walker lays down one of the most memorable sax lines I have ever heard. It is just awesome and can only be listened to with the volume turned all the way up! Rock on my friends – I’ll see you on the freeway on the ride home with the volume up!
Ed Yoder, MBA, MHA, RT(R), CRA, FAHRA is president of the 2013-2014 AHRA Board of Directors. He is the director of imaging services at Lexington Medical Center in West Columbia, SC and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.