By Michael Peters, CSSBB, MBA, RT(R)(T)
Having started out my career in radiology 22 years ago as a radiologic technologist and radiation therapist, I have seen the field change dramatically with regards to technology, regulatory standards, and reimbursement. With all these changes taking place, being a member of the AHRA provides not only educational resources, but a direct connection with other imaging professionals to share and collaborate with during these challenging times.
The most memorable AHRA Annual Meeting I have attended was in 2006 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Beyond the glitz and glamor of the strip, this conference specifically provided me with the knowledge and resources to expand my management experience. Up to that point in time, the majority of my management experience was in radiation oncology, but I knew that times were changing and I would have to adapt as well. The 2006 Annual Meeting gave me the opportunity to engage with management professionals who were willing and able to provide the guidance I needed as I prepared to take on additional duties in PET/CT and women’s imaging. The content of the meeting was diverse, providing legal, ethical, operational, and staffing related topics, which allowed for cross-functional learning. Although over my career I had worked directly with various imaging service lines as part of integrated cancer services, I never had an in depth understanding of the amount of time and commitment that it took to support delivery of services. I left that meeting with personal and educational guidance that has fostered my career growth since then.
To fast forward nine years and one Annual Meeting since then, I have had the opportunity to manage and open two PET/CT centers and directly supervise a women’s breast imaging center. I look forward to attending this year’s conference in Las Vegas for the educational content as well the opportunity to engage with other colleagues and share the experiences I have gained over the past five years as an independent consultant, providing operational best practices and patient engagement strategies within numerous imaging and cancer related service lines.
As an AHRA member, I find the organization, the Annual Meetings, and the other members are invaluable resources that every current or aspiring imaging professional should take a direct part in.
Michael Peters, CSSBB, MBA, RT(R)(T) is the CEO/principal consultant at US Cancer Specialist, LLC in Tarpon Springs, FL. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.