by Sean Ruck
, Contributing Editor | May 30, 2017
From the May 2017 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
The SIIM annual meeting will take place this year in Pittsburgh from June 1-3.
As always, HealthCare Business News reached out to SIIM leadership to help spread the word about what the Society has been up to over the course of the past year. With SIIM chairs serving two-year terms, we had the somewhat unique opportunity to speak with Chair Paul Nagy as he enters his second year in that role to see how his focus for the first year worked out and what’s slated for his second.
HCB News: Let’s talk about what your initiatives are as chair for the coming year.
We have 15 percent of our membership engaged in committees. That’s more than 235 people serving in a voluntary capacity in some way. We’re eagerly creating new committees in order to fit more people into roles and give members more opportunities to be involved.
HCB News: What are some of the new committees and what’s the drive behind them?
Opportunities generally come up over discussions at our annual meeting. I look for a person wanting to make a difference and looking for an opportunity to lead a diverse group. A society works best when it’s bringing together people and ideas. One such committee we’re excited about and newly created is called the Global Ambassadors Group. We’ve created this committee to work with nonprofit organizations and it’s a way for our SIIM members to work and mentor people in the developing world to better deliver imaging services for patients.
According to the WHO, half the world is still not getting adequate access to radiology services. We have an opportunity to try out new ideas and even leapfrog some technologies like bypassing landlines and going directly to wireless, or leveraging new DICOMWeb interoperability standards. We were thrilled to see many of our members apply to be a SIIM ambassador. I am happy to report that the program is off the ground and we are sending our first two ambassadors to Laos and Nicaragua.
HCB News: How did this committee come about?
We had the leadership of RAD-AID reach out to us, helping us identify the need and offering a partnership. We discussed it at a board meeting with senior leaders and found a group in our membership with the experience and interest to take this program forward. We are starting by sponsoring two trips a year and hope to ramp up. Our ambassadors start by mentoring offsite to build relationships and better determine what the needs will be during a visit. After they do visit, they will continue to advise the group and we support the local imaging informatics professionals.