Past President's Letter

ISR President’s column

October 2015

This summer the ISR executive committee (ex com) met in Reston, Virginia.  The goal of this meeting was to discuss future directions for ISR.  Below is a summary of the topics discussed and the proposals of the executive committee to be reviewed by the ISR members at the International Assembly meeting on December 1st in Chicago at the RSNA.  Several of these issues will require a vote by the Assembly.  ISR member society representatives have already received the meeting agenda and supporting material. 

Attendees at the summer ex com meeting included executive committee members:  J. Borgstede, B. Allen, R. Baron, L. Donoso, J. Drape, R. Garcia-Monaco, J. Labuscagne, L. Lau, L. Marti-Bonmati, C. Nicolau, R. Mendonca, R. Pozzi-Mucelli, E. Stern, and S. Vinayak.  Dr.  W. Thorwarth, CEO of the ACR, kindly provided the venue for this meeting at the ACR office and participated in the discussions. The ISR thanks the ACR for providing this venue.  I also thank Pam Mechler for her assistance with the logistics of this meeting and her valued comments.

The ex com approved a mission statement for the ISR that states:   “The mission of the ISR as a representative NGO is to facilitate the global endeavors of the ISR’s member organizations to improve patient care and population health through medical imaging.”

The ex com reviewed the data from the ICR 2014 International Assembly survey that many of you completed.  The committee discussed these results as well as the ISR’s future mission in the areas of education, quality and safety, regional meetings, and relations with WHO and IAEA.  The ex com reviewed the role of ISR committees, their membership, and committee material and content.      

These discussions resulted in a review of the bylaws and proposed bylaws changes that have already been distributed.  A link to these proposed bylaws changes is included here.  These changes include changes to the ISR committee structure and new opportunities for the ISR to engage in regional meetings beyond the traditional international congresses that have been held biennially.  These bylaws changes also propose an increase in the number of permanent executive committee members to include the RSNA-one of the world’s largest radiology organizations and a long-standing supporter of the ISR. This proposed change will not alter the number of elected seats on the executive committee but will actually open an additional elected seat typically held by the RSNA.  This change in the bylaws, if accepted, would also enhance the ISR’s relationship with the RSNA and ensure RSNA presence in future ISR projects and strategic decisions.

The ex com also examined a statement regarding the ISR’s educational mission as proposed by the ESR, ACR, and RSNA.  A goal expressed by all ex com members is for the ISR to have an increased impact in the developing world with ongoing longitudinal programs beyond the traditional concept of biennial international congresses.  Such programs might include regional meetings in countries that cannot support an international congress, but where such meetings will provide greater healthcare impact.  The ex com’s consensus opinion is the ISR should provide a menu of education options for which countries and regions may apply.  This strategy would focus on a bottom up approach allowing local areas to request the specific educational support they need. The consensus of the group was to include the typical ISR international congresses on the menu of education options especially as that brand is more valuable in South America and Africa.  This discussion resulted in the proposed bylaws change for Section X which states:  ““The ISR shall sponsor meetings with its member societies, including but not limited to regional meetings or International Congresses of Radiology (ICR), whose purpose is the development and advancement of medical imaging.”

After considering the ISR’s new mission statement, the ex com reflected on the future of ISR endeavors in quality and safety.  The discussion included the following points:  the role of the ISR’s committee on radiation quality and safety, a need to increase visibility for current quality and safety campaigns, considerations for a new structure to facilitate shared efforts and to avoid duplication in the quality and safety arena, ISR representation as an NGO to the WHO and the IAEA, and the role of the ISR as a global forum for all organizations working on quality issues.  During this discussion, the committee affirmed that the current ISR newsletter on quality and safety is excellent. 

The above discussions then lead to the question:  Who is the ISR’s audience in quality and safety?   The conclusion is that the WHO and IAEA are this audience.   Therefore, the ISR will continue to fund a WHO radiologist position through the end of 2015 and the ex com will vote on the funding for 2016 at its November meeting. 

The ex com discussed ISR membership and methods to increase the number of member societies.  While no changes were proposed, the ex com did express that the changes in structure described above will hopefully increase membership. 

The committee reviewed plans for the upcoming 2016 ICR in Buenos Aires. The ex com anticipates a successful meeting and encourages everyone’s attendance. 

The committee also examined the proposal by the Turkish Society for an ICR in 2018. The ex com hopes to have a contract signed by the Turkish Society by the time of the ex com meeting in Chicago in November. 

I look forward to seeing many of you at the International Assembly to be held in Chicago, December 1st at 4pm in McCormick Place.  Again, my thanks to Pam Mechler, Monika Hierath, the ESR, and the ACR for their support of the ISR. 

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