ACR looks to retool annual meeting with broader focus

2012 07 09 14 36 45 373 Acr 2015 Logo Core Brand

The American College of Radiology (ACR) plans to change the focus of its annual meeting, opening the conference to all of its members in 2015 and broadening its content in hopes of creating an event that attracts 3,000 to 5,000 attendees to Washington, DC, each May.

The current incarnation of the ACR's annual meeting, the Annual Meeting and Chapter Leadership Conference (AMCLC), is technically open to all of the society's 30,000 members. However, it's attended mostly by ACR insiders, with a total attendance of about 400 ACR councilors, or chapter representatives, and 250 residents, according to Dr. Kimberly Applegate, who along with Dr. Paul Ellenbogen is co-chair of the ACR 2015 committee. Applegate is also vice chair for quality and safety in the department of radiology at Emory University.

ACR decided that broadening the meeting's focus and making an active effort to secure more attendees would be a good way to educate its membership on the mission and work of the society, Applegate said.

"ACR is one of the only radiology organizations that has an annual meeting but does not make an open call to members" to attend, Applegate told "We really want to promote the mission of what the college is. There are really unique things it does that no other organization does."

Under the new concept, ACR 2015 would feature a variety of categorical courses, educational-style group sessions, tracks diving into specific clinical topics, and lectures affecting broad areas in radiology, Applegate said. The recently launched Radiology Leadership Institute (RLI) would be highlighted, and ACR would also like to bring in big-name speakers from outside the radiology community, similar to how RSNA secured former president Bill Clinton as a speaker at its 2010 annual meeting.

The meeting would highlight the ACR's advocacy work, and it would also dovetail with the society's Capitol Hill Day, when ACR members visit representatives in Congress to press their case for issues important to the radiology community. The functions performed at the AMCLC meeting would still occur and would be folded into the broader event, Applegate said.

The ACR is conducting a survey of its members to get their opinions on content for the 2015 meeting, which has been scheduled for May 16-22 in Washington, DC. The society plans to review the survey results at a planning committee meeting in August. The survey can be reached by clicking here.

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