RBMA to consolidate annual meetings in 2017

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Less is more for the Radiology Business Management Association (RBMA), which plans to consolidate its two yearly meetings into one annual event -- called RBMA Paradigm -- starting in 2017.

RBMA President Suzanne Taylor announced the change to attendees on April 25 in the opening session of RBMA's Radiology Summit meeting in Colorado Springs, CO. The spring Radiology Summit is one of two meetings -- the other being the Fall Educational Conference -- that RBMA offers to attendees.

RBMA started the two-conference format in 1997, with each meeting taking a different focus, according to Taylor. The Radiology Summit was designed as the group's overview conference, while the Fall Educational Conference offered a deep dive into specific topics and workshops.

Under the few format, RBMA Paradigm will consolidate the offerings of both shows into one meeting, with the first conference to be held April 23-26, 2017, at the Sheraton Grand Chicago. In 2018, the meeting will be held in April at the Hilton San Diego Bayfront.

RBMA decided to keep the April meeting date for the conference because members are familiar with that date, and it doesn't conflict with other meetings in radiology, Taylor said. Future Paradigm shows will rotate between different cities, and the shows will include an exhibition hall with vendor booths.

The move to a single meeting reflects the new reality in radiology, where there is less money available for corporate travel, Taylor said. RBMA polled both its members and exhibitors about proposed changes to its conference format and found support for a single meeting.

Indeed, RBMA believes that Paradigm will draw about 30% more members than the spring Radiology Summit, which at about 500 attendees is the larger of the two shows. The Fall Educational Conference draws about 350 attendees, Taylor said.

"Healthcare dollars are shrinking, and we need to help our members choose to make a good decision on how to get education either [at a destination meeting] or online," she told AuntMinnie.com.

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