This is a busy and exciting time at SCAI, and I wanted to provide you with an update on your society. These messages will be my way to ensure I stay in touch with you throughout my presidency.
Please check out the activities of SCAI’s committees and working groups (compiled for easy reference here), and get involved yourself. I began volunteering in SCAI almost 25 years ago and have come to think of the “I” in “SCAI” as representing each one of us, contributing to the Society’s mission and furthering our field to benefit our patients. I encourage you to take advantage of the opportunities that come with being active in SCAI.
This summer, one of SCAI’s priorities is identifying a new executive director/CEO. The Search Committee, led by Chris White and Jim Blankenship, is seeing tremendous interest and remaining right on schedule. We anticipate welcoming SCAI’s new administrative leader early this fall. Meanwhile, thanks to an extremely dedicated and highly competent transition team of physicians and senior staff, this is the most productive I have seen SCAI. I am excited to be able build on this growth with SCAI’s new executive director.
The SCAI 2014 Scientific Sessions were the most successful in the Society’s history – breaking records in every category and receiving top marks for quality and value. (If you missed the meeting, log on to SCAI 2014 On Demand.) The SCAI 2015 Program Committee and Cath Lab Leadership Boot Camp Steering Committee are well ahead of schedule; both the SCAI 2015 Preliminary Program and Boot Camp news will be available soon. Please mark your calendar to join us in San Diego, May 6-9.
At SCAI 2014, we announced that CMS had just granted SCAI’s request to create a physician specialty designation for interventional cardiologists. This, like establishment of SCAI-PAC, is a key step for our advocacy program. I am proud to announce that 100 percent of SCAI’s Board of Trustees has participated in SCAI-PAC this year. With such enthusiasm, we will continue to grow the PAC – one of several ways that SCAI is representing our profession and our patients. I hope you, too, will support this essential effort.
In recent months, our Advocacy team has been active on several fronts, including –
- Working tirelessly for meaningful reform to the ABIM and its Maintenance of Certification requirements and process, with our own dedicated working group;
- Convincing New York State’s Medicaid program officials to reconsider their policy that could have reduced access to medically necessary procedures for Medicaid patients;
- Meeting with Congressional Representatives and their legislative staff on Capitol Hill; and
- Commenting on both the inpatient and outpatient Proposed Rules from CMS.
This summer, SCAI’s educational portfolio has been significantly expanded to include a number of new online offerings, including –
- The SCAI FIT Portal, where fellows-in-training can securely document their cases and export them for certification and credentialing, navigate high-quality educational content and access career development opportunities, and Program Directors can assign lectures and monitor their fellows’ activity;
- The TAVR Center, which brings TAVR operators together to access case reviews and key studies; and
- SecondsCount.org, SCAI’s online patient resource, which reaches more than 100,000 visitors per month, providing in-depth information on cardiovascular health -- from strategies for prevention of cardiovascular disease through discussion of conditions, symptoms, tests and treatment options.
Multiple committees are working on all cylinders, creating a SCAI roster of in-person meetings, including the popular Transradial (TRIP) and CTO programs as well as SCAI’s Fall Fellows program for adult and pediatric fellows. SCAI and its educational and quality mission have been enthusiastically received worldwide with fellows’ courses and special sessions throughout the globe.
SCAI is Quality, and our Quality Improvement Program is without equal and still expanding, with a number of new publications and tools to support patient care:
- This summer SCAI released aseries of expert consensus documents on appropriate use of interventions in the aorto-iliac, femoral-popliteal, and infrapopliteal vascular beds. While these documents do not replace AUC, they define and support best practices by our members for our patients.
- Pediatric SCAI-QIT provides pediatric interventional cardiologists with four new tools tailored to the unique medical needs of children.
- SCAI-QIT has grown to feature new tools for PCI risk assessment. Designed for a variety of platforms, each tool helps cath lab teams evaluate patients’ risk for complications and discuss treatment options with them and their families.
As you can tell from this overview of SCAI’s latest activities, I am delighted with SCAI’s rapid growth in all of its mission areas. I urge you to visit SCAI.org, which is undergoing significant expansion to feature dedicated online hubs for sharing knowledge, reviewing cases and current literature, and analyzing intriguing images. SCAI.org’s Coronary and Peripheral Interest Sections launched already this summer, while Structural, Congenital and Quality Improvement sections are in the pipeline.
You should soon receive the summer edition of SCAI’s newsletter in your mailbox. It is packed with updates on SCAI’s wide variety of activities and more. Please watch for the newsletter.
Finally, please take 3 minutes (literally) to watch SCAI’s latest video showcasing the value of interventional cardiovascular therapies. Presented at SCAI 2014 and showcased on social media, this video is a testament to our work and how it benefits our patients. Watch it now.
Stay in touch with your comments on our work, your concerns, and ideas for the future. Reach me anytime at president@SCAI.org.
Best regards, and I hope you enjoy the rest of the summer,
Charles Chambers, MD, FSCAI
SCAI President, 2014-15