The ACR Needs You
By Charles W. Bowkley III, MD
Dispelling myths about the benefits of ACR membership and participation
I am categorized by the ACR as a “young or early career” physician, as I am under 40 and within the first eight years of my practice. If you’re like me, you know that the landscape of the profession has changed. The job market is tightening, and we are seeing less favorable job options as we transition into practice. Real uncertainty surrounds our future reimbursement, and demands on our time are increasing as we respond to various MOC responsibilities.
The challenges we face as we look toward our future may seem overwhelming, almost insurmountable. However, thanks to the ACR, we can address these challenges. And while the College defends the specialty, the reality is that ACR can’t do it alone. Our profession needs us now more than ever. We need to be active and engaged, not just as physicians practicing radiology, but as members of the ACR.
As chair of the Young and Early Career Physician Section, I hear all too often my colleagues’ usually misguided rationales for not paying dues or participating in the ACR. Here are some of the misconceptions I hear most often.
Misconception #1: Participating in the ACR won’t help me find a job.
I’ll tell you a story about a physician who I’ll call Dr. Jones. He was an East Coast native until as a high school student he moved to the West Coast. After medical school, Dr. Jones went on to intern in California and then ventured back east for residency and fellowship in a not-so-big city. During his training, Dr. Jones became involved in the ACR. This experience was a breath of fresh air in the mildly musty life of radiology residency. He was exposed to the inner workings of organized medicine and the immense nature of health care delivery from a wide-angle lens. He was introduced to so many bright and interesting individuals in the ACR that he decided to further his involvement. It was during this time as an ACR volunteer that Dr. Jones met a physician I’ll call Dr. Smith from Wyoming.