HPC Corner: Volunteer Dedication

Author: Rahul Bhala, MBA, MPH
The Health Policy Committee, Economics Committee, Quality, Safety, Value Committee, and Standards and Guidelines Committee are dedicated to advocating for ASNR and making our voice heard while impacting the world of medicine. I am enamored by and grateful for the commitment of our committee members and volunteers who are dedicated, and truly passionate, in advocating for better health policies, coverages, guidelines, and many other objectives. The amount of time and commitment is understated; however, I have never heard any complaints or excuses from our volunteers. It makes me wonder sometimes if some of our volunteers even sleep or eat! I am spoiled by the fact that I can contact our volunteers at any time of the day or night; including overnight (I have many times) and sure enough I will receive a quick response. I can go into numerous personal stories, however I think it is more important to note that our volunteers are continuously grinding and protecting ASNR interests, even if that means that they give up their free time to do so. As busy as a life I have (family, two young children), it makes me wonder, how our volunteers with their full-time jobs, families, and other commitments, are still able to accomplish so much. This level of dedication is something I have never seen before, and I truly cherish it. Fortunately, the time I have spent with our volunteers has allowed me to develop strong bonds and friendships that make our work even more enjoyable. It’s the devotion of our volunteers that make the jobs of the ASNR staff exciting and meaningful.
A few recent activities that our volunteers have participated in include the following:
  • Preparation for the April 2019 AMA RUC Meeting (Thank you to all who received and completed our surveys!)
  • Preparation for the May 2019 AMA CPT Meeting
  • Meeting with CMS at their headquarters to discuss neuroradiology CPT Codes
  • Continuous reviews, edits, and comments regarding our standards and guidelines/practice parameters
  • Attending a Contractor Advisory Committee (CAC) Meeting to advocate for coverage
  • Participation in various workgroups, sub-committees, and ad-hoc committees, including:
  • Cerebrovascular Coalition (ASNR chairs this coalition)
  • Multi-Society Pain Workgroup
  • CDE Subcommittee
  • AMA House of Delegates
  • ACR Council
  • Joint Commission Technical Advisory Panel
  • Many more projects and initiatives that our volunteers have participated in!
ASNR members should feel proud of the work that our committees and members are involved in. Two of the most influential meetings that ASNR participates in are the American Medical Association’s Relative Value Scale Update Committee (RUC) and the AMA’s Current Procedural Terminology Editorial Panel (CPT). The RUC includes an expert panel of physicians who make recommendations to CMS regarding the value of certain medical procedures, while the CPT Panel is responsible for creating, editing, and deleting CPT codes. As displayed, our committees are also involved in many other areas as well, including development and editing of standards and guidelines/practice parameters, reviews of medical coverage, creating and implementing common data elements, participation in various work-groups that allow ASNR to have a voice in policy, and many more initiatives. This allows us to ensure that ASNR is and always will be, viewed as a leader in medicine.
ASNR is in good hands due to the expertise and leadership of our volunteers. We have high functioning committees that allow us to lead the charge! The amount of dedication that we have from all our committee volunteers at ASNR is something that members should be proud of! It’s the dedication of our volunteers that continue to make our work relevant in the world of medicine! Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments at rbhala@asnr.org We thank all ASNR members and volunteers for their dedication, enthusiasm, and passion!

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