Education is a prime motivator for our group. All of our radiologists stay current with continuing medical education (CME), attending conferences and performing self-assessment modules every year to keep our knowledge fresh and up-to-date. We also host several conferences in radiology and interventional radiology, including the world-famous International Symposium in Endovascular Therapy (ISET), theSymposium on Clinical Interventional Oncology, the Symposium on Emergency Department Radiology, the Coronary CTA Hands-On Workshop, and the Knock Out Stroke Symposium. We are also the clinical faculty for the department of radiology at the Florida International University Wertheim School of Medicine, educating medicine's future leaders. We are proud of our fellowship programs in interventional radiology and in interventional neuroradiology at MCVI, as well as a cardiovascular diagnostic imaging fellowship to start in July 2012.
RASF is also deeply involved in research, to help discover new ways of diagnosis and treatment and to help build medical literature. Our members have contributed to countless publications, and we have several ongoing research programs. We also host an annual MCVI Cook Research Scholar, the goal of which is to award a physician with a year's stipend to undergo research at MCVI to actively improve cardiovascular health through clinical research and outcomes investigation.
Another important field of contribution by RASF is through professional society work. There are dozens, if not hundreds, of medical societies, and they have several important roles. They organize medical conferences for the benefit of educating physicians. They set up standards of practice and guidelines for diagnosis and therapy. They communicate with the government and with state and local agencies to help determine coverages, health care policy, and regulatory issues. As president of the Society of Interventional Radiology, Dr. Jim Benenati might, for example, have dealt with the new interventional radiology pathway being implemented nationwide, might have overseen the funding of important research in IR, might have spoken with Congress about preserving access to health care, and might have consulted with medical device companies to better serve patient needs and develop innovative tools for interventional radiology. Professional societies serve a critical role in the "governance" of medicine and in providing educational and research assistance and guidance. They also serve in the certification of physicians, both through the oral board examinations by the American Board of Radiology, given to all radiologists, as well as the specialty Certificates of Added Qualification (CAQ) for subspecialty fields in radiology. We are proud to have numerous board examiners among our group.
RASF hosts a radiological grand rounds that invites distinguished speakers to lecture on important topics. We have drawn well-known speakers from around the world to discuss key topics in radiology and in medicine.
Finally, and critical to the delivery of day-to-day medical care, we provide on-going education and consultation within hospitals and clinics every day. We are available for consultation by doctors; we provide radiological expertise for tumor board and other multidisciplinary conferences; we give informal talks and make informal visits to physicians and small groups to discuss radiological topics such as breast screening, endovascular therapy, or cardiac CT and CTA.