May 13, 2016

What works best in your Chapter for member/patient benefit?

This week's BOG Update is brought to you by Christian Breburda, Governor of ACC's Arizona Chapter.

Member Value: What's Working for and What's in Store for Arizona?

As one of the cornerstones of ACC's strategic plan, focusing on member value and increasing benefits to members are both critically important – to the College as a whole, as well as to the ACC Chapters. As the previous chair of education for the Arizona Chapter, and newly vested Governor, I have initiated several meaningful membership benefits in our Chapter. My motto for my presidency is ACC for ACC Arizona: Activate Collegial Contributions for ACC Arizona, so together we can build an active and strong Arizona Chapter.

In an effort to provide member value and benefit, I wanted to focus on special sections and groups within our chapter membership. Upon taking office as Governor, I established several new subspecialty sections and section chairs: electrophysiology, imaging, intervention, prevention, pediatric cardiology, heart failure and transplant. The appointed subspecialty section chairs, are non-voting Chapter Board members at-large and organize yearly section meetings and collaborate with specialty societies on CME courses in state and monthly meetings. I appointed a new Fellow in Training (FIT) chair, who – together with the early career chair – organizes an annual early career/FIT dinner.

Additionally, I appointed a new chair of education, who – together with the FIT and early career chair – plans to establish an alumni network database for graduating fellows in the state, link FIT with an innovative think tank initiative for projects and patents, as well as develop a mentor program for FIT. This is an exciting and growing area for our Chapter and I look forward to the progress.

Our 2016 annual meeting will include programming complete with FIT poster presentations, national and key state speakers providing educational updates in key subspecialties, CME, and special designated section tables. We will have a second yearly state-wide meeting with focus on business side of cardiology, similar to the annual Cardiovascular Summit. We anticipate speakers on topics like maintenance of certification, MACRA and PINNACLE.

We have also launched a state wide interactive STEMI Care Application. We establish an annual state wide patient quality and equality of care initiative (STEMI, PINNACLE).

International collaboration is important to us as a Chapter, so we named an international chair to establish an international section that would build a lasting partnership with the ACC's Chapter in Mexico. One such example of these collaborations includes a partnership with Medtronic to organize brachytherapy preceptorships in Mexico City, as well as visiting Mexican fellows/MD preceptorships at Arizona teaching institutions.

The Arizona Chapter co-sponsored four pharmaceutical dinners with brief introductions by a Chapter Board member about the ACC Chapter at dinners. Co-sponsoring industry dinners provides us with access and advertisement for the ACC Arizona Chapter. I was the speaker on two such dinners this spring presenting on contrast echo.

We have many plans in place to grow the Chapter and provide unique opportunities and experiences for our members, as well as ensure that our leadership is aligned and communicating effectively and often. To increase Board interaction, we will be setting up an email group/list serve to facilitate improved bidirectional communication, and we will have three annual in-person Board meetings. Furthermore, we have already implemented a Board member accountability point system, like the California Chapter has instituted.

The Arizona Chapter plans to hold a statewide meeting for Women in Cardiology, as well as grow the recently established annual award program, both in a concerted effort to be inclusive and recognize the accomplishments of some of our talented members.

When it comes to partnering and collaborating with other organizations, we are planning partner with the American Heart Association to organize a lobby day, as well as participate in the annual Heart Ball.

On the education front, we plan to adopt CALValve™ in the state – a peer-to-peer, statewide CME accredited valvular heart disease education program. Additionally, we will be organizing two MOC dinners where two speakers review an ABIM/ACC module.

We are excited about the plans to develop an online, open-access, reader peer-reviewed Journal (Arizona Journal of Cardiology) in the format of a blog. This Chapter member benefit will include clinical studies, case reports, brief communications and annual Arizona meeting abstracts.

In 2017, our annual meeting with consist of one and a half days, including breakout sessions, ACC updates and a keynote address, and we plan to take our meeting content – both in 2016 and 2017 – to the web, capturing the sessions via video for Facebook Live and on YouTube.

I am eager to hear if any of these programs or initiatives are helpful to you as you plan 2016 and 2017 and focus on increasing Chapter value to members, and I welcome any additional input for us as we execute these plans for our year ahead. Sharing these best practices is an important part of our roles as Governors.