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Ready, Set, GO!


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Ready, Set, GO!

  1. 1. RPA/RA under radiologist’s direct supervision. Much debate has gone into the name of the bill also. Upon di- rection from the lobbying group it was noted that the title should be as minimalis- tic as possible. SRPE asked for the usage of the “Radiology Physician Ex- tender” moniker and it was finally agreed and seconded by SRPE that the introduc- tion of an entirely new moniker would cause confu- sion amongst lawmakers. In the bill itself, the Radiology Practitioner Assistant and Radiologist Assistant are both independently defined and equally represented into the “ask”. The SRPE legislative envoy will be making another appearance on Capitol Hill in the second week of September in which we will start the process again to As the new legislative session is getting ready to start, the SRPE legislative envoy is gearing up for another big push for com- prehensive legislation that will enable the RPE to per- form and bill for services that we were designed to perform. With a new lob- bying team hired by ARRT, quite a few hours of work have gone into maximizing and streamlining our “ask” while maintaining a minimal amount of wording. The new bill draft entitled “Treatment of Services of a Qualified Radiolo- gist Assistant Under Supervision of a Radiolo- gist” would give the Radiologist Assistant (RA) and Radiology Practitioner Assistant (RPA) statutory authority for payment for services furnished by the RPA or RRA. This bill, if passed, would amend the Social Security Act to (1) direct the Secretary of Health and Human Services to modify the Medicare rules governing the supervision of diagnostic tests to allow direct physician supervision of diagnos- tic tests performed by the RPA/ RA which they are legally au- thorized to perform under state law; and (2) reduce the profes- sional component reimburse- ment to 85% for those tests and procedures performed by a Full Court Press; Plan B Initiated! Continued on page 5 Radiologist Assistant Delegate Chapter The American Society of Radiologic Technologists house of delegates approved the formation of the Radiol- ogist Assistant delegate chapter in July. SRPE mem- bers Eric Burd RPA/RRA will serve as Chairman, and Tra- cy Ferrara RRA will serve as Vice-Chair. SRPE extends a congratula- tions to these members. This certainly shows the rele- vance that Radiology Extend- ers have in the community and also highlights the efforts these members have placed for their chosen profession. SOCIETY OF RADIOLOGY PHYSICIAN EXTENDERS, INC. September 2, 2010September Update Ready, Set, GO! Special points of interest:  Ramped up Grass Roots Plan B  State Legislation  Constituent Letter  Unification  Unification  Unification  RA Chapter Delegates Inside this issue: Full Court Press 1 Grass Roots Transmittal 2 Constituent Letter 3 Message from the President 4 Full Court Press; Continued 5 Continued on page 5
  2. 2. An idea not coupled with action will never get any bigger than the brain cell it occupied. Arnold H. Glasow Page 2 Ready, Set, GO! Everyone has been extremely anxious to initiate the new Grass Roots effort. After weeks of negotiations and bi-weekly strategy sessions with ACR, ARRT, ASRT, and members of the SRPE Board, we have developed a grass roots letter that will serve as the template to the community to contact their congressional representatives. As per prior efforts, it is important for members of the RPE community to get involved and to assist us in positively influencing Senators and Congressmen to support or even sponsor this revised legislation. The legisla- tion that is being proposed defines the Radiologist Assistant as follows: “A radiologist assistant is an individual who is nationally certified by the Certifica- tion Board for Radiology Practitioner Assistants as radiology practitioner assistants or by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists as a radiologist assistant.” The board agrees that this statement will no-doubt spark debate amongst the RPA community . SRPE has been involved in this development process from the begin- ning and feels that what is being recommended is the easiest way to diminish confu- sion with lawmakers. The title and definition has also been strongly recommended by the experienced lobbying firm being employed to guide this process. Attached is a draft letter that can be edited with personal information and sent to individual Senators and Representatives. This process should be started as soon as possible. To help you determine who your Senators or District representatives are, I have provided the following web addresses for you to locate this information. The websites also give you the address in which to send this letter. This letter can be sent by anyone who employs, works along with, is a student, or is themselves an RPE. SRPE Board members will make themselves available to assist you in this process and answer any questions you might come up with. As always, please remember to forward any responses received by congressional staff to the SRPE board so that we can monitor the progress and forward to our lobbying group. If the response re- ceived from the congressional staffers requests more information, please contact Jason Barrett as soon as possible and we will follow up and provide the requested information. If they ask for a teleconference call, SRPE will gladly provide the call— in information and arrange the meeting with the congressional staff, members of the board, and the constituent. This is not just a member benefit but a community effort. Even if you are not a member of the SRPE, we urge you to assist us in this process. GRASS ROOTS Transmittal
  3. 3. Sample Form Letter Government is not reason; it is not eloquent; it is force. Like fire, it is a dangerous servant and a fearful master. George Washington Page 3 Ready, Set, GO! Dear Representative/Senator ______________: [Add brief description of your title, where you work, and any other information that helps establish a constituent link to the Congressman/Senator.] One of the challenges of health reform implementation will be ensuring that we have an adequate supply of medical professionals to meet the increased demand for ser- vices. One area of particular concern is medical imaging. The rising demand and clinical need for timely medical imaging services and the increased complexity of radiologic studies already have placed unsustainable pressure on our health care delivery system, and the delays and backlogs will worsen. These issues will adverse- ly affect quality of care and patient outcomes. Fortunately, collaboration between the American College of Radiology (ACR), the American Society of Radiologic Tech- nologists (ASRT), the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT), and the Society of Radiology Physician Extenders (SRPE) has produced a viable, cost- effective solution. I am writing to request your support and assistance. Several years ago, the above organizations developed the concept of a radiologist assistant (RA) – a radiographer with additional advanced radiologic and medical ed- ucation, specialized clinical training, and advanced certification. RAs are qualified to perform many assessments and procedures (excluding interpretations) that tradi- tionally are performed by a radiologist. Today, 13 universities offer education and training for the RA, and 28 states license, certify, or otherwise recognize the profes- sion. A radiologist assistant is an individual who is nationally certified by the Certifi- cation Board for Radiology Practitioner Assistants as radiology practitioner assis- tants or by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists as a radiologist assis- tant. In order to make effective use of RAs, Medicare policy must be changed to allow RAs to perform radiologic procedures under the direct supervision of a radiologist to the extent permitted by state law. Current Medicare rules require a more stringent level of radiologist supervision that is inconsistent with the RA’s level of education and experience and makes it extremely difficult for RAs to assist the radiologist in deliv- ering timely, quality care to beneficiaries. Attached is a document that describes this issue in greater detail and outlines the parameters of a legislative solution. According to an independent analysis, the legis- lation, which would apply a 15% reduction in reimbursement to the radiologist for professional services performed by an RA, is expected to have no federal budgetary impact. I hope I can count on you to introduce or cosponsor this urgently-needed and noncontroversial legislation. Sincerely, Your Name RPA/RRA 124 Frustrated Way Somewhere, Near Hear 01234
  4. 4. With state licensure on the mind of so many RPEs, it is important that efforts be made to get the remaining states on par with the other 28. With federal billing legislation being brought to the table, billing capabilities will most likely be tied to whether or not states statutes allow RPEs to perform studies in which their radiolo- gists are billing for. As is happening in California, SRPE will collaboratively work with ASRT to get appropriate legislation moving in states that do not currently have licensure in place. It will certainly take the efforts of the current resi- dents also. In California, a draft licensure has been shared with all the current residents and also some that are planning on mov- ing back to California. The overall support has been posi- tive and the hope is that a final draft can be evaluated by the chosen lobbyist and distributed amongst the RPEs in the state before October. SRPE also feels that with unifi- cation and organization of state level RPEs, efforts such as licen- sure will more easily be accom- plished. The formation of state societies for RPEs is a good way to start that process. State Licensure: California and Beyond Message from the President: Election Time! office hold a voting SRPE membership continually for three years before being con- sidered as a candidate for office. Considering the com- plex nature of upholding the values and mission of the SRPE, it is imperative that candidates show commitment to the Society and demon- strate the ability to promote the mission statement de- signed for both the RPA and RRA. This requirement is standard for most member- ship societies to hold office. In order to completely serve the community as the “Unified Voice of Radiology Physician Extenders”, it is imperative that we as a community take steps to organize and become one. Secondly, between September 1st and September 30th, 2010, the Board will accept nominations for the Vice- President and Secretary board seats. The candidates will be notified and given an opportunity to accept or de- cline the nomination. The voting will take place at the same time as the proposed by -law changes. Voting will end on October 31st and nomi- nees will be notified via the website within 24 hours of voting deadline. Clare Brady will be running as the incum- bent Secretary. If you have any questions about the elec- tion process or have someone in mind for one of the electable seats, feel free to contact me or another board member. By now, most of the SRPE members should have re- ceived an official notification of the proposed by-law changes and notification of officer elections. In an effort to complete the unification process that my predecessor initiated by changing the name of the society from National Society of Radiology Practitioner As- sistants to the current name Society of Radiology Physi- cian Extenders, I have asked the board to consider chang- ing two key components of the by-laws. The first change would be to allow Radiologist Assistants (RRA) registered by the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists to hold office with the SRPE. The board overwhelming agrees that this is a needed change and recommended that it be placed before the member- ship for discussion and ulti- mately for vote as is required by the current Society by- laws. The second proposed change would be to require that candidates running for It is imperative that we, as a community, take the final steps to organize and become one! Page 4September Update On the Vegas strip! Come join us for another year at Har- rah’s Hotel and Casino April 28th—May 1st, 2011.
  5. 5. 3662 Sussex Lane Philadelphia, PA 19114-1816 Phone: 508-393-9510 Cell: 479-619-8581 E-mail: “The Society of Radiology Physician Extenders (SRPE) is a non-profit organization for the RPA and RRA sharing a common bond within the global mid-level radiology profession and medical community in gen- eral. The society holds an annual conference conducting seminars and presentations. The SRPE is an active participant with other health care professionals and organizations to educate and promote the role of the mid-level radiology extender. Our organization is com- mitted to fostering the highest values and promoting superior life- long success both personally and professionally.” SOCIETY OF RADIOLOGY PHYSICIAN EXTENDERS, INC. Another tool that SRPE will be utilizing will be to hold telecon- ference calls with congressional staffers in conjunction with SRPE members who are con- stituents of the respective Sen- ators and Congressmen. This tool has been used in the past and seems to have made an impact. gain support for the bill while also finding Senate sponsorship. This trip is coordinated with the lobbying firm Polsinelli- Shughart and will mark the first dedicated push for legislation with the new lobbying firm. The community is again asked to assist in making this issue relevant with Congressional staffers. Attached to this up- date will be a form letter devel- oped by the SRPE and reviewed by the joint workgroup of ACR, ASRT, ARRT, and Polsi- nelli-Shughart. Members are asked to input their personal information in place of the “red” text and send it in to the Senator and Congressmen that represent them in their state and district. As per usual pro- tocol, SRPE will be glad to as- sist in any dialogue to further clarify the request for help. Lastly, it is extremely important that this effort be accomplished in a unified and consistent man- ner so as not to confuse or distance ourselves from our elected officials. Your membership dues go towards these efforts and advocacy. Full Court Press; Plan B Initiated! The Unified Voice of Radiology Physician Extenders We’re on the web! Legislative Envoy Jason Barrett RPA/RRA President Wade Carrington RPA Past-President Eric Burd RPA/RRA Past-President Leeanne Langston RPA/RRA Executive Advisory Comm. 12th Annual SRPE Educational Conference April 28—May 1st, 2011  24 A or A+ CME Credits  ACLS Recertification  3rd Annual Evening Social  Radiology Extender (RPA,RRA) Exam Review  On-site Vendors with Prod- ucts and Devices  Annual Business Meeting and Open Forum