Author + information
- Allen J. Taylor, MD, FACC⁎ (, )
- James E. Udelson, MD, FACC,
- Nathaniel Reichek, MD, FACC and
- Valentin Fuster, MD, FACC
- ↵⁎Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Cardiology Service, WRAMC Building 2, Room 4A, 6900 Georgia Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20307-5001
We thank Drs. Flamm and Christian for their interest in our recent paper (1).
We agree with Dr. Flamm that collaboration between cardiologists and radiologists is key for the optimization of training opportunities for cardiovascular fellows in cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) imaging. The recent collaboration by the American College of Cardiology (ACC) and the Society for Cardiovascular Magnetic Resonance (SCMR) to develop the first Self-Assessment Program on CMR (“CMR SAP”) supporting fulfillment of COCATS level-1 training is a good example of productive synergy between societies.
Regrettably, despite Dr. Flamm’s call for a relationship of ACC and SCMR with the American College of Radiology (ACR), the ACR has directly declined collaboration in efforts of the ACC to promote competence and quality in imaging-based care. The ACR supports a number of actions including amendments to the Stark II law that would have the effect of barring cardiologists and other specialists from using magnetic resonance (MR) in the office setting. The ACR has been aggressively promoting restrictions with state and federal governments (and both private and public payers) on where MR and other imaging services can be delivered—and by whom. For example, the ACR supported legislation in Massachusetts that would have limited MR procedures to radiologists in the hospital setting. This effort was defeated, but a large number of similar efforts are emerging across the country, including a recent successful effort in Pennsylvania. Although we wish the ACR shared Dr. Flamm’s viewpoint, the ACC and SCMR are committed and capable of moving forward together in productive ways on behalf of cardiovascular specialists to enable the training and clinical opportunities in CMR to flourish.
Moving forward from this survey, the purpose of which was, in part, to identify the current state-training opportunities for the modalities, there is a need to translate its results into action. Dr. Christian identifies the current shortage of training opportunities, which we are hopeful is primarily a near-term problem that will ease as training opportunities rapidly expand into new centers with sufficient expertise and personnel experienced in advanced imaging modalities. Creative approaches to funding such opportunities are critical to their development and success.
- American College of Cardiology Foundation
- Taylor A.J.,
- Udelson J.E.,
- Fuster V.,
- American College of Cardiology Foundation’s Cardiovascular Imaging Committee and the Cardiovascular Training Directors Committee