November/December, 2004

Dear Colleagues,  

Healthcare Administrator or Healthcare Leader: Which One Are You?

Happy New Year and best wishes for a healthy and prosperous 2005. The Academy and the College had a strong 2004, laying a solid foundation for continued growth and expansion of our organization.

We have seen the expansion of the ACOA 1-minute update; a steady increase in new members; and, most recently, a successful conference in Orlando. Our new journal now has regular columns on coding and reimbursement, along with strategic planning. The position of liaison to the American College of Surgeons has solidified, and we see a regular update column in The Journal of Oncology Management. All these advances have set the stage for a stronger and more energized organization.

We have recently returned home from the ACOA annual conference in Orlando. Sessions covered many issues, from developing community genetics and palliative care programs to coding and reimbursement for radiation therapy and the changes in the Commission on Cancer survey process. The how-tos of setting up a geriatric oncology specialty were also presented with many take-home tips. For the first time there was a poster session, giving thought-provoking ideas to all. Along with these specific oncology topics, leadership was exuberating from everywhere, starting with the keynote kickoff and including the networking get-together, the state and regional meetings, and the individual colleges get-together. It was an exciting conference and is an exciting time to be part of the Academy.

Our focus this year will be on 3 distinct areas: membership, communication, and education. In membership, we will work on increasing not only our numbers, but also member commitment to others by mentoring, being involved, and sharing their leadership skills with other oncology leaders. We will work together on our communication by increasing the value of the Journal, by working to develop an email alert system to relay the most up-to-date information to our members in a timely fashion, and by adding a “members only” section to the Web page. We will work together to meet the educational needs of our membership, not just for those who can attend the conference, but also for all members.

With constant changes in technology and reimbursement, it is becoming more important to join with colleagues and other professional groups to blaze new trails and prepare for the future. Now is the time to get involved and share your talents with others as we set the stage for years to come. Do not settle for being a heathcare administrator or a healthcare provider; join us and become a “Healthcare Leader.” If we pool our talents, together we can make a difference. It takes only one spark to light a fire!

Best Regards,