By Kate Traynor, RN, MC, FAACVPR | February 8, 2019
Dear AACVPR Nation,
As I approach the halfway mark of my presidency, it seemed a natural time to reflect on what we’ve accomplished so far this year and discuss what’s ahead. I want to share my impressions so far of AACVPR, of you and of the times we are working in, and what makes each of those three things so distinctive.
AACVPR is an organization that understands the need to remain relevant. The recent member survey was a valuable opportunity to hear your priorities, ensuring that the decision-making of the Board, leadership and staff accurately reflects what is most important to you. Hand in glove with those efforts, strategizing for future growth is at the forefront of our work, and embedded in our strategic plan to focus on membership, science and value-based care as well as the financial health and management of the organization.
Our certification programs — program and professional — firmly establish the organization as a leader in our industry. One case in point is that the national Blue Cross Blue Shield Blue Distinction Centers for Cardiac Care® designation includes AACVPR Program Certification among its criteria for qualifying hospitals. So if you are contemplating, have or will soon hit the “submit” button on your program’s certification application, it will distinguish your program as an extremely valuable addition to your hospital’s quality of care.
Additionally, our annual conference remains essential as our signature educational event. The program planning for Portland 2019 is well underway and will not disappoint. Our robust regulatory and legislative efforts are intended to address our challenges, and our collective support of these efforts — either at DOTH or at home in our local districts — has and will remain foundational to our future viability and growth.
Finally, investment in new technology keeps us on the cutting edge and the newly launched Learning Center will make it easier for you to access all the educational resources that your membership affords.
And then there’s you. Whether a member, volunteer, fellow Board colleague, strategic or staff partner, I have admired this group since my affiliation with AACVPR began in the 90s and that respect has only deepened over the past six months. We ask a lot of each other and ourselves. My recent affiliate tours, organizational meetings, phone conversations and emails have underscored the depth and breadth of your commitment and caring. What we do is no easy task. It requires knowledge, focus, teamwork and keeping up with the latest advances. You don’t all toil in the fanciest of digs or receive recognition or ample payment and reimbursement for the hard job at hand — helping people make and sustain healthier lifestyle changes — yet you are undeterred by that and remain committed to a better future for your patients.
Lastly, the conditions surrounding our work — demonstrating our outcomes, changing and innovating the way we do our work, using and incorporating information technology, continuing to work in teams, and being mindful of costs — has been thrust upon us. It’s our new reality, and we must lead in this as well, or risk having others define how our care will be delivered. The R2R initiative is one example of our response to these challenges. Forging partnerships to address current issues and shape the future is key to addressing our challenges. We have seen some success in this area with the release of the CDC /AACVPR Cardiac Rehab Change Packet. On the horizon is the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) funding for patient-centered outcomes research focused on improving cardiac rehabilitation utilization. You have my assurance that the AACVPR is poised and willing to collaborate and support this initiative.
This vision, these efforts, our style and flair is what inspires us and sets us apart — makes us distinctive. And it is what makes me proud and honored to be serving as your president.