AHRA – Attendance Down (a bit), Interest Up (a lot).

Concerned about a dramatic drop in attendance, the AHRA annual meeting in Las Vegas was rescued from the brink of dissapointing participation by a swell of last-minute and onsite registrations. Overall, the attendance numbers were flat from last year, but the level of interest in MR safety issues was way up! I noticed three separate areas where this was demonstrated…

First, I was asked to give a presentation on MR safety and legal responsibility two separate times during the conference. Both sessions were very well attended… the first one was standing room only! Lots of attendee feedback was along the lines of

I wish I could have bottled this message to take it back to my CEO,’ or

my lead MR tech was so jealous that I got to see this,’ or

this was the most important session of the whole conference.’

I am flattered and humbled by the responses to the presentation and excited about the growing interest in MR safety.

Second, though I didn’t get to sit-in on nearly as many of the other sessions as I would have liked, I was thrilled that conference participants were asking MR safety questions in other break-out groups. There were questions about MR safety in facility design, questions to the ACR representatives about accreditation standards, and others.

Third, the interest and responses from people I talked with, and others that our Mednovus team had conversations with, ferromagnetic detection has shifted from the popular sentiment of ‘why would I ever do that’ to ‘I know I need to do that… now it’s just making it a budgetary priority.’ For the first time, ever, this was a trade show where not one manager of an MR facility said, ‘oh, I know what that is but we don’t need it.’

As always, the AHRA annual meeting was exceptionally well planned and executed. And, also as always, it is a tremendous forum for getting a sense of the state of the industry with regards to attention to MRI safety. The results of that are crystal clear… there is a greater awareness of – and concern about – MR safety and, in particular, ferromagnetic detection.

Tobias Gilk, President & MRI Safety Director
Mednovus, Inc.

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