Presented by Richard Kloos, MD
American Thyroid Association
Annual Business Meeting
Friday, May 14, 2010
Dr. Kloos expressed his appreciation to the ATA membership for attending and stated that he hoped fellows would attend the Business meeting in the future. Dr. Kloos informed attendees that the full Secretary’s report can be found in the most recent ATA publication, SIGNAL, along with the ATA President and Treasurer reports. He noted the important partnership with the University of Colorado Denver in coordinating the Endocrine Fellows’ Day directed by Chip Ridgway, which makes possible travel for the ATA Fellows’ Track at this meeting. Dr. Kloos commended the 2010 Spring Meeting Program Chairs, Yaron Tomar and Virginia Sarapura for the outstanding programming of the meeting and encouraged the purchase of recorded sessions of the program. Dr. Kloos acknowledged the spirit of the ATA as demonstrated by Drs. Chip Ridgway and Ken Burman offering to stand in for two speakers unable to attend due to illness.
Dr. Kloos reported on the current ATA activities: providing world-class meetings for ATA members and non-members involved in Thyroidology, Endocrinology and surrounding disciplines, citing this year’s meeting as proof of the exemplary programming being delivered by the ATA; producing the official print journal THYROID; and providing research grants for investigators. He pointed members to the Spring Meeting program book listing awardees and the importance of nominating worthy candidates. He thanked those members who donated to the Fellows’ Travel Fund with their meeting registration as recognized in the program.
Additional activities ATA manages/supports are software and system updates including updates and maintenance for the website, financial systems, and membership database. The website initiatives are focused on a number of areas, including the Fellows’ Corner, Membership Profile, Breaking News Postings, and the Physician Referral tool. Dr. Kloos encouraged all members to visit these areas of the website and to ensure their profile information is current in the system.
Another area the ATA is actively managing through Headquarters and with the support of the Public Relations Committee is the Media. Numerous articles and other media exposure generate calls from reporters seeking ATA’s insight and feedback. Positive interactions have been conducted between the ATA and the FDA on a number of important issues as of late.
The ATA has two electronic publications, Clinical Thyroidology and Clinical Thyroidology for Patients. Jim Fagin, Chair of the ATA Publications Committee, will report upon the future of Clinical Thyroidology later in the Business Meeting. Alan Farwell and his committee are commended for their summaries of Clinical Thyroidology articles for patients, and then distributed to the Friends of the ATA as Clinical Thyroidology for Patients.
The ATA has been active in Patient Education and Advocacy activities, including patient groups who are exhibiting at this meeting.
Radioiodine Precautions and Safety Recommendations will be distributed in the near future. This effort has been led by Carol Greenlee and Gregory Brent and supported by all members of the Clinical Affairs Committee.
The ATA is actively interfacing with members of industry to advance areas of mutual benefit to the public and our patients. Dr. Steve Sherman has done an outstanding job of bringing this together with a transparent method that we feel will support our mission and benefit the public.
ATA Guidelines activities are contributing to greater visibility and influencing advances in patient care throughout the world. Dr. Kloos named the recently published revision of Differentiated Thyroid Cancer Guidelines and Medullary Thyroid Cancer Guidelines. ATA task forces are at work in Pediatric Thyroid Cancer, Hyperthyroidism, Hypothyroidism, Basic Sciences, and Anaplastic Thyroid Cancer; as well as additional focus and development in Laboratory Services. The Public Health committee has been incredibly active in issues of Potassium Iodine, Iodine in pre-natal vitamins, Congenital Hypothyroidism.
One current initiative of the ATA is to involve and transform our society into a multi-disciplinary group. The beginning of the Goiter Society was heavily involved with surgeons that, over time, became a decreasing number. Now, there is an active effort to make certain surgeons are a major part of our current group make-up. Additionally, an effort to recognize Pathologists which, Terry Davies will address, along with the goal of growing the number of nuclear medicine members and other specialty members to reinforce the goal of making the ATA a multi-disciplinary, multi-expertise and diverse group. Major efforts to reach out to Fellows, offering free membership to make them members and retain them as members. Member retention is always a top priority.