WSRS President’s Viewbox: February 2022

Dear Members,

Happy New Year!  A new year always brings the opportunity for a fresh start, something all of us desperately need.  This past year has seen many fits and starts, as the variants have gone through half of the Greek alphabet.  No one knows what the coming year will bring.  I’m sure we will all continue to face challenges from the virus, but radiologists have always been resilient.

One thing every January does bring is a new legislative session in Olympia.  As many of you know, state legislators only meet in Olympia for several months at the beginning of the year.  This leads to a mad rush to pass legislation…and a mad rush for your Washington State Radiological Society to figure out what bills other groups are trying to pass.  Thank goodness for our lobbyist Jim Hedrick!  He summarizes  in this newsletter some of the proposed bills that could have a profound impact on your practice.

With all of the state legislators gathered at the capital, your Washington State Radiological Society organizes an annual advocacy day to meet key members.  Despite the trepidation from a half-day of back-to-back Zoom meetings, several WSRS Board members persevered this year, and met with Rep. Eileen Cody, the chair of the House Health Care & Wellness Committee, as well as Ms. Jane Beyer from the Office of the Insurance Commissioner, discussing all things balance billing.  We also took the opportunity to meet our home representatives, keeping lines of communication open.  Hopefully, we can meet our representatives and senators in person next year, and I encourage all of you to join us.  No experience needed!  We will make sure to team you up with someone more experienced when you talk with your legislators.

Many of your WSRS Board members are also preparing for the ACR Annual Meeting in Washington, DC, that runs April 24-27.  Here we learn about multiple initiatives from the ACR, as well as challenges that radiologists in other states face (and often make their way to Washington State).  We also represent our state as multiple ACR resolutions are debated, and Practice Parameters get discussed.  While there, we take the opportunity to meet with our US Senators and Representatives, helping legislators understand the difficulties that radiologists face.

A new year always brings new challenges, but with them new opportunities.  Your WSRS is well-positioned for both.

Wishing you and your families all the best in 2022,


WSRS President, 2020-2022

Tackling Breast Cancer Disparities

Saturday, October 16th
10:00 – 11:00 a.m.
Virtual Event: Click here to register

This event is free for everyone!

Breast cancer awareness event presented by Virginia Mason Franciscan Health in partnership with the Seattle Seahawks, Washington State Radiological Society, and Cierra Sisters.

Black women get more aggressive breast cancer at a younger age and die from it more often than White women. Screening and early detection are so important. Join us for an expert panel discussion to raise awareness and answer your questions.

  • Welcome message by Karen Wilkins-Mickey, Seahawks Vice President of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Dr. Robert Gutierrez, Chair of the WSRS Breast Imaging Task Force, will be moderating the panel.
  • Dr. Peter Eby, BITF and WSRS board member, will also be speaking.

Seahawks raffle prizes given out by mascot Blitz!!!!

WSRS President’s Viewbox: July 2021

The weariness of the past year and a half has weighed on all of us. Cancellation of elective procedures, PPE shortages, and waiting for COVID vaccines are all challenges that we have endured. Now, as social activities have started up in Washington State, we are warned of (or experiencing!) increasing case numbers from the Delta variant. It seems like this pandemic will never end….

Just like the obstacles that radiologists in Washington are constantly facing. Your WSRS is hard at work learning about these issues, and helping you meet the problems head-on.  Did you know that Olympia has instituted a new “tax” on your wages? This begins in the new year (January 1, 2022), with the collections being used to fund a new Long-Term Care Trust, to ensure that there is funding for long-term care for Washingtonians in the future. There is NO cap on the amount being collected each year. If you have your own long-term care policy, you can apply for an exemption from the tax but you need to act well before the end of the year. Find out more details below.

Although the ACR Annual Meeting could not be held in person this year, you can access the Reference Committees’ final reports online. Several of your WSRS Board members were still able to meet with our congressional delegation over Zoom. We met with the staff of Sens. Murray and Cantwell, as well as our representatives, and even briefly chatted with Reps. Schrier and Newhouse. We talked about bills supporting the mental health of health care workers and finding a long-term solution for the reimbursement cuts to radiologists from changes in the E/M (Evaluation & Management) codes.

Our Residents and Fellows Section (RFS) has also been active in setting up a mentorship program for trainees. Drs. Mariam Shehata and Shamus Moran have been recruiting members to become mentors and matching them to residents with similar interests. If you would like to help guide radiologists-in-training (no formal training needed, just life experience!), please contact Dr. Moran for more information.

And Dr. Rachel Gerson was instrumental in coordinating another successful Women in Radiology Mentoring Event this spring. Of our 639 dues-paying WSRS members, only 26.3% are women. Even amongst our state’s members-in-training, only 36.7% are female. When 47.9% of US medical school graduates in 2018-19 are women (from AAMC website), there is a clear disparity for our specialty. More needs to be done to attract women to radiology, to ensure the strength in our field. Many thanks to Dr. Gerson for all of her efforts to make sure that women feel welcome.

As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions. I hope you take the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors this summer. I look forward to seeing you at our annual meeting this November!


Sammy Chu, MD, FRCPC, FACR

Introducing the WSRS Mentorship Program

We are excited to announce the launch of the Washington State Radiological Society Mentorship Program. The goal of the program is to provide valuable networking and educational opportunities to WSRS trainee members across Washington state. The mentors will get the satisfaction of helping early career peers to navigate the industry. 

Please take a moment to review the program overview below. If you are interested in volunteering to be a mentor, contact us at We have a list of member trainees who are eager to connect with mentors!

Please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions.

Program Description

The WSRS Mentorship Program is one of the strategies that the organization uses to achieve its mission to provide networking and educational opportunities to its RFS members. The program establishes one-to-one collaborative relationships between residents and fellows wishing to enhance their leadership skills and practicing radiologists looking to contribute to radiologists in training.

The program itself seeks to connect mentees with an appropriate mentor, as well as to provide a framework for the collaboration. This collaboration is expected to last 12 months with a half-hour contact every 12 weeks or as frequently as each match sees fit. Note that telephone calls or video conferencing sessions are perfectly acceptable means to connect. At the end of the engagement, both participants will be released to work with other mentors/mentees – though, of course, one of the points of this program is to build networks that last throughout one’s career.

Participants start by submitting a Mentorship Program Application specifying if they would like to be either a mentor or mentee. The program coordinators – typically Resident and Fellows Section (RFS) leadership with assistance as needed from WSRS board members – compiles the information and connects prospective mentors with a mentee. From there, both parties meet on a regular basis to discuss whatever topics both parties mutually agree to discuss.


A mentor is practicing radiologist who gets satisfaction from helping less experienced peers navigate the industry. The mentor’s job is to assist their mentee in addressing career issues, such as providing guidance on how to approach major professional decisions, giving education around a concept they have yet to encounter, or simply acting as a sounding board to provide a different point of view. There are no well-defined rules for what a mentor must cover because each collaboration is different, and the content of the discussions may change from meeting to meeting.

Mentors need to:

  • Serve as a role model
  • Share experiences as a practicing radiologist
  • Provide career guidance
  • Assist the mentee in setting professional goals and develop the skills needed to reach them
  • Generate motivation and support
  • Assist the mentee with networking
  • Be objective and independent


A mentee is an active WSRS RFS member who feels that she or he could benefit from the one-on-one attention and guidance that a mentor would provide. The mentee’s job is to bring issues to the mentor for discussion; the mentor will provide direct feedback and assistance based on his or her own professional history. This is an important point: the mentee is ultimately the one who establishes the content for the meeting. The mentor’s job is to provide guidance.

All mentees must be active members with WSRS. In addition, mentees need to:

  • Keep appointments with your mentor
  • Learn as much as possible
  • Permit your mentor to make recommendations regarding professional goals and objectives
  • Be open to feedback
  • Come to each mentoring session prepared with items to discuss including areas where you need your mentor’s help 

Program Framework

The framework for how mentors and mentees work together is just a suggestion – if this framework doesn’t work well for the parties, then they may change it as needed. For example, if the meeting frequency expectation is too much, they can elect to meet less often. The important thing, however, is that both parties need to agree on what that new framework should look like.

2021 Day of Advocacy Virtual Event on February 16

Registration is closed. Thank you to everyone who joined us!

In lieu of WSRS’s traditional “Day of Advocacy in Olympia,” please join us on February 16 at 10am for a Zoom meeting with Nick Streuli, Executive Director of External Affairs for Governor Jay Inslee. Nick Streuli has been the Inslee Administration’s point man on business re-opening, COVID testing, and COVID vaccine efforts. Nick can give us a first hand account of how the governor’s office pivoted quickly a year ago and the state’s current effort to deploy vaccines and at what time they will be readily available. 

Nick Streuli is a member of Governor Jay Inslee’s Executive Team and was appointed executive director of the external affairs in May 2020. He has more than 10 years of experience in public policy, government relations, and executive management.

Nick joined the Inslee administration after spending four years as legislative director for the Employment Security Department (ESD). He also worked as the ESD federal government and tribal affairs liaison prior to serving as the legislative director.

Nick worked closely with the legislature and stakeholders on groundbreaking legislation such as the Paid Family and Medical Leave Act in 2017 and the Long-Term Care Trust Act in 2019.

Nick holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and economics and a master’s degrees in business administration from the Washington State University. He and his wife, Christina, have one son and live in Tumwater.

Gold medal Chapter Recognition Award

ACR Chapter Recognition Program. ACR IS pleased to announce that WSRS has been selected to receive the award for Excellence in Meetings & Education in Division D. Your chapter’s commitment to excellence in Meetings & Education has not gone unnoticed by ACR.

WSRS President Ruben Krishnananthan and the WSRS Executive Council accept the award on behalf of WSRS Membership at the ACR Annual Meeting May 20, 2019