Make a resolution to be proactive and improve your practice in 2012.

A New Year is always a good time to reflect on your organization’s strengths and weaknesses. But evaluating isn’t enough. It requires action to improve your business and your bottom line.

As with any business, there are multiple facets and functions to assess. Taking stock of your organization may seem like a daunting task. So where do you begin? A good place to start is to focus on your techs and your technology.

Conventional business wisdom says: Your people are your greatest asset. Certainly, this is true for imaging centers and private practices. After all, your radiologic technologists are very often the face of your practice. A New Year is an appropriate time to ask yourself about your tech team. Do your RTs have the right certifications? Are they continually training in the latest techniques and enhancing their skills? Do they exhibit a positive customer service attitude?

It seems to me that some centers and practices underestimate the role of the radiologic tech when it comes to driving future business. Word-of-mouth is the best (and least expensive) form of advertising and your RTs definitely influence what is and is not said about your practice. Patients—especially women who are often the decision-makers for health care choices for the entire family—talk about their experiences at imaging centers. Professional, polite, experienced technologists will have your patients saying positive things about your organization—to their friends and families and their physicians. That, in turn, can boost referrals and build your bottom line.

But ask not only what your techs are doing for your business; ask yourself what you are doing for your techs. Are you inspiring and motivating them in every possible way? Are you paving the way for their professional growth? For example, if you haven’t already, you might encourage your techs to join the American Society of Radiologic Technologists. (To learn more about enrolling your staff for membership, visit:

While people will always be your strongest asset, technology should be top-of-mind, too, for providers who plan to succeed in 2012 and beyond. Imaging informatics solutions are more important than ever before as radiologists in private practice aim to achieve meaningful use and as we move toward new payment models like accountable care organizations.

In this first issue of the New Year, Axis Imaging News offers ample coverage of technology tools and imaging informatics solutions. See our feature articles on PACS/RIS and enterprise imaging, image sharing, and storage. We’ve also included a dedicated section on select HIMSS’ product previews.

As we move forward in 2012, Axis Imaging News will cover all the critical issues and challenges that impact your practice—from anticipated billing and coding changes to meaningful use to regulatory and legislative issues. Moreover, we’ll be introducing some new technology ourselves. In February, we plan to launch a monthly digital edition of this magazine. You’ll find the issue in digital form—with interactive enhancements—on the home page of

It’s one more improvement we plan to offer you—our loyal readers. Now let me know how you plan to improve your practice in 2012. Happy New Year!

Marianne Matthews

Marianne Matthews