Interventional radiologists were often at the frontlines, doing remarkably large numbers of procedures treating COVID-19 patients and among the only specialties that carried on staffing hospitals, providing daily services such as putting in dialysis catheters or treating COVID-19 related pulmonary emboli. “That was a very valuable experience for others to see. We were there, we stepped up – and patients benefitted,” Matthew S Johnson, who took on the Society of Interventional Radiology (SIR) presidency on 23 March 2021, tells Interventional News.
Johnson, who is the Gary J. Becker Professor of Radiology Research at Indiana University (Indianapolis, USA), outlines that distilling the lessons learned from the COVID-19 experience and emphasising and building a diverse society membership and leadership form the bedrock upon which SIR aims to employ research as a mature specialty to guide what interventional radiologists do to serve patients better and demonstrate the value of image-guided procedures – to patients, referring physicians and payers.
“We are pushing as a society, as a specialty, for people to become involved in research, to do high quality research and also to join us in [the] Virtex [registry],” he says.