ASNC, Massachusetts Medical Society Awarded Grant

Groups to participate in programs of the Choosing Wisely national campaign

American Society of Cardiology, Massachusetts Medical Society awarded grant to study use of cardiac imaging

Groups to participate in programs of the Choosing Wisely national campaign

Bethesda, MD. -- March 25 -- American Society of Nuclear Cardiology (ASNC) and the Massachusetts Medical Society (MMS) have been awarded a grant from the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) Foundation to participate in the Foundation's ongoing program of Choosing Wisely, a national campaign to encourage physicians and patients to discuss medical tests and procedures to help eliminate inappropriate testing.

ASNC and MMS are only two of 13 medical societies in the country to receive such grants from the ABIM Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the American Board of Internal Medicine, which certifies physicians in a range of specialties who demonstrate knowledge, skills, and attitudes essential for excellent patient care. Support for the program comes from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, the nation's largest philanthropic organization devoted exclusively to health care.

The grant to ASNC and MMS will help to develop a web-based application to collect data on physician ordering patterns for cardiac imaging tests, with the data being used to define the rate of appropriate and inappropriate referrals, as well as interventions for meaningful improvement. ASNC will also develop a patient-friendly website for physicians and their patients to inform patients about nuclear cardiac imaging and radiation optimization. The grant will run from April 1, 2013 through March 31, 2015.

"Cardiovascular imaging is an important diagnostic and prognostic tool in managing patients with heart disease," said James A. Arrighi, MD, President of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology. "Ensuring appropriate use of diagnostic cardiac imaging and optimization of imaging protocols are high priorities of the profession."

"The Massachusetts Medical Society is honored to receive this grant and participate in this national effort," said Richard Aghababian, MD, President of the society. "We hope that our efforts will contribute to prudent use of testing and better and safer care for patients."

Choosing Wisely was launched in 2012, and since its inception, 25 medical specialty societies have created lists of tests and procedures they say are overused, unnecessary, or potentially harmful. Organizations receiving grants will work on projects to help educate physicians about the recommendations from the specialty groups and help physicians develop skills to have conversations with patients about the care they need.

Other societies awarded grants include the American Academy of Ophthalmology, American College of Physicians, American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Society of Hospital Medicine, American Society of Clinical Pathology, American Society of Echocardiography, and the state medical associations of Minnesota, Oregon, Texas, and Washington state. Ten regional collaboratives were also selected for grants.

The American Society of Nuclear Cardiology (ASNC) is a professional, international non-profit organization, which provides its members with a variety of continuing medical education programs related to nuclear cardiology and cardiovascular computed tomography (CT), promotes accreditation and certification in nuclear cardiology and is the principal advocacy voice for the profession. ASNC is dedicated to continuous quality improvement and patient centered imaging. ASNC's commitment to its members and their patients has positioned the Society as a leader in quality assurance within the nuclear cardiovascular community. ASNC continues to create new partnerships and alliances in an ongoing effort to promote responsible and appropriate imaging within the medical community. For more information, please go to

The Massachusetts Medical Society, with more than 24,000 physicians and student members, is dedicated to education and advocating for the patients and physicians of Massachusetts. The Society publishes the New England Journal of Medicine, a leading global medical journal and web site, and Journal Watch alerts and newsletters covering 13 specialties. The Society is also a leader in continuing medical education for health care professionals throughout Massachusetts, conducting a variety of medical education programs for physicians and health care professionals. Founded in 1781, MMS is the oldest continuously operating medical society in the country. For more information, please visit, or