A Message from AVF President, Elna M. Masuda, MD
The American Venous Forum continues to flourish as a strong, robust professional organization which strives to improve venous and lymphatic care through innovative research, education and advocacy. As a growing organization, change is something we need to expect, whether it involves reimbursement, new diagnostics, advances in technology, or changing criteria for appropriateness given current technology and scientific evidence. As we enter the new season for the AVF, we can look forward to an exciting year filled with implementations of initiatives that will address many of these ongoing changes.
We are working together tirelessly to expand on the following key initiatives:
- Advocacy: Through our Health Care Policy committee, the AVF has been proactive in addressing multiple Medicare local coverage determinations, and responding to reimbursement challenges regarding ultrasound coverage. By meeting with leaders of CMS Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, healthcare policy groups, and private insurers the AVF will continue to play an active role in addressing coverage issues.
- Multimedia services: featuring RELAUNCHING NEW WEBSITE DESIGN going LIVE in summer of 2018. The website will provide refined navigation and faster page load times. Its new design will optimize on smart mobile devices since over 80% use their smart devices to access the website.
- Membership benefits include:
- Complimentary yearly subscription to the Official Journal of the American Venous Forum: the Journal of Vascular Surgery Venous and Lymphatic Disorders (JVS-VL), edited by Peter Gloviczki and Peter F. Lawrence
- Member specific registration rates for the AVF Annual meeting in Palm Springs CA in 2019.
- Up to date email announcements on progress pertaining to Advocacy, Health Care Policies and local coverage determinations, and publication of clinical guidelines.
- Educational Programs: Featuring four educational conferences held throughout the year including the Annual AVF Meeting in Palm Springs California, February 19-22, 2019, two Fellows courses, and West Coast Vein Forum in 2019.
- Clinical Guidelines: Guidelines on Compression after intervention, Venous ultrasound and EHIT are well underway and we look forward to publications in the next year.
- Research: Through the Research committee, applicants for the BSN Jobst grant are potential recipients of the $100,000 grant for original work in basic or clinical research in venous or lymphatic disease. The Servier Travel Grant presents an opportunity for young researchers (trainees) to present their research in Europe and promote scientific and educational exchange.
- This year, the committee is excited to publish the long anticipated consensus for basic science animal model on thrombosis.
- Administrative services: Our commitment is to improve and maintain our administrative services and provide responsive, reliable services across all levels of our organization.
- AVF Foundation (AVFF): Our new AVFF Director of Mission Advancement Jeffrey Mendola together with AVFF president Lowell Kabnick and the BOD are organizing a new campaign of “Healthy veins for Healthy Lives” as an initiative for 2018.
- Collaboration: with several professional organizations who share common core values and interests in venous disease.
- Ethics Task Force: The AVF encourages our leaders and members to practice at the highest standard of care for our venous and lymphatic patients. By raising ethical awareness through development of the AVF code of ethics (the AVF Pledge) we support our members to aspire toward the highest level of professionalism and integrity.
- International membership: At the annual meeting, the international committee has developed an international session with English to Spanish translation. We will continue to expand our collaborative exchanges with other international societies and meetings.
- Publications: Handbook of Venous and Lymphatic Disorders, 4th edition. Edited by Peter Gloviczki and contributing authors consisting of AVF members. Awarded by the British Medical Association in 2017 for its exceptional quality amongst surgical specialty textbooks.
Other new exciting areas of development:
- Development of the Early Career Advisory Committee for promoting our early career providers with career opportunities and education.
- CEAP revisited 2018-2019.
The vision of the AVF and its leaders is to develop new and effective ways of organizing and implementing our initiatives to keep up with changes in healthcare policy coverage, changes in new technology and research, and communicate using the latest multimedia modalities.
We are well poised as a unified professional organization who care deeply for our patients. Together, let us continue to advance the mission our AVF founders initiated 31 years ago, and let us usher in a new era of better venous and lymphatic care for our patients through improved venous awareness, data-driven quality evidence, appropriate use of advanced technology, and application of the latest scientific knowledge to provide optimal care for our venous and lymphatic patients.
I look forward to serving as your President this year and on behalf of the American Venous Forum Board of Directors we thank you for your support as we strive to fulfill our strategic goals for the upcoming year.
Elna M. Masuda, MD
President of the American Venous Forum