Welcome to 2014! I'm starting my year as NACB President by thanking the people who have been here before me. I am truly lucky to be following such a wonderful group of people as President of AACC's Academy. They have built a strong foundation for us to move forward upon. And while I'm thanking people, a huge thank you goes to the Evidence Based Laboratory Medicine (EBLM) group. Through their hard work and efforts, we have a new Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for writing Laboratory Medicine Practice Guidelines (LMPGs). Using this new SOP, our two newest LMPGs on pain management and HCG testing are making rapid progress, and discussions are already proceeding for additional LMPGs.
In the past LMPGs were geared predominantly toward AACC members, to provide us with guidelines in our daily practice. Now however, the focus of the AACC has turned toward being more visible as an organization and helping AACC members become more visible and integrated as medical professionals in their workplaces. In that regard AACC is working to build new bridges and collaborations with Clinical Societies. The NACB is evolving right along with AACC, and that includes our LMPGs. Rather than LMPGs which are focused mostly or solely on our own members, the Academy is working hard to produce guidelines geared toward the clinical societies which utilize laboratory testing and can benefit from guidance by laboratory professionals. To that end, the new SOP recommends members of clinical societies be part of each LMPG committee. There has also been some thought that each LMPG committee should be required to work with a clinical society to produce the LMPG, (i.e. Endocrine Society, ADA), rather than simply have members of the LMPG committee be members of a clinical society. If this is a requirement, an LMPG then could not be written without a clinical society buy-in. As one person said to me in paraphrase: do we need a guideline if it doesn't apply to a clinical issue? After discussion it was decided to leave it to the NACB leadership and the new SOP to strongly encourage the clinical society participation, rather than requiring something that may not always be necessary. I would be interested in the feelings of other Academy members on this topic, so perhaps I'll blog on it.
A rousing success in the area of clinical society collaborations in 2013 was the Beckman Conference. This year the Beckman Conference was organized in collaboration with the American Society for Nephrology (ASN). It was held in conjunction with their meeting, and had their buy-in and their participation on the organizing committee. The Conference was not only a commercial success, ending up with more registrants than it was budgeted for, but it also introduced many nephrologists to clinical laboratorians, and increased the likelihood that they will work with us on future conferences. These are all wins in the visibility column for the AACC and its members. The Academy will follow this successful model on our future Beckman conferences, with the next one already in the planning stages.
These are two topics that are high on NACB's radar as we start this new year. I'm excited to be NACB President for 2014 and am looking forward to a year of hard work, and to moving the Academy forward, providing the AACC with expertise and insight as we grow and evolve.
Patti Jones PhD, DABCC, FACB
NACB President, 2014
Composed of leading scientists, NACB is dedicated to advancing the science and practice of laboratory medicine. We do this in three ways: by advocating for scholarship through scientific research; by promoting scientific discovery, application, and integration through our educational programs; and by publishing Laboratory Medicine Practice Guidelines (LMPG), our signature program, which applies clinical biochemistry to medical diagnosis and therapy.
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We invite AACC members who are doctoral-level clinical scientists, hold ABCC certification or other certification acceptable to the Academy, and are active in the research, education, or service of clinical biochemistry to apply for membership. Learn more.