On Friday, April 21, AACC held a member vote on the proposal to change the name of the association from AACC to the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM).
The association is pleased to report that when final votes were tabulated, the motion was carried. More than 500 members registered to vote on this historic decision and the name change motion passed decisively, with more than a two-thirds majority voting to approve AACC becoming the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM).
This change will occur at the 2023 AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo. After the new brand is publicly launched at the meeting, the association will initially operate as the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM), formerly AACC.
In the meantime, we understand that many of you may still be wondering how AACC’s Board of Directors reached the decision to change our name from AACC to the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM). This is a significant change, and it may seem sudden to some. We want to assure you that the Board carefully and thoughtfully deliberated on this decision over the course of several years.
To provide some clarity on the process, here’s a brief overview of the steps taken by the Board to arrive at this new name.
A TIMELINE OF THE JOURNEY FROM AACC TO ADLM
2019: AACC rolls out an ambitious and far-reaching strategic plan to ensure that the association keeps meeting the needs and professional interests of our diverse membership base. A key element of the strategic plan is expanding the association’s brand so that it is inclusive of all who work in or with the clinical lab. This is not a change in direction so much as an effort to reflect an evolution within the field and the association that has long been underway.
2020-2021: The Board conducts a two-year strategic plan discovery process. A key finding that comes out of this is the realization that AACC’s name might need to adapt to better represent the more inclusive, collaborative organization that we’ve become.
2022: AACC researches potential alternative names. To do this, the association collaborates with two research firms to test 11 name options with multiple different focus groups. These focus groups include members, non-members who attended the AACC Annual Scientific Meeting, non-members new to AACC, international Annual Scientific Meeting attendees, Corporate Advisory Board members, government/policy groups, and AACC volunteer leaders.
One of the names that performs best in all of these research cohorts is the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM). Participants in the focus groups gravitate toward this name because it embodies the current identity of the association and the future we aspire to—and also because of its clarity. The majority feel that ADLM will make it easier to communicate about our association and field with other clinical staff, government agencies, and the public.
December 2022: The AACC Board of Directors considers several options tested with the focus groups and unanimously votes to change the name of the organization to the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM).
April 21, 2023: All eligible AACC members are given the opportunity to vote on whether or not to make the name change official. More than 500 members register to vote on this historic decision and the name change motion passes decisively, with more than a two-thirds majority voting to approve AACC becoming the Association for Diagnostics & Laboratory Medicine (ADLM).
July 23, 2023: The new name will formally launch at the 2023 AACC Annual Scientific Meeting & Clinical Lab Expo, marking the start of an exciting brand transition for the organization that will unfold over the next several years.
A NOTE FOR THE CLINICAL CHEMISTS
Though the name change and rebranding will affect the association and members in a variety of ways, it’s important to emphasize that—with membership including more than 85% of total DABCC diplomates in addition to many others boarded in clinical chemistry—ADLM will remain the professional home for clinical chemists. From our annual meeting and publications content to our educational events and webinars, clinical chemistry will continue to be the lynchpin of our offerings and ADLM will carry on as the essential community for laboratory experts to network and be around the people in our field.
For example, we will continue using member feedback and the needs assessment surveys to guide the Education Core Committee and the Annual Meeting Organizing Committee in developing educational content for our annual meeting. Our leaders will continue to be selected by the nominating committee, who are individuals the membership elects.
Of course, clinical chemists have always constituted the core of our membership, and as a result we expect the association to continue advocating vigorously for them and their interests. The name change is a way to acknowledge what we’re already doing under the pillars of our strategic plan and make sure that the wider world of clinical laboratorians understands that we have valuable content and expertise that is relevant to them, while removing barriers from their participation or engagement due to our name.
The name change makes a bold and public statement, but as mentioned above, it does not represent a change of direction for the organization. Instead, it more accurately reflects who we are today. Over the years, AACC’s programs have grown to serve other specialty areas working in or adjacent to the clinical lab, and the new name was chosen to better represent this—to broaden our invitation to collaborate, not narrow it.
This new name offers us a different way of talking about ourselves, but the organization’s vision remains the same: better health through laboratory medicine.