SICP: Chapter Spotlight

The Society of Invasive Cardiovascular Professionals (SICP) Wisconsin Chapter

Contributions from Erwin Wuehr, WI-SICP Chapter Chair
Contributions from Erwin Wuehr, WI-SICP Chapter Chair
The SICP has several established and developing chapters across the country. Chapters offer networking opportunities and grassroots advocacy opportunities for current issues in the invasive cardiovascular profession. They also offer a great way to keep members up-to-date on ongoing membership developments. Belonging to a chapter is an excellent way to become more involved in your professional society, advocating and promoting the invasive cardiovascular profession. The SICP is offering chapter spotlights to inform our members of each chapter’s ongoing activities and accomplishments. When was the Wisconsin Chapter (WI-SICP) established? There had been a “standalone” group, the Wisconsin Society of Cardiovascular Professional (WSCVP). That group held a number of annual meetings, but due to a lack of leadership participation, folded after a few years. The Wisconsin Chapter was started in 2005 when a group of cath lab managers, nurses and technologists met to discuss the need to bring back a local professional organization, but this time it was decided to join with the national SICP and become a state chapter. What facilities are involved in this chapter? The WI-SICP has created a network of liaisons from almost every cath lab in the state. This way we will have input from all areas of Wisconsin. (If your facility has not been contacted and you would like to be involved, please contact us at wuehre@matc.edu) How many members does the chapter currently have? Currently, we have 54 members. Our by-laws state that every WI-SICP member must also be a member of the national SICP. What is the focus of the Wisconsin Chapter? The focus of the WI-SICP is to provide continuing education and a networking opportunity for our members. We have hosted three annual educational conferences and are currently working on our fourth. Future plans include having quarterly meetings spread throughout the state and a website. What challenges are you currently facing? The challenges are many! First, as with any new organization, building membership is a priority. We certainly would like to grow, because as we grow, so will the profession. The second and perhaps biggest challenge, is finding people who are willing to serve on the board. We, the current board members, are approaching the end of our terms; no one is stepping forward to replace us. Lastly, we seek to provide value for membership to the WI-SICP, specifically, in choosing relevant topics for our educational conferences. What have you accomplished thus far? Our annual educational conference is our greatest achievement. We have been able to bring cardiovascular professionals from across the state to the Wisconsin Dells (a vacation area) for education and workshops, while offering SICP and ASRT CEUs for our members. We have distributed a survey to those who have volunteered to be our liaisons around the state, gaining feedback on the educational needs of our members. What are your strengths as a chapter? Definitely the board! There could not be a better group of more dedicated people than I have ever had the privilege to work with. Everyone has work, family and life responsibilities, but at the same time, is completely devoted to this cause and has spent countless hours to ensure that this society is successful. Please allow me to list them: Erwin Wuehr is chair, Stephanie Hillmann is the chair-elect, Christian Rabetski is the secretary, Ann Russart is the treasurer, Heather Vardon is the immediate past president, Sue Jassak is past treasurer and member of the education committee and Duane Huelse is a member of the education committee. What are your chapter goals? To continue to grow, attract new members who want to serve, and to expand our educational meetings to offer quarterly meetings around the state. What advocacy issues are you experiencing in Wisconsin? Do these differ facility-to-facility? We believe that it is critical for all cath lab techs to be registered cardiovascular invasive specialist (RCIS)-registered. It really makes no sense as to why nurses are required to be registered nurses, but cath lab technologists are not. What would you like the public to know about the RCIS profession? The RCIS credential provides a high standard of understanding in the care of the cardiovascular patient. At this time, these professionals are self-motivated to prove their knowledge, because this registry is not a requirement. These individuals should be given quite a bit of credit for their dedication to the profession. What can SICP do for our members? Provide a means for state chapters to work together. For example, when a chapter elects new officers, send out an email notifying the other chapters of the new officers’ contact information. What would you like to see SICP offer as part of the membership? Provide a discussion board on their website for members to ask questions and receive answers regarding issues that, I’m sure, are of a concern to all labs (Joint Commission, emerging technologies, medical coding, etc.) Have an informational site that has updates on issues such as the CARE bill or the changes in the RCIS examination. Maybe it could also offer some CEUs on a quarterly basis as part of Cath Lab Digest [Ed. note: Free CEUs are available on www.naccme.com]. Has your chapter hosted the SICP’s Signature RCIS Review Course? We have discussed it, but a local hospital, in conjunction with one of the vendors, routinely sponsors one that many of the members attend. How many of your chapter members hold the RCIS designation? The exact number is unknown, but I would expect about half of the members are RCIS registered. Who is your chapter’s Advocacy Committee representative? Erwin Wuehr, incoming WI-SICP chapter chair. Erwin can be contacted at wuehre@matc.edu.
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