by Sean Ruck
, Contributing Editor | July 10, 2020
From the July 2020 issue of HealthCare Business News magazine
The Association for Medical Imaging Management (AHRA) will be having its 48th annual meeting as a virtual conference with remote learning and networking opportunities.
HealthCare Business News spoke with AHRA president and Jefferson Health’s enterprise vice president for imaging, lab and pathology, ED & hospital medicine, Chris Tomlinson, MBA, CRA, FAHRA, to learn more about what attendees should expect. Tomlinson spoke about his background, role as the association’s president, and the latest from the organization — including its efforts to create working solutions to address the COVID-19 pandemic.
HCB News: Who or what inspired you to follow a career in healthcare?
I had a non-traditional career path as an imaging leader. When I graduated from college, I pursued a career in consulting. Within the consulting practice, I started to focus on healthcare. I used to travel all over the country and a little internationally within healthcare. I did that for a number of years and developed my skills and consulting expertise and then decided to shift into the hospital provider setting. I worked for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for about 10 years, playing a number of roles in imaging, but generally in the healthcare delivery space. I got introduced to radiology both in my consulting career and as I managed a radiology department, a physician practice, a teleradiology offering and some other experiences. But having never been a technologist, which is a different experience than many of the AHRA’s past presidents, means I look at things from a different perspective.
HCB News: How long have you been a member of the AHRA?
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I’ve been a member 13 years.
HCB News: Why did you join the association?
As I got into radiology and started to run departments, both by research and word of mouth, I understood that AHRA was the professional organization of choice for folks in imaging management. I used the AHRA to really gain specific skills around radiology – understanding the intricacies of running a department as well as developing a good industry network around best practice. AHRA also offered the ability to call peers and lean on them when you have questions or when you run into certain problems. So it was a way of connecting into that social and professional network to embrace the direction in which I was going, which was the radiology space. Having been a consultant, you learn how to run big operations, but a lot of the subject matter specific to imaging was what drew me to the AHRA.