A radiology sub-specialty is emerging as distinct medical specialty, separate from the traditional revenue-generating imaging-based model of service.
Two years ago, the American Board of Medical Specialties elevated interventional radiology from a subspecialty of radiology to a primary medical specialty.
The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education is currently developing the residency program requirements for the new dual interventional radiology/diagnostic radiology (IR/DR) certificate that will replace the vascular interventional radiology (VIR) subspecialty certificate.
Accreditation of the first IR residencies for the new IR/DR specialty is likely to begin in July 2015.
As the final details are getting worked out, the President of the Society of Interventional Radiology, James Spies, MD, FSIR, and an interventional radiologist and chair of the radiology department at MedStar Georgetown University Hospital and professor of radiology at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C., says the move will give interventional radiologists more visibility among fellow physicians and patients.
"The elevation of interventional radiology to a specialty level with its own distinct residency program places IR on the same level as surgery, pediatrics, and internal medicine in the ABMS hierarchy and brings recognition and validation to a specialty that has had a hugely positive impact on the practice of medicine."