ACR Announces Leadership, Humanitarian Awards

By News Release

At its annual meeting, ACR2022, the American College of Radiology (ACR) announced Robert Zeman, MD, FACR, FSAR, as the 2022 recipient of the William T. Thorwarth Jr., MD, Award, and Kassa Darge, MD, PhD, and David H. Epstein, MD, FACR as recipients of the 2022 Global Humanitarian Award.

The William T. Thorwarth Jr., MD, Award recognizes individuals who demonstrate outstanding contributions to the field of health policy and economics for radiology. Dr. Zeman is a Professor and Chairman of Radiology and Radiation Oncology at the George Washington University School of Medicine.

“Dr. Zemanʼs contributions within the ACR, specifically his commitment to the Contractor Advisory Committee Network, as well as his involvement at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and other organizations, has helped amplify the voice of radiology,” said Gregory Nicola, MD, FACR, Chair of the ACR Commission on Economics. “He continues to give back by educating future generations of radiologists and I am honored to present him with this prestigious award.”

Dr. Zeman is receiving the award for 17 years of dedicated service in various capacities on the ACR Commission on Economics, including Chair of the Contractor Advisory Committee Network. He was an integral voice in national and local Medicare coverage determinations for many imaging services, including computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography policies. Dr. Zeman served as a voting member of the CMS Medicare Evidence Development and Coverage Advisory Committee Panel for four years.

The William T. Thorwarth Jr., MD, Award was established in 2004 by the ACR Commission on Economics to honor members or staff who show excellence in the field of economics and health policy by way of leadership, diplomacy and integrity.

The Global Humanitarian Award honors individuals who have had a positive global impact on radiology services.

“The 2022 ACR Foundation Global Humanitarian Award recipients are pillars of the global radiological community and have earned our respect for their e orts to provide better health outcomes for citizens of underserved countries,” said Dana H. Smetherman, MD, MPH, MBA, FACR, Chair of the ACR Foundation Executive Committee. “The ACR Foundation also recognizes the work that Drs. Darge and Epstein have done to educate and train radiologists across the globe. Their e orts have enabled more radiologists to learn techniques that will help save lives.”

Dr. Darge has been a leader in international medical outreach for more than 30 years, 20 of which have been dedicated to pediatric radiology outreach. His outreach is primarily centered in Ethiopia, caring for more than 150,000 pediatric patients at Black Lion Hospital in Addis Ababa. His medical outreach also extends to Liberia, Ghana, South Africa, Brazil and Eastern Europe.

Among his work, Dr. Darge points to the creation of a first-of-its-kind pediatric radiology fellowship outreach program accredited by the Addis Ababa University as one of his greatest accomplishments. The two-year program includes on-site training through rotating international pediatric radiology faculty, distance learning supported by an educational team from Childrenʼs Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), a three-month observership at CHOP and mentored research concluding with a board exam. He also continues to support the residency program with a CME course dedicated to pediatric radiology, held annually in collaboration with the Radiological Society of Ethiopia.

Dr. Epstein has worked for eight years with the Global Surgical and Medical Support Group, a nonprofit that provides medical care and training in places such as Honduras, Panama and Iraq. The programs in Panama and Honduras were performed in remote areas with Global Brigades, primarily for pre-med students with physician oversight and participation in general clinic work. Dr. Epstein provided general clinic care and was also able to utilize diagnostic ultrasound for over 300 patients in the two one-week programs.

The Iraq program began in 2015 in the Kurdish Region when ISIS was less than 30 miles west of Baghdad and the medical system was overwhelmed. Dr. Epstein assisted with direct care to Iraqi security forces, citizens and refugees. He performed more than 100 image-guided procedures and worked side-by-side doing procedures with other radiologists. He has given more than 30 lectures and workshops to medical sta  and has also generously donated medical supplies to Iraqi doctors and patients.

The ACR Foundation Global Humanitarian Award recognizes outstanding individuals, organizations and programs working to improve access to and equitable delivery of quality radiological services in low-and middle-income countries and in areas of need within more developed nations.

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ACR Announces Leadership, Humanitarian Awards.  Appl Radiol. 

By News Release| April 26, 2022
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