- Category: About ICUS
Since its launch in 2008, ICUS has moved to the forefront of CEUS education, advocacy and communications.
With an Executive Board and membership representing the world’s experts in CEUS, along with an engaged team of public policy and communications advisers, ICUS has provided comprehensive, scientifically-grounded information about CEUS to government agencies and media outlets in order to advance the interests of patients in obtaining safe, reliable and cost-effective diagnostic imaging. This work includes:
REGULATORY BRIEFINGS (FDA, CMS, AHRQ) -- ICUS has provided professional society briefings, position papers, and scientific materials on the safety and clinical utility of CEUS to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Coverage and Analysis Group, and Agency for Health Care Research and Quality.
REIMBURSEMENT -- ICUS is actively engaged with CMS on issues relating to reimbursement for use of ultrasound contrast agents based on Medicare HOPPS (hospital outpatient) payment rules.
PRESS RELEASES -- ICUS press releases have been picked up by some 250 news agencies (each) worldwide, including mainstream media outlets as well as trade publications and websites.
ICAEL ACCREDITATION -- ICUS worked with the Intersocietal Commission on Accreditation of Echocardiography Laboratories (ICAEL) in support of the first inclusion of CEUS in new accreditation standards for echocardiography laboratories in the U.S. Those standards now, for the first time, require use of ultrasound contrast agents to enhance images under certain defined circumstances. This recognizes the important role of ultrasound contrast agents in improving the accuracy of diagnostic ultrasound imaging.
GLOBAL PRACTICE STANDARDS -- ICUS is collaborating on the development of global practice standards for use of CEUS in liver imaging, at the request of the World Federation for Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology (WFUMB).
COMPARATIVE EFFECTIVENESS TECHNOLOGY ASSESSMENT -- ICUS successfully prompted the inclusion of CEUS in a forthcoming “comparative effectiveness” technology assessment focused on the diagnosis of women with chest pain. In fact, ICUS was able to assemble scientific data and produce a persuasive document for submission to AHRQ in only three days notice.
ICUS WEEKLY NEWS MONITORS -- ICUS produces weekly email updates containing articles about the latest developments in the CEUS field. ICUS Weekly News Monitors are emailed each Friday to all ICUS members free of charge.
ANNUAL “BUBBLE CONFERENCES” -- ICUS sponsors two annual “bubble conferences” focused on advances in the CEUS field. One is held each Fall in Chicago and the other is held each January in Rotterdam. Both conferences have expanded opportunities for communication regarding CEUS progress and challenges, networking, collaboration, and energizing the field.
INTERNATIONAL, MULTI-DISCIPLINARY COMMUNICATIONS -- ICUS has opened channels of ongoing communication and collaboration across geographical boundaries and medical sub-specialties. Serving as a unique bridge between diverse constituencies, ICUS makes possible the global cross-fertilization of ideas among CEUS experts in cardiology, radiology, vascular medicine, hepatology, and other imaging fields, including academic researchers, practicing physicians, engineers, industry representatives and others.
STRATEGIC PLAN -- The ICUS Strategic Plan anticipates further expansion of this work worldwide.
ALLIED ORGANIZATIONS -- ICUS has formalized relationships and exchanges liaisons with other professional societies in order to advance patient interests worldwide.
PRO-BONO SERVICES -- SNR Denton, an international law firm, has determined that ICUS furthers the public interest in safe, cost-effective health care. Accordingly, ICUS receives numerous services from SNR Denton on a pro bono basis, in accordance with the firm’s commitment to public service.