Goal: To link inexperienced and experienced RAs to the identified resources, including those available through ACRIN Headquarters and the American College of Radiology, necessary to carry out their responsibilities.
The RAs working on ACRIN trials are varied in background, expertise, and clinical experience. More often than not, new RAs are left to “learn as they go” with little or no mechanism in place to serve as a resource of clinical research information. The new RA may need instruction on general IRB submission procedures or even on something as basic as the establishing case files.
The Networking and Communication Subcommittee (NCS) compiles an overall ACRIN RA list, identifying individuals’ research experience, professional background and core of competency, interest in participating as a point of contact, and geographic location that is used for the following purposes:
- To formalize a contact list for the field RAs that is defined according to geographic location and core of contact
- To make such a contact list available to all RAs by way of an ACRIN Web site link.
- Communication with the research associates and committee members occurs bi-annually at the scheduled ACRIN meetings.
- Key committee and subcommittee members interact by means of quarterly or “as needed” conference calls to discuss the functions and future endeavors of the RA group.
- Communication is fostered through dissemination of the ACRIN Research Associates Newsletter, which includes information about the RA Committee, ACRIN protocol status, semiannual meeting reports, points of contact, and RA professional interests. The newsletter is made available through a broadcast e-mail to all affiliated researchers and through a link on the ACRIN Web site (see "materials" section under the RA Committee section).
- An electronic “list server” provides a method of global communication.
- The committee works closely with other subcommittees (e.g., Education, Mentoring, and QA) in order to relate committee updates as well as ACRIN news in an expedient and accurate manner to the field RAs.