Fessell: When people are making the transition from serving as
division director to chair or taking a step up in the leadership, a
change that can be hard to handle is the feeling of, “I can do it
better myself, so I’m going to jump in and take over.” How do you
pull back and let the process unfold so that everyone can be involved, and you can ultimately get to a better place than if just one
person was always doing it?
Meltzer: That is always an issue. You have to constantly check
yourself. The thing that I really rely on is having trusted colleagues
within the department. I’m always reminding them that I want their
feedback. I try to be aware of what my weak points are and say, “I
may get inpatient with this issue. Please tell me on the side if I do
that—give me a wake-up call and I’ll do the same for you.”
Fessell: Do you have a favorite story about lessons learned in
your leadership journey?
Meltzer: When I first became chair, I had a couple of difficult fac-
ulty issues to deal with and I spent an inordinate amount of time and
emotional energy dealing with those difficult performers. It really
took time and energy away from focusing on those who were highly
engaged. I’ve gotten much better about balancing that with cele-
brating the good. Now I focus more on making sure my leadership
Road to Leadership continued from p. 19 team knows what they’re accountable for and responsible for so we
can move forward. That comes with experience. There is a certain
point when you’ve seen every kind of difficult personnel issue in
some form or another. I have worked to deal with these kinds of
things as a normal course of events, rather than taking it personally.
Fessell: How did you make the transition from spending a lot
more time than you wanted to on the difficulty personalities or difficult people? Did you say, “I’m going to make quicker decisions
about letting those people go,” or delegate that to somebody else?
Meltzer: It was a combination of things. We developed a better
system and better human resources support and also developed
a clearer sense of a fair and transparent process of giving faculty
who don’t perform well all the opportunities possible to correct
their course. But if they don’t, then we make a change.
Fessell: You mentioned earlier that you do yoga and really try to
be conscious about taking time to renew yourself and to renew
your energy. Are there other specific ways you do that?
Meltzer: Yes, I do a lot of cycling and I love hiking, I like the out-
doors and travel. I also spend my off time quite a bit with photog-
raphy. I’ve been fortunate to have my work shown in a number of
galleries, which has been really fun.n
radiologist into the clinical team. “The VC seemed to be of par-
ticular value in contexts when time, location, and other circum-
stance would make a conventional consultation difficult, as well
as to be of value as a vehicle for achieving a quick response to
particular question,” the JACR article said.
Emergency room physicians found having access to a specialized radiologist particularly helpful. “A benefit of the VC in the
emergency department (ED) setting was the ability of the ED
physician to use the VC tool to contact a radiologist shortly after
completion of the examination, before official interpretation and
dictation of the study,” the JACR article said.
In NYU’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and
Congenital Cardiovascular Care Unit (CCVCU), Recht and other
researchers piloted a separate virtual radiology rounds program
[ 2]. Again, it was Recht’s opinion that when radiologists don’t participate in traditional hospital rounds, the referring physician and
patients miss out on the value radiologists bring to the team.
Traditional or Nontraditional Rounds
The VC option has proven effective as a method of enabling
radiologists to rejoin the traditional radiology rounds that most
senior physicians participated in early in their careers. As noted
in a study titled “Virtual Radiology Rounds: Adding Value in the
Digital Era” [ 2], Recht was among the researchers who analyzed
the use of remote-sharing radiology workstations in which participants discussed images by speakerphone.
Virtual Consultation continued from p. 5
Radiology rounds are no longer as common, largely because
PACS promote geographic separation of radiologists and referring
clinicians. “It’s hard to get everyone together, particularly in community hospitals where radiologists are covering remotely. In
some settings, they’ve nearly disappeared,” said Larson. By failing
to engage radiologists in such meetings, referring physicians are
losing the personal interactions that facilitate team-based solving.
Study authors found favorable results among participating
physicians who noted improved patient care and the learning opportunity that naturally occurs during the discussion of a patient. The study, published in Pediatric Radiology, concluded that
the “innovation of virtual radiology rounds offers a viable alternative to traditional radiology rounds” [ 2].n
1. Rosenkrantz AB, Sherwin J, Prithiani CP, Ostrow D, Recht MP.
Technologyassisted virtual consultation for medical imaging. J Am Coll Radiol
2. Fefferman NR, Strubel NA, Prithiani C, Chakravarti S, Caprio M, Recht MP.
Virtual radiology rounds: adding value in the digital era. Pediatr Radiol 2016
Apr 3 [Epub ahead of print]
Real-time, screen-sharing communication has
greatly reduced the hassle of inconvenient
phone calls, voice messages, and delayed