Professor Valerie P. Jackson from Tucson, Arizona, USA, is the immediate past president of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) and an accomplished radiologist who has helped advance her specialty. She will receive ESR Honorary Membership at ECR 2020, in recognition of her many achievements, particularly in breast imaging and radiology education.

Valerie P. Jackson, MD, FACR, is the Eugene C. Klatte Professor Emeritus of Radiology at Indiana University School of Medicine, in Indianapolis, Indiana. She served on the faculty in numerous roles between 1982 and 2014 and was the Chair of Indiana University’s radiology department from 2003 to May 2014.

Professor Valerie P. Jackson from Tucson, Arizona, USA.

She is the Executive Director of the American Board of Radiology (ABR) and a Past President of the Society of Breast Imaging (SBI) and the American College of Radiology (ACR).

Jackson has been involved in research, education and leadership for more than three decades, primarily in the areas of breast imaging and radiology education. She was an author and editor for two editions of Diagnosis of Diseases of the Breast, a major textbook on breast imaging.

Throughout her career, she has seen breast imaging bloom into the booming field it is today.

“Huge strides have been made in breast imaging over the past few decades,” she said. “Digital mammography has replaced film-screen mammography throughout the United States, and the more recent development of digital breast tomosynthesis has improved cancer detection rates while reducing false positive rates. The breast radiologist has become the primary clinician for breast evaluation, and this will continue in the future.”

Despite mounting evidence of the value of breast screening, the US still has no national or state breast cancer screening programmes. Organisations such as the American Cancer Society and the American College of Radiology have shared screening guidelines, but it is up to individual women and their healthcare providers to participate in screening.

“The American College of Radiology recommends annual screening for all women, beginning at age 40, with no specific age to end screening, as that depends on the health status of the individual woman,” she said.

Jackson identifies a number of issues facing radiologists in the United States today, starting with the unprecedented rate of change in radiology technology that makes it difficult for radiologists to stay up to date.

“Workloads have dramatically increased in the past decade and referring physicians expect faster and faster turn-around times for reports. High volumes may impact quality and reduce the time for radiologists to interact with referring physicians, patients and their families,” she said.

In her role as RSNA president, Jackson’s focus was on continuing the society’s success as a preeminent source of education, research and innovation in medical imaging. “We’ve expanded the Virtual Meeting to offer more options for attendees during and after the annual meeting. We’ve grown and diversified our education offerings, and we launched three new online journals in 2019, most recently Radiology: Imaging Cancer,” she said.

Under her leadership, RSNA has also expanded the AI showcase, to reflect the increasingly important role played by artificial intelligence (AI) in clinical care.

Jackson values the bond between European and North American radiologists. “The relationship between us is excellent. There are many collaborative initiatives involving radiologists from both continents,” she said.

Jackson has authored more than 110 publications and numerous book chapters and has given over 500 presentations. She has served as a manuscript reviewer for numerous journals, including the American Journal of Roentgenology, Journal of the American College of Radiology and Radiology, for which she also acted as associate editor on the editorial board and as a consultant to the editor.

She has been awarded Gold Medals by the Indiana Radiological Society, SBI, ACR, and the Association of University Radiologists.

At ECR 2020, Professor Valerie P. Jackson will be presented with ESR Honorary Membership.