The name may be Radiological Society of North America, but the society has seen major growth from outside North America during the last 10 years in both membership and attendance at its annual meeting, according to RSNA president Dr. Brian C. Lentle.
"When one examines the absolute numbers, to steal a concept from cell biology, the doubling times in North American and international attendance are about 36 and 13 years, respectively, based on marginal trends observed in the most recent decade," Lentle said in Sunday's opening address.
This year is no exception. The number of preregistered North American professionals as of mid-November was up 7%, while non-North American professionals had increased by 11%.
Abstract submissions to the annual meeting reflect the same trend, with a steady increase in international contributions. In 2002 and 2003, submissions topped the 5000 mark, while dipping just below that number this year. Overall, non-North American submissions have increased 30% in since 1997, Lentle said.
In contrast, totals of accepted papers from North America from 1993 to 2003 have remained largely unchanged.
Most papers accepted from outside the continent come from Western Europe, followed by the Far East. But the number of countries submitting papers has also increased, from 32 in 1993 to 48 in 2003.
The RSNA journal Radiology has seen an upswing in the amount of international manuscripts submitted as well, from less than 50% in 1998 to more than 60% last year.
"These trends have all occurred without an aggressive plan by RSNA to promote itself beyond the boundaries of this continent," Lentle said.