Celebrating Women’s History Month, ImagineSoftware proudly presented, “You Can’t Spell HEalthcaRe without HER” webinar series, showcasing the inspiring female healthcare professionals that are making a difference in their field. Our guests from diverse backgrounds and countries around the world will be sharing their unique perspectives on how they are navigating the healthcare industry’s challenges, balancing personal and professional lives, and inspiring fellow female leaders to follow their passions – improving patient experiences and beyond! This blog features highlights from the Women in Radiology Webinar.
- Dianne Keen, Vice President of Strategy & Growth with AbbaDox (formerly Radiology Partners when webinar was originally recorded)
- Shannon Wilson - President of Radiology Business Management Association, Associate Director with Group Practice Management
- Dr. Dana Bonaminio - Women Imaging National Subspecialty Lead with Radiology Partners, Lead Breast Imager with Advanced Diagnostic Imaging and Director of Breast Imaging at Ascension Saint Thomas Midtown Center for Breast Health
- Debbie Brannon - Chief Business Development Officer with Austin Radiology
- Cristina Arredondo - Senior Revenue Cycle Manager with SimonMed Imaging (formerly Baptist M&S Imaging when webinar was originally recorded)
- Mia Koroma - Senior Director of Health Policy, Clinical and Practice Affairs Division with the Society of Interventional Radiology
- Nicole Jones Gerbino - Chief Strategy Officer with PBS Radiology
Challenges Women Face in the Healthcare Industry
Women account for 70% of the global health care sector. However, on the executive level, they make up only 25% of the leadership positions. Panelists share the challenges they face as a female, not only in the industry, but as a leader.
"(You need) tenacity. You have to have a voice. You have to learn to stand up for yourself,” states Shannon Wilson, President of Radiology Business Management Association and Associate Director with Group Practice Management.
Shannon also notes that throughout her early career, every opportunity she was given within her career has been from another woman. All panelists agreed mentors, both being a mentor and having a mentor, were paramount to their careers, opportunities, and experiences.
"We can learn so much from the women that came before us...their struggles have created the pathway for us to be so much more and we should be building on that for the next generation to come,” adds Mia Koroma, Senior Director of Health Policy, Clinical and Practice Affairs Division with the Society of Interventional Radiology.
The Future is Female
As more women take on leadership roles in the healthcare industry, there is an enormous potential for positive change. Women often deliver diverse methods of communication, collaboration, and problem-solving – Enhancing leadership teams and leading initiatives, especially improving patient care and patient engagement.
"Having access to (other women) through organizations like SIR and RBMA is bringing women together, like this (webinar)...I did not know Cristina (Arrendondo) before. It expands our network of strong women. We face challenges together..."
- Dianne Keen, Vice President of Strategy & Growth with AbbaDox
"As women we do tend to analyze and see the big picture and multitask...we are accustomed to juggling so many things...when we combine that with asking 'why' and challenging the norm, it helps us to be able to meet some of these changing needs we're seeing in the radiology industry," states Nicole Jones Gerbino, Chief Strategy Officer with PBS Radiology.
Professional and Personal Development
Embracing professional and personal development opportunities is an important aspect of success. Panelists agreed utilizing industry organizations, continuing education, and seeking mentors help guide their own journeys, developing skills and learning from one another experiences.
"...it is about knowing who you are, being able to identify what your values are and making sure that you're living in space, that your values are valued and reconciled with the folks that you're working with or working for," Debbie Brannon states Chief Business Development Officer with Austin Radiology.
Debbie credits her parents for laying a foundation of firm values as well as allowing her to be who she wanted to be. She also talks about how the successful people she has known through her life have shared the trait of "Servant Mindedness." By doing good within the industry, "regardless of what our role is in the organization or in health care", you will find success.
"Advocating for everyone around you or advocating for a higher purpose has helped me a lot in not getting distracted by things that are not important to me or my purpose within an organization."
- Mia Koroma
Senior Director of Health Policy, Clinical and Practice Affairs Division with the Society of Interventional Radiology
"Don't be afraid to walk through the doors that are open for you."
-Dr. Dana Bonaminio
Women Imaging National Subspecialty Lead with Radiology Partners, Lead Breast Imager with Advanced Diagnostic Imaging and Director of Breast Imaging at Ascension Saint Thomas Midtown Center for Breast Health
Dr. Bonaminio talked about the importance of seizing the opportunities in front of you. Even if you do not think you check all the boxes. She urges women to be the leader they are looking for; to “not be afraid to be the only female in the room."
Women Mentoring Women
Throughout the webinar, the impact of mentorships was noted by each of the panelists – being pivotal across all industries, but especially healthcare, increasing women’s impact and leadership roles. As mentors and role models, panelists described the guidance provided both professionally and personally, and the supports to help them reach their career goals.
"We started an executive mentorship program in our company (PBS Radiology) about a year and a half ago...it was so rewarding and amazing to see the growth and the internal growth in our company as a result."
-Nicole Jones Gerbino, PBS Radiology's Chief Strategy Officer
Women represent 75% of PBS Radiology’s Leadership
Nicole Jones Gerbino passionately describes how important mentorship is within an organization. She mentions both formal and informal mentoring and the impact it has especially on those who are quietly struggling and might not be comfortable asking for help. She encourages mentors to look for those individuals and offer their support and knowledge.
Dianne Keen had a similar experience while mentoring other women, "It did something to my heart to be able to be with these young women who needed a mentor and for me to realize that I am in a position now where I can share experiences and share challenges and also help them...to say, 'I will take the heat for you on this. I will protect you, teach you, and help you learn to have your own voice and speak it'...mentoring to these young women was one of the most fulfilling experiences in my career."
The inspiring words of our panelists remind us that by staying true to our values, believing in ourselves, and taking on mentorship roles, we can make a positive impact in the healthcare industry while also achieving success personally and professionally. As women continue to take leadership positions within healthcare organizations, they will be able to create an environment where all genders have equal opportunities for recognition and growth. We should strive to build upon the legacy left by those who came before us so that generations after us may benefit from it too!
Brené Brown, author
Science of People, by Vanessa van Edwards
Adam Grant, podcaster