Merrill Award Returns to Celebrate Emory's Outstanding Radiographers

April 14, 2017

The Merrill Award returns this spring to celebrate Emory Radiology’s x-ray technologists for exemplary imaging quality and patient care.

The Merrill Award first launched in 2012 as an initiative of the Computed Radiography/Digital Radiography (CD/DR) Committee. After a successful two-year run, the program went on hiatus until earlier this year, when the CR/DR Committee, chaired by cardiothoracic radiologist Eugene Berkowitz, MD, elected to reinstate the program.

The goal today remains the same as in 2012.

“We hope to motivate x-ray technologists to aim for optimal image quality while ensuring patient safety and service excellence,” explains Aurora Marinescu, RT(R), who co-chairs the selection committee with William Haralson, RT(R).

The award recognizes the highest quality image submitted for the monthly competition. To be considered, a tech may self-nominate or someone else—radiologist, supervisor, or even another tech—may nominate a radiographer’s image. Nominations are due by the last day of the month and should be sent by email to the Merrill Award Selection Committee member representing the tech’s location (see list below). The three highest scoring images from each site then are sent to the full committee for a new round of scoring. The highest scoring image wins for that month.

Monthly winners will enjoy the spotlight in the Rad Report as well as their choice of two tickets to Zoo Atlanta or the Georgia Aquarium, or two Stone Mountain Adventure Passes. Monthly winners then will be entered into a drawing at the end of the year; the winner of that drawing will receive funding to attend the educational conference of his/her choice.

Winners receive much more than these tangible perks, according to Haralson. “As a past winner myself, I can say that the award means more than you might think.  To me, it signified that someone noticed my hard work and took the time to nominate me and recognize me for it.  Also, it’s nice to know administration is on board and wishes for this program to succeed in order to recognize staff for the quality of their work.”

Eight Emory Healthcare sites are participating in the Merrill Award program. The locations and the technologists representing them on the Merrill Award Selection Committee are Emory University Hospital (William Haralson and Aurora Marinescu), Emory University Hospital Midtown (Michael Panas), Winship Cancer Institute (Veena Rajeevan and Eric Edmondson), Emory Orthopaedic and Spine Center at Executive Park (Jason Smitherman), Emory University Orthopaedics and Spine Hospital (Kelli Fore), Emory Imaging Center at McDonough (Purvi Shah), Emory Saint Joseph Hospital (Wilbert, Pope), and Emory Johns Creek Hospital (John Stefanie).