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Sociedad Radiológica de Puerto Rico By-laws
Article I – Name
The name of this organization shall be the Sociedad Radiológica de Puerto Rico (or the Puerto Rico Chapter of the American College of Radiology), herein after referred to as the “Society.”
Article II – Purposes
The purposes of the Society shall be those of the American College of Radiology, hereinafter sometimes referred to as the “College”:
- To advance the science of radiology
- Improve radiologic service to the patient
- Study the socioeconomic aspects of the practice of radiology, and
- Encourage improved and continuing education for radiologists and allied professional fields.
Furthermore, purposes of the Society shall include:
- To promote the knowledge of the radiology specialty and its applications and limitations throughout the medical community
- To create and recommend laws and bylaws to regulate and guarantee the quality and purity of the radiology practice and subspecialties for the people’s benefit, and
- To encourage the scientific and cultural interchange with radiological societies of other countries or states of our nation.
Article III – Affiliation
The Society will be an affiliate of the American College of Radiology.
Article IV – Membership
All members in each membership category must be members of the American College of Radiology. Exceptions to this rule includes Radiologic Technologists or Office Administrators. Those individuals specifically will only pay the dues assigned by the local chapter and do not qualify for National ACR Membership. All members have the right to speak and to vote at annual and extraordinary meetings.
Section 1 – Classes of Membership
Membership in this organization shall be of seven classes:
- Regular members must pay annual dues and have a right to hold office and serve in committees.
- Qualification and Admission of Members:
- Physicians who are engaged in the practice of radiology, including nuclear medicine, and who have completed an approved residency program in radiology and have been certified by the appropriate Puerto Rico State Licensing Board in a radiological discipline are eligible to be Members of the Society.
- Medical physicists who are engaged in the practice of medical physics are eligible to be Members of the Society.
- Member in Training:
- Members in Training shall be those physicians who are in approved radiology residencies or fellowships, medical students registered in a formal educational program at an LCME or AOA approved medical school, and medical physicists who are registered in a formal educational program in medical physics.
- Member in Training status shall normally terminate within six (6) months following completion of the period of training. Those individuals who go directly from an approved residency to a fellowship program or from a medical educational program to an approved radiology residency program may continue as members in training until completion of their training. Within six months after completion of training, the Member in Training will automatically become a member of the Society in the appropriate class of membership, unless he or she affirmatively declines membership.
- A Member in Training shall have the right to vote, to be appointed to committees, but shall not have the right to hold elective office.
- Allied Health
- Non-physician medical professionals, such as MRI scientists, and radiologist assistants whose special qualifications are deemed valuable to the Society and who are approved for membership to the ACR are eligible to be Allied Health members of the Society. Radiologist assistants must be certified by the ARRT as a Registered Radiologist Assistant.
- An Allied Health Member shall pay annual dues and have the right to be appointed to committees but shall not have the right to hold elective office.
- Retired or Inactive Member
- Members shall seek retired or temporarily inactive membership status by written request, which may be granted by the Executive Committee.
- Members who are approved for the status of Retired Member or Retired Fellow of the ACR may be a Retired Member of the Society.
- These might be members of the Ethics Committee of the Society.
- They may be permitted to participate and vote in committees.
- They shall not have the right to hold elective office
- Affiliate Member
- Affiliate Members shall be a member in one of the above membership categories who maintains active membership in another Chapter that is not in the state where his/her principal practice is conducted but chooses to have membership in this Chapter.
- Affiliate Members shall pay dues to both Chapters, have the right to vote, have the right to be appointed to committees and have the right to hold elected office.
- Honorific Members
- Physicians of other specialties or other professionals who were distinguished through their special interest and cooperation in the radiology field.
- Honorific members shall not have a right to vote, serve in committees or hold elective office. They are not obligated to pay dues of the chapter.
- Emeritus Members
- Society members who have been distinguished through years of service in the educational or research fields at the local or national level or that have served in the private practice.
- Radiologic Technologists
- This category includes radiologic technicians, ultra-sonographers, or academic professors in these disciplines.They are allowed one representative in the executive committee. They are subject to the dues designated by the chapter; however, will not be members of the National ACR. They are not required to pay ACR dues. They are not eligible to hold office; however, are entitled to vote.
- Imaging Center Administrators
This category includes administrators, and office managers at radiology departments within hospital facilities, or outpatient imaging centers. They are subject to the dues designated by the chapter; however, will not be members of the National ACR. They are not required to pay ACR dues. They are not eligible to hold office; however, are entitled to vote.
Section 2 – Membership Resignation
- Any member of the Society may resign by submitting a letter of resignation to the Society Secretary.
Article V – Board of Directors and Officers
Section 1 – Members of the Board of Directors
- The Board of Directors of the Society shall be:
- Vice President
- Elected President
- Past President
- ACR Councilor(s)
- ACR Alternate Councilor(s)
The offices of secretary and treasurer may be combined.
All Society officers shall be regular members of the American College of Radiology.
Section 2 – Duties of the President
- The President shall be the presiding officer of the Society and shall perform all the duties that custom and parliamentary practice associate with the office of the President.
- He or she shall be a member ex officio of all committees.
Section 3 – Duties of the Vice President
- In the absence of the President or in the event of the President’s inability or refusal to act, the Vice President shall perform the duties of the President and, when so acting, shall have all the powers of and be subject to all of the restrictions of the president.
Section 4 – Duties of the President-Elect
- In the absence of the president and the vice president or in the event of the president’s and vice-president’s inability or refusal to act, the president-elect shall perform the duties of the president and, when so acting, shall have all the powers of and be subject to all the restrictions of the president.
Section 5 – Duties of the Secretary and Sub-Secretary
- The Secretary shall notify all members as to time, place, and agenda for Society business meetings.
- The Secretary shall record and preserve the minutes of the business meetings of the Society and the Executive Committee.
- The Secretary shall submit minutes of Society business meetings to the American College of Radiology.
- The Secretary shall notify the members and the American College of Radiology of election outcomes.
- The Sub-Secretary shall be a member of the Executive Committee.
- In the absence of the Secretary or in the event of the Secretary’s inability or refusal to act, the Sub-Secretary shall perform the duties of the Secretary and, when so acting, shall have all the powers of and be subject to all of the restrictions of the secretary.
Section 6 – Duties of the Treasurer and Sub-Treasurer
- The Treasurer shall receive all monies due the Society and shall disburse such monies.
- The Treasurer shall make a report of the funds of the Society at each annual meeting.
- The Sub-Treasurer shall be a member of the Executive Committee.
- In the absence of the Treasurer or in the event of the Treasurer’s inability or refusal to act, the Sub-Treasurer shall perform the duties of the Treasurer and, when so acting, shall have all the powers of and be subject to all the restrictions of the treasurer.
Section 7 – Election
- To be eligible for election or re-election as an officer, the individual must be a member as specified in Article IV.
- Election shall be by acclamation or ballot at the annual meeting of the Society, and the nominee for each office who receives the plurality of votes, by simple majority, cast shall be declared elected.
- In case no candidate receives a majority, a second ballot shall be taken on two candidates receiving the greatest number of votes.
Section 8 – Terms
- The terms of the President, Vice President, President-Elect, Secretary, Sub-Secretary, Treasurer and Sub-Treasurer shall be two years, or until their successors are elected and qualified.
Section 9 – Vacancies
- Vacancies occurring in any office shall be filled by action of the Board of Directors. A vacancy may occur when:
- The position is not filled in the election.
- An elected officer retires or resigns.
- An elected officer is unable to attend four or more board meetings in a period of one year.
- The officer thus chosen shall serve for the unexpired portion of the term of the officer whose office is being filled.
Section 10 – Councilors and Alternate Councilors
- The Society shall elect councilors to the Council of the American College of Radiology in such numbers and on the terms authorized by the Bylaws of the College and the rules and regulations of the ACR Council.
- Election of Councilors shall be by acclamation or ballot at the annual meeting of the Society, and the nominee for each office who receives the plurality of votes, by simple majority, cast shall be declared elected.
- In case no candidate for a vacancy receives a majority, a second ballot shall be taken on the two candidates for the vacancy receiving the greatest number of votes.
- For each Councilor so elected, the Society shall elect, by the same procedure, an Alternate Councilor.
- Councilors and Alternate Councilors must be members or Fellows of the College, and must be certified in a radiological discipline, including nuclear medicine, by the American Board of Radiology, the American Osteopathic Board of Radiology, the American Board of Nuclear Medicine, the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada or the College des Medecins du Quebec.
- The term of office of a Councilor or Alternate Councilor shall be prescribed by the current Bylaws of the American College of Radiology.
- Duties of the Councilor:
- The Councilor’s primary duty is to serve as a representative from the Society in the Council – the legislative body – of the American College of Radiology.
- The duties of councilors shall include:
- Attending and participating actively in the meetings of the Society and of the College
- Familiarizing themselves with activities and problems at the local and national level
- Acting as liaison between the Society and the College and interpreting each to the other
- Contributing to both groups’ ideas, guidance and advice, and stimulating preparation of resolutions of the Society for presentation to the Council.
- Duties of the Alternate Councilors:
- Alternate Councilors shall aid the Councilors in the performance of their duties and accompany the Councilors to meetings of the Society and of the College.
- The Alternate Councilor shall act for the Councilor in the Councilor’s absence or in the event of the Councilor’s inability to act.
Article VI – Board of Directors
Section 1 – Executive Committee
- The Board of Directors will be the Executive Committee.
- The Executive Committee shall meet once a month.Some of the meetings may be deemed closed meetings at the discretion of the Board.
- The Executive Committee shall carry on the business of the Society between regular meetings and report its activities to the membership at each regular meeting.
- Meetings of the executive committee may be conducted by electronic means. Including voice teleconference and/or email communication. The quorum requirement for electronic meetings will be determined as in a regular meeting.
- Authority is vested in the Executive Committee to make decisions affecting policies of the Society, and the authority is also vested with the Executive Committee to implement such decisions when the Executive Committee deems that the calling of a special business meeting of the Society is not feasible.
- The Executive Committee shall report annually to the membership on any such policy actions taken.
Article VII – Standing Committees
Section 1 – Standing Committees
- The standing committees of the Society are:
- Budget and finance committee
- Communications committee
- Ethics committee
- Fellowship committee
- Government relations committee
- Membership committee
- Nominating committee
Section 2 – Budget and Finance Committee
- The President shall appoint a budget and finance committee to prepare annually a budget to be presented to the officers and to assist the officers in their oversight responsibilities relating to fiscal management.
- The Treasurer or Secretary-Treasurer shall serve as chair of the committee.
Section 3 – Communications Committee
- The President shall appoint a communications committee to identify and execute strategies for communicating with Society members and the public.
- Will coordinate educational campaigns in different communications media directed at patients and medical insurance companies in Puerto Rico to help promote the radiologist as the most prepared and better trained specialist for interpretation and performance of diagnostic imaging studies and interventional procedures.
Section 4 – Ethics Committee
- The Ethics Committee assists the Society and its members in ethical matters as identified in the ACR Code of Ethics.
- This committee is composed of at least three (3) members and will be appointed by the Board of Directors.
- It is preferred to be composed of retired or semi-retired members in the radiology field or that have been practicing for at least fifteen (15) years.
Section 5 – Fellowship Committee
- The President shall appoint a fellowship committee to annually review the membership of the Society for the purpose of nominating members to fellowship in the ACR.
- The committee shall consist only of Fellows of the American College of Radiology.
Section 6 – Government Relations and Medical Insurance Plans Relations Committee
- The President shall appoint a government relations committee to anticipate and review proposed legislation that affects the practice of radiology in the state.
- The committee will report findings and recommendations for action to the officers.
- To create and recommend laws and bylaws to guarantee the quality and purity of radiology practice and subspecialties for the people’s benefit.
- To watch for the appropriate enforcement of laws and bylaws that regulate the practice of radiology.
- To serve as liaison between policy established by medical insurance plans and the radiologist’s membership streamlining communication between the parts.
Section 7 – Membership Committee
- The President shall appoint a membership committee to review applications for all classes of membership in the Society.
- The committee and shall report its recommendations to the Executive Committee at any regular meeting.
- Recruitment activities shall be conducted by this committee.
Section 8 – Nominating and Elections Committee
- The President shall appoint a nominating committee to identify and recruit Society members for Society leadership positions.
- The committee will report findings and recommendations for action to the Board of Directors.
Section 9 – Internet Committee
- This committee will evaluate the emails sent to the webmaster of our official webpage socrad.com and will submit them to the Executive Committee for approval monthly.
- It will work alongside other committees to unveil relevant information for the radiologic community, expedite communications and serve as an ongoing source of news and future events.
Article VIII – Resident and Fellow Section
Section 1 – Residents and Fellows
- Members in training may organize as a section governed by its own constitution and bylaws.
- The mission and bylaws of the section shall be consistent with those of the Society and the American College of Radiology.
- The organization of the section and its activities are subject to the approval of the Executive Committee of the Society.
Article IX – Meetings
Section 1 – Annual Meeting
- The annual meeting of the Society shall be held during the annual convention, on or before November of each year, at such place as shall be selected by the Executive Committee.
- Notice of the exact time and place of such meeting shall be mailed or e-mailed to the members of the Society no fewer than 15 days prior to such date.
- The Executive Committee may schedule extraordinary meetings and notice of the time and place thereof shall be mailed or e-mailed to the members of the Society no fewer than 15 days prior to any such scheduled meeting.
Section 2 – Special or Emergency Meetings
- Special meetings of the Society shall be called:
- By the President when deemed necessary by the Executive Committee
- At the request of the American College of Radiology
- By petition of one third of the voting members in good standing or by 10 such members, whichever is less.
- Notice stating the time, place and purpose of the meeting shall be mailed or e-mailed to each member or posted on the webpage at least 3 days prior to the meeting.
- At a special meeting, no business may be transacted except that for which such special meeting was called.
Section 3 – Quorum
- The Annual Meeting’s Quorum will be constituted by 25% of Active Members appropriately convened through written or electronic (email) communication with no less than 15 days in advance to their last known address.
- In the case the quorum could not be established at the determined time, it can still be constituted with those Active Members present 30 minutes later.
- In the case of an emergency for the radiologic community, as established by the Executive Committee, the notice for an Emergency Meeting can be done with less time through an ad in a major newspaper, through email or through publication in the internet page.
Article X – Indemnification
Section 1 – Indemnification
- The Society shall have the power to indemnify any of its officers, members, committee chairs and members, employees and agents against expenses, judgments, fines, settlements, and other amounts actually and reasonably incurred in connection with activities undertaken at the Society’s request if such person acted in good faith and in a manner the person reasonably believed to be in the best interest of the Society to the extent such indemnification is permitted by law.
- The individual will be indemnified for expenses, including attorney’s fees, reasonably incurred in any threatened, pending, or completed action or proceeding, whether civil, criminal, administrative, or investigative, by reason of the fact that the individual acted on behalf of the Society.
- Indemnification can be made only as to a specific case, upon a determination that indemnification is proper in the circumstances and must be authorized by a majority vote of a quorum of Executive Committee members who are not parties to the proceeding, or by a majority vote of a quorum of voting members who are not parties to the proceeding.
- The Society shall have the power to purchase and maintain insurance on behalf of any agent of the Society against any liability asserted against or incurred by the agent in such capacity or arising out of the agent’s status or such capacity, whether the Society would have the power to indemnify the agent against liability under the provisions of applicable state statutes.
Article XI – Code of Ethics
The Code of Ethics of the American College of Radiology, as published in the College’s most recent bylaws, is hereby expressly adopted as the ethics of the Society.
Section 1 – Rules of Ethics
- The Society shall abide by the Principles of Ethics of the American College of Radiology.
Section 2 – Disciplinary Procedures for Violation of Rules of Ethics
- A Member of the Society may be censured, suspended, or expelled for due cause by the Executive Committee, pursuant to the Principles of Ethics, Rules of Ethics and disciplinary procedures set forth in these bylaws.
- Disciplinary proceedings shall be confidential.
- The levels of disciplinary action shall be defined as follows:
- Censure: A censure shall be a written reprimand to the member from the secretary of the Society, with no loss of benefits of membership. Such censure shall be made a part of the membership file of the member.
- Suspension: A suspension shall cause the member to lose the benefits of membership for a specific period of time as determined by the Ethics Committee, after which the individual may be fully reinstated upon review by the Ethics Committee. Suspension shall be for such term as the Ethics Committee determines is necessary to ensure modification of behavior.
- Expulsion: Expulsion shall cause the member to be removed from the rolls of the Society. An expelled member shall not be entitled to any of the benefits of membership. The Society shall not accept a reapplication for membership from an expelled member until a prescribed period, as the Committee shall determine, has elapsed from the date the individual was notified of the Committee’s action.
- Grounds for Disciplinary Action: A member of the Society may be disciplined for any one or more violations of the Rules of Ethics of the American College of Radiology. Additionally, a member may be disciplined for:
- Limitations or restriction of any right associated with the practice of medicine by any state or Canadian province, including the revocation, suspension, and restriction of a medical license or the voluntary surrender of a license while under investigation.
- Conviction of any felony.
- Conviction of scientific fraud (see ACR Rules of Ethics, Section 2, Number 10)
- The Executive Committee may censure, suspend, or expel any member of the Society for violation of its rules, regulations, or principles, in accordance with the procedures outlined below.
- Disciplinary questions related to such violations shall be initially referred, in writing, to the president of the Society.
- The matter shall be referred to the Society’s Ethics Committee, which shall investigate the merits of the charges.
- Based on the findings of this investigation, the Ethics Committee shall recommend to the president either that disciplinary action be taken or that no such action be taken.
- If the Ethics Committee decides that disciplinary action should be taken, its recommendation shall be submitted to the president in writing.
- If disciplinary action is recommended by the Ethics Committee, the member shall be notified in writing that a professional review action may be taken against him or her and the reasons for the proposed action.
- The member shall be informed that he or she has the right to request a hearing on the proposed action at any time within 60 calendar days.
- The member shall be provided with a written summary of his or her rights during the hearing.
- A member who does not request a hearing within the 60-day period waives the right to such a hearing and shall be deemed to have accepted the recommendation of the committee.
- The committee’s report shall then be forwarded to the Society’s Executive Committee for ratification, in accordance with Section 9 of this article.
- If the disciplinary action is based on professional conduct or competence that affects or could affect patient health or welfare, the final decision of the Society shall be reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank within 15 days.
- A failure to request a hearing after a complaint has been filed and found to be meritorious will also result in loss of membership in the Society.
- If the member requests a hearing on a timely basis, the president of the Society must give him or her written notice of the time, place, and date of the hearing.
- The hearing shall take place no earlier than 30 calendar days after the date notice has been sent.
- Postponements and extensions of the hearing date may be granted by the hearing officer on a showing of good cause.
- The notice of the hearing shall include the names of witnesses expected to testify.
- The hearing shall be held before an arbitrator mutually acceptable to the physician and the Society, a hearing officer appointed by the Society who is not in direct economic competition with the member involved, or a panel of three active members of the Society appointed by its Executive Committee who are not in direct economic competition with the member involved.
- The right to a hearing may be forfeited if the member fails to appear without good cause, and the member shall be deemed to have accepted the disciplinary action involved.
- If the right is forfeited without good cause, membership in the Society may be terminated, and a report on the action may be forwarded to the National Practitioner Data Bank.
- During the hearing, the member has the right to:
- Be represented by an attorney or other person of his or her choice
- The right to have a record made of the proceedings, copies of which may be obtained by the physician on payment of any reasonable charges associated with its preparation
- The right to call, examine, and cross-examine witnesses
- The right to present evidence determined to be relevant by the arbitrator, hearing officer, or panel, regardless of its admissibility in a court of law
- The right to submit a written statement at the close of the hearing.
- Evidence at the hearing should be presented first by the Society Executive Committee and then by the member.
- The Executive Committee may then introduce evidence to rebut the member’s evidence but may not introduce evidence or issues not previously raised either by the committee or by the member.
- The complainant shall be entitled to attend the hearing and may be required to testify.
- Judicial rules of evidence and procedure relating to the conduct of the hearing, the examination of witnesses, and the presentation of evidence shall not apply to a hearing conducted under the terms of these bylaws.
- The Executive Committee shall bear the burden of persuading the hearing officer or panel by a preponderance of the evidence that the action or recommendation is reasonable and warranted.
- At the end of the hearing, the member has a right to receive the written recommendation of the arbitrator, hearing officer, or panel, including the basis for the recommendation.
- He or she also has the right to receive the written decision of the Society, including the basis for the decision.
- Ratification of disciplinary action against any member of the Society shall require the affirmative vote of no less than three-fourths of the membership of the Executive Committee present at the meeting when the action is taken.
- On ratification by the Executive Committee, the disciplinary action shall be effective and be promptly reported to the Judiciary Committee of the American College of Radiology by the secretary of the Society.
- Members against whom disciplinary actions are taken by the Society may appeal the decision to the Judiciary Committee of the ACR.
- If no appeal is made within 30 days, a letter containing the final decision shall be prepared by the arbitrator, officer, or panel, with a copy going to the member who is the subject of the disciplinary action.
- A waiver of the right to appeal shall be deemed to mean that the member has accepted the decision of the Society.
- If the disciplinary action is based on professional conduct or competence that affects or could affect patient health or welfare, the final decision of the Society shall be reported to the National Practitioner Data Bank within 15 days.
- Before the ACR’s Judiciary Committee hear an appeal, it shall notify, by registered or certified mail, the member in question no fewer than 30 calendar days before its meeting that the member may then appear in person or be represented by an attorney or other person of his or her choice to present any arguments that the member believes will show that the disciplinary action should be reversed.
- If the member fails to appear or send his or her representative to the appeal hearing, then a final report of the Society’s decision shall be sent to the member and forwarded to the state medical board or licensing authority within 15 days in accordance with the regulations of the National Practitioner Data Bank.
- If most of the Judiciary Committee determines that the disciplinary action taken by the Society against one of its members is supported by the evidence and is the result of fair procedures that are consistent with the Bylaws of the ACR and of the Society, the Judiciary Committee shall affirm the disciplinary action.
- If most of the Judiciary Committee reverses the disciplinary action, the matter may be remanded in whole or in part of further proceedings or may be completely or partially dismissed.
- The Society’s Executive Committee and the ACR’s Judiciary Committee shall comply with all procedures for reporting adverse professional review actions based on professional conduct or competence that affects or could affect patient health or welfare to the National Practitioner Data Bank.
- The status of a member during disciplinary proceedings shall be unaltered.
Article XII – Amendments
- Amendments to these bylaws are made at the annual meeting of the Society or at extraordinary meeting by the favorable concurrence of two-thirds of the members present provided the proposed amendments shall have been presented in writing to the Executive Committee at least 30 days prior to the meeting at which the proposed amendments are to be voted on.
- The Executive Committee shall notify the members by of proposed amendments no fewer than 15 days prior to such meeting. Notification may be made by any communication means available, including electronic means.
- Any amendment so adopted shall not be contrary to requirements for Chapter status in the American College of Radiology and shall be immediately forwarded to the College for its records.
Article XIII – Rules of Order
Section 1 – Rules of Order
- In the absence of any provision in these bylaws, all meetings of the Society shall be governed by the parliamentary rules and usages contained in the current edition of Sturgis Standard Code for Parliamentary Procedure.
Article XIV – Dissolution
Section 1 – Dissolution
- In the event of dissolution or final liquidation of the Society, all of its assets remaining after payment of its obligation shall have been made or provided for, shall be distributed according to applicable law to and among such corporation, foundation or other organizations organized and operated exclusively for scientific and educational purposes consistent with those of the Society as shall be designated by the Executive Committee.