ACR ImPower

ACR ImPower Program logoThe ACR® ImPower Program provides site teams participating in an improvement collaborative with a unique opportunity to learn and work alongside other organizations solving the same problem at the same time and using the same processes. The program is based upon the premise that when people who do the work are taught and empowered to solve problems, the solutions are better, the front-line staff embraces the change, and improvement capabilities increase.

Throughout the ImPower Program, teams share what they have learned and support one another in implementing best practices in a way that works for them at their local site to sustain improvement.

Who Participates?

Site teams are made up of a team leader, physician leader and team member process experts. A quality improvement professional serves as a team coach and is an integral team member providing just-in-time teaching and project support throughout the project.

General Participation Requirements

Following are key factors for successful participation in an improvement collaborative. Successful organizations have:

  • Department leaders who are supportive of and willing to manage change.
  • A team of engaged front-line staff and leaders to participate in the program and do project work.
  • An improvement coach with quality improvement experience.
  • An organizational sponsor to provide time and resources for the project.
  • The capability to track and report data about improvement progress on a weekly basis and to perform manual image audits or report reviews as needed.
  • Ability to commit to a six-month training program and to the personnel resources as described in the table below.
  • A desire to join a community committed to improving and collaborating to create the best experience for your staff and patients.


Roles and Responsibilities


Role Name

Role Responsibilities

Approximate Time Requirement

Project Sponsor
The person in department leadership who is highly motivated to complete this project and can provide the resources to get it done.
 One hour per project per week or as needed.
Physician Leader Project team member to lead clinical decision making and ensure continuity with physician team.  Two hours per week.
Improvement Coach
QI professional who supports the team in the application of program concepts and tools. One coach can be assigned up to two project teams.
 One day per week per project.
Team Leader
Project team member with a leadership role or leadership potential to manage the project team.
 Two hours per project per week outside of team member requirement.
Team Member
Front-line staff that represent the process you are trying to improve. Two to four members per team.
 Three to six hours per week; two-hour training sessions held every third week.
Data Analyst
If the team leader or coaches do not have the capability to access data from department systems, a data analyst will be needed to support the projects.
 Two hours per project per week (heavier at the beginning of the course).

How Do Site Teams Learn and Improve?

Coaches Training

Each team’s quality coach attends five two-hour coaching training sessions to gain skills in facilitating quality improvement. The sessions include topics such as leading improvement instead of doing improvement, developing measures and visualizing data, managing teams and projects, identifying and removing project barriers, and creating a culture of change.

The coaches apply the skills learned during the training to support their team in successfully progressing through the ImPower Program, to sustain improvements achieved beyond the program and to facilitate future quality work.

Learning Sessions

All team members participate in 10 two-hour learning sessions spaced across approximately six months during which teams learn key concepts about effective quality improvement.

The ImPower Program has undergone 10 years of development and rigorous iteration to ensure that all content is useful in problem solving and is delivered in a way that team members can easily apply to their own quality improvement projects.

Visual timeline for cohort 2 in the ACR Learning Network

Walk the Wall

In between the learning sessions, participants engage in ongoing project work and attend regular project report sessions called “walk the wall.” These sessions provide an opportunity for teams to present progress, discuss challenges, consider solutions and learn from each other.

Walk the wall provides an opportunity to acknowledge and track a team's progress towards meeting established improvement milestones, e.g., defining a problem the team intends to solve and identifying the problem’s key drivers. An example of the project progress chart is shown below.

project progress chart example