• The Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions (SCAI) Code of Ethics

    Type Size


    SCAI's mission is to lead the global interventional cardiovascular community through education, advocacy, research, and quality patient care.

    In fulfillment of that mission, SCAI recognizes that ethical issues surrounding medical practice are more complex and critical than ever.  The Society also recognizes its responsibility to promote the highest possible ethical behavior by its members.  SCAI members must recognize their responsibility to patients, to society, to other physicians, and to other health professionals.

    To that end, the SCAI Code of Ethics defines the principles and standards of conduct the Society believes essential to the practice of invasive/interventional cardiology at the highest level and defines standards for ethical, honorable behavior by SCAI members.  

    It is the policy of SCAI that members1 will comply with the following Code of Ethics.  It is also SCAI's policy to counsel members as appropriate, assist them to comply with these principles, and, when necessary, apply the Society's enforcement and disciplinary process in a fair and impartial manner.  In the case of alleged and proven violations of this policy, such violations will be adjudicated through application of SCAI's separately published enforcement and disciplinary process policy.

    1.      Patient Care

    1.1) The patient's welfare and best interest will always be first and foremost in the member's clinical decision-making.

    1.2) A member will be dedicated to providing competent, appropriate, evidence-based medical care with compassion and respect for human dignity and welfare.

    1.3) A member's interactions with patients will occur without inappropriate external influence.

    1.4) Procedures will be performed with the expectation that the patient's quality of life will be improved and/or the risk of post-procedure adverse outcomes will be reduced.

    1.5) Prior to the member performing a procedure, the patient will be given an explanation regarding details of the procedure, potential risks and benefits, and all reasonable alternatives to the procedure, so the patient can make as fully an informed decision as possible.

    1.6) Maximizing a patient's safety and comfort will be a priority before, during and after the procedure.

    1.7) A member's decision to perform an invasive/interventional procedure will be based upon what is in the best interest of the individual patient.

    1.8) A member will accept the importance of independent, impartial and periodic peer review, and cooperate fully with this as a critical component of continuous quality improvement and appropriateness review.

    1.9) Performing inappropriate procedures on patients is profoundly unethical and any member doing so will suffer permanent loss of membership in the Society.

    2.      Professionalism

    2.1) A member will interact honestly, professionally and respectfully at all times with patients, patients' families, the member's colleagues and other healthcare professionals.

    2.2) A member will respect the rights of patients, families, colleagues and other healthcare professionals, and will safeguard patient confidentiality within the letter and spirit of the law.

    2.3) A member will recognize and fulfill a responsibility to participate in professional activities contributing to the best possible patient care.

    2.4) A member will recognize and fulfill a responsibility to maintain awareness of appropriate peer-reviewed published guidelines and standards.

    2.5)  A member will perform research with integrity and report results honestly and fully. No claim will be made to research or intellectual property that is not his/hers.  Plagiarism, falsification of results, or the use of others' research without proper citation is unethical.

    2.6)  A member will respect and adhere to the law and recognize a responsibility to seek changes in those laws, regulations, and policies that are contrary to the best interest of the patient.

    2.7)  A member will cooperate with the regulatory and peer-review processes regarding matters of competence or conduct.

    2.8)  A member will not use any forum or medium of public communication to advertise himself/herself through deceptive, misleading or untruthful information.

    2.9)  A member will speak on behalf of SCAI only when specifically authorized by the SCAI President or his/her representative.   

    3.      Continuing Education and Disclosure

    3.1) A member will maintain her/his invasive and interventional skills and keep up-to-date with medical knowledge by participating in educational meetings, conferences or other educational programs, and by keeping abreast of appropriate peer-reviewed publications.

    3.2) A member will continually apply and advance scientific knowledge, make relevant information available to patients, colleagues and the public, obtain consultation, and use the talents of other health professionals when indicated.

    3.3) In advance of serving on SCAI committees, educational programs or writing groups, a member will fully disclose industry relationships and other potential conflicts of interest in accordance with the Society's current disclosure/conflict of interest policy.

    3.4) A member who serves as faculty in educational programs will make a good faith effort to align with and follow the principles in relevant SCAI position/policy statements regarding educational programs.

    4. SCAI Expert Witness Principles (U.S. Members)

    A member who chooses to provide expert testimony in legal cases pertaining to invasive or interventional treatment...

    4.1) Will be objective and truthful;

    4.2) Will not accept a contingency fee for his/her services or other compensation linked to the outcome;

    4.3) Will be appropriately qualified and thoroughly prepared with relevant facts so that he or she can, to the best of his or her ability, provide the court with opinions that are accurate and capable of substantiation with respect to the matters at hand;

    4.4) Will have a current, valid and unrestricted license to practice medicine in the United States;

    4.5) Will be currently subspecialty-certified in invasive/interventional cardiology at the time of testimony (by an appropriate adult/congenital/pediatric specialty board);

    4.6) Will note that he/she is not representing SCAI;

    4.7) Will be able to demonstrate a thorough knowledge of current practice; and

    4.8)  Will reflect professional community standards and will remain objective and impartial. 


    1 In this document "member" denotes all SCAI membership categories.