Recognizing those who put patients first

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 - Evan headshot 2013
Evan Godt, Editorial Director

Patient-centered care comes in many different flavors. It includes anything from adjusting processes to get patients in and out of their imaging appointment in a timely manner, to upgrading image sharing technologies to make sure past studies don’t need to be repeated, to focusing on dose reduction.

Putting patients first seems like the obvious goal of any healthcare provider, and indeed most do a fabulous job, but some sites go above and beyond. This is why Health Imaging created the Patient-Centric Imaging Awards to highlight practices that we feel are making a difference in their patients’ lives by stepping back, doing some self-reflection, and asking, “How can we get even better?”

Take the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Ariz., a previous PCIA winner. Staff there understood how important it is to keep patient dose as low as reasonably achievable, though they noted that operators of interventional fluoroscopy systems can lack the means of routinely incorporating these principles. In response, Mayo Clinic Scottsdale made it a priority to review protocols to establish optimal system settings, as well as use detailed patient reports to show operators the impact of their choices during procedures. As a result, mean skin exposure was reduced 60 percent overall and the number of procedures with a peak skin dose greater than 5Gy was dramatically reduced.

Georgia Regents Medical Center also provides another glowing example of implementing patient- and family-centered care practices. There, radiology staff formed an interdisciplinary design team that included patients to renovate and revamp the experience for those coming in for mammography. By making patients partners, Georgia Regents increased patient satisfaction scores by more than 30 points, surpassing the 90 percent satisfaction range. They also eliminated a mammography backlog while also increasing volume.

These are just two examples of past PCIA winners, but there are many sites worthy of recognition. If your practice or an institution you collaborate with has been working in recent years to improve patient-centered care, let us know! We’ll read all submissions, and select five to be featured in the Fall issue of Health Imaging magazine. You can find the submission form here, and the deadline is June 30.

We look forward to hearing your story!

-Evan Godt
Editor – Health Imaging