AIUM targets point-of-care ultrasound guidelines

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Medical professionals representing 46 health societies met in November in Orlando, Fla. to develop quality and safety guidelines for point-of-care ultrasound applications, at the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine's (AIUM) Ultrasound Practice Forum: Point-of-Care Use of Ultrasound.

AIUM brought together OB/GYN, emergency physicians, radiologists, osteopathic physicians, sonographers, nurses, physician assistants and physical therapists, among other specialists, to "facilitate an open dialogue among the entire ultrasound community regarding performance and training issues for point-of-care applications," according to AIUM President Harvey L. Nisenbaum, MD.

The forum explored issues related to point-of-care ultrasound along three tracks. The first, obstetrics and gynecology (OB/GYN), deliberated the definition of limited obstetric ultrasound and the corresponding training requirements and education. The ultrasound-guided procedure group focused on the need for performance and training guidelines for joint injections, aspirations, nerve blocks and biopsies. The third track, which considered ultrasound in emergency medicine and critical care, discussed currently available guidelines, challenges to training and competency, the use of emergent ultrasound and sought to identify common ground among various specialties.

"With ultrasound playing an expanding role in several settings, the ultrasound community must collaborate to ensure the most effective use of the technology," stressed Nisenbaum.