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Quality

 

The cost of MRI research and technology production may soon significantly decrease in price due to newly developed magnetic materials from the National University of Science and Technology (NUST) MISiS Engineering Center for Industrial Technologies in Moscow.  

The FDA announced Dec. 19 that it’s requiring a new class warning and additional safety measures for all gadolinium-based contrast agents (GBCAs) for MRIs. 

As electronic health records (EHRs), interoperability and value-based care have grown more important in healthcare, an increasing number of providers are tasking IT departments with developing, implementing and managing complex enterprise imaging (EI) strategies. And one of the biggest components of any EI strategy is its ability to properly store the massive amounts of data the provider produces on a daily basis.

With allegations of sexual misconduct flooding recent headlines, a study presented at RSNA 2017 examining how radiology can offer clues in cases of identifying domestic abuse and sexual assault proved especially relevant.  

According to the 2015 report from the Institute of Medicine "Improving Diagnosis in Health Care," every person with access to healthcare will experience at least one diagnostic error in her lifetime. The diagnostic process for clinicians can be complex and requires collaboration between patients, clinicians and healthcare providers to provide the best treatment plan. There remains room for improvement in reducing diagnostic error, as discussed during a Nov. 28 session at RSNA 2017 in Chicago.

 

Recent Headlines

Radiology trainees can cut rates of radiology-report addenda, adding value to patient care

Radiology trainees giving second reads to experienced radiologists’ image-interpretation reports can significantly reduce the use of post-script corrections, amplifications or clarifications—i.e., addenda.

AHRA 2017 preview: Quality work rewarded is quality work repeated—and emulated

Numerous studies and surveys have shown that U.S. workers in every field, including healthcare, derive more job satisfaction from being recognized for a job well done than from any other top-down motivator. Not even a pay raise goes as far. Of course, turning that insight into action across a large radiology department takes a little doing.

Structured reporting increases ‘normal’—but ‘unremarkable’ persists

Implementing structured reporting templates has helped an academic radiology department increase its collective use of the clear and definitive term normal. However, use of the fuzzier term unremarkable also went up, suggesting more training may be in order.

Greasing radiologist/referring physician communication leads to better reads

Smoothing barriers impeding radiologist/referring physician communication can better care through improved timeliness and more nuanced interpretations, according to a study published in the Journal of the American College of Radiology. For the University of Texas Health Science Center, this meant building a communication tool within PACS and assigning clerical staff to troubleshoot the system, rather than leaving radiologists to figure it out on their own.

Radiology residents lack training in how to communicate results to patients

Radiology’s shift to value-based care has providers considering even the smallest details related to the patient experience. A recent study published by Current Problems in Diagnostic Radiology, however, shows that radiology residents are not being trained on the proper way to communicate exam results to patients.

fMRI used to predict dogs not fit for service training

Emory University neuroscientist Gregory Berns led a team of researchers who found that when using fMRI to scan canine candidates to assist people with disabilities, images would help predict which dogs would be unfit for a rigorous service training program.

Self-examination is crucial before making drastic MACRA-related changes

It’s official: The reporting window for MACRA has begun. While CMS has eased the reporting requirements for 2017, calling it a transition year, practices aiming for full participation still need to report all of the required measurements for a continuous period of at least 90 days. In fact, groups looking to maximize their chances of a positive adjustment should report as much data as possible, according to CMS.

How to track inconsistencies in CT protocol usage

The CT Protocol team at the University of Wisconsin have created a methodology for measuring organizational adherence to standardized CT protocols, published in the Journal of the American College of Radiology. Based on finding outliers in a large pool of scanning data, the workflows can be scaled to any size practice and are intended to help imaging centers identify problems.

Imaging leaders can't let pushback stop them from improving quality

I attended a lot of great presentations at RSNA 2016 in Chicago, but the one by Paul J. Chang, MD, on Nov. 28 had perhaps the biggest impact on me. 

Rad report grading systems: The quality metric of tomorrow or a step too far?

In the Journal of the American College of Radiology, author Richard E. Heller III, MD, MBA, recently concluded an article by saying radiology needs a “new and gradable standard” for written radiology reports. Is this a good idea? A bad one?

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