Report: Ala. VA hospital facing ‘critical shortage’ of radiologists

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The Central Alabama Veterans Health Care System (CAVHCS) is experiencing a staff shortage that could leave only one radiologist to read x-rays for two hospitals in Montgomery and Tuskegee, according to a report by the Montgomery Advertiser.

Information in the report is based on leaked emails obtained by the paper that detailed the shortage of radiologists.

The two hospitals mentioned in the report have more than 40,000 patients.

According to the emails cited by the Montgomery Advertiser, the chief radiologist requested that other departments limit requests for imaging studies unless they were absolutely necessary. The email also reportedly said the department is currently short three radiologists, with a fourth potentially retiring.

CAVHCS was in the headlines earlier this year when it was found that more than 2,000 patient x-rays went unread over the course of five years. According to an earlier Montgomery Advertiser report, CAVHCS discovered in April that images not read within eight days fell off the hospital’s system, leading to the large numbers of unread images.