Dispatches January 2018
News from the ACR and Beyond
Build a Better Radiology Team Across the Ages
Multigenerational team building can be challenging in any work environment, and radiology departments are no exception. A recent article in Radiology Management offers up strategies within the radiology workforce designed to combat rising health care costs, boost morale, and ultimately improve the quality of patient care. Authors focused on how to better manage the relationships between Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, and Millennials within a practice. Concepts include embracing generational differences, improving coaching skills, rewarding achievements, building management experience, and resolving conflict.
Read more at bit.ly/RadTeam_Building.
ACR’s Data Science Institute™ Taking the Lead on AI
The ACR Data Science Institute™ (DSI) is collaborating with radiology professionals, industry leaders, government agencies, patients, and other stakeholders to develop and implement AI applications. DSI's framework for machine learning in radiology defines use cases for the creation of AI algorithms; establishes a methodology, and provides tools and metrics for creating algorithm training, testing, and validation; monitors the efficacy of AI algorithms in clinical practice; and addresses the regulatory and legal issues associated with AI in imaging, interventional radiology, and radiation oncology. Find the latest AI content for radiologists and industry partners, resource links, blog posts, and use cases built around clinical scenarios that could help improve patient care. Be sure to watch the video on the DSI homepage explaining how DSI will help radiologists embrace and utilize AI tools in practice.
Visit www.acrdsi.org for more.
Mobile Mammograms Utilized More by Younger, Minority Women
Because social disparities often make it difficult for some women to receive breast imaging, mobile mammography has become a popular way to reach those without access to cancer screening centers. A study in the American Journal of Roentgenology compared in-person center visits to services obtained from a mobile mammography van to evaluate the effectiveness of mobile services in terms of follow-up care, the number of biopsies performed, cancer detection rates, and overall sociodemographic variables. The goal of this research is to provide data for radiologists seeking to deliver better screening and follow-up care for underserved populations.
Read more at bit.ly/Mobile_Mammo.
It’s Time to Renew
ACR understands your vital role in the ongoing improvement of patient care and is committed to helping you every step of the way. We work hard to effect change in the radiology landscape that positively impacts your standard of care and your bottom line.
In 2017, the ACR advocacy team convinced CMS to forego a 50 percent cut to mammography technical reimbursement and secured additional coverage for CT colonography, among many other gains. ACR Quality and Safety staff launched a Quality Payment Program website to help you with the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015, expanded BI-RADS® to seven languages, and created an IR registry. These are just a sample of the expansive efforts the College undertakes on your behalf.
Be a part of our future successes by renewing your 2018 membership today at acr.org/renew.
NIH Unveils Huge Chest X-Ray Data Set to the Public
More than 100,000 chest X-rays and accompanying data are now available to the scientific community at large. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center hopes the data sets will give researchers more of what they need to feed machinelearning computers working on detection and diagnosis. The data set of scans comes from more than 30,000 patients, including many with advanced lung disease. The images in the data sets were carefully screened, according to NIH, and all personal patient information was removed. The NIH research hospital is planning to release similar data sets of CT scans in the near future.
Read more at bit.ly/Xray_Database.
ASNC Issues New Nuclear Cardiology Guidance
The American Society of Nuclear Cardiology (ASNC) — in looking to reduce costs and improve patient care and outcomes — has published new guidelines calling for integration of structured reporting of data into patients’ electronic health records. The new guidelines update guidance from 2009 and reflect changes to nuclear cardiology practices using new technologies. Clearly communicating “the results of complex imaging studies in a structured format” is needed, ASNC asserts, to “reflect the current breadth and depth” of the field.
Read more at bit.ly/ASNC_Guidelines.
"A lot of radiologists and radiology managers are concerned… for the patient and the continuity of care. If we have to send a patient elsewhere to get that CT or MRI, that often stops the continuity of care." – Christie James, MS, president-elect of the Radiology Business Management Association, talking about Anthem’s decision to push outpatient MRI and CT exams to non-hospital settings at bit.ly/Non_Hospitals.
Imaging 3.0®: Putting Patients First Through Consults
In partnership with ear, nose, and throat (ENT) surgeons, neuroradiologists at Emory University have established a presence within the clinical space to engage directly with cancer patients. Consultations with a radiologist can help patients better understand their treatment options, and the doctors at Emory envisioned an environment that would allow radiologists to take a more active, consultative role in the treatment of cancer patients. The university’s new initiative added a patient consultation program to the ENT clinic, and patient response to the program thus far has been overwhelmingly positive.
Cardiac Devices Safe for MRI
A limited study indicated that patients with electronic cardiac implant devices should not have an issue with getting an MRI, say researchers in a study published online in the Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology. The team from Intermountain Medical Center Heart Institute in Salt Lake City looked at 212 MRI studies from 178 patients with a total of 418 implanted leads and found no adverse reactions to the modality between February 2014 and August 2016. The study was published to address concerns about the strong magnetic fields associated with MRI and how it may interfere with implanted pacemakers or defibrillators.
Read more at bit.ly/Cardiac_MRI.
Renew Your Annual Pledge to Radiation Safety
Image Wisely® is a joint program of ACR, RSNA, AAPM and ASRT that provides current information and guidelines on radiation safety with the objective of lowering the amount of radiation used in medically necessary imaging studies and eliminating unnecessary procedures. Now is the time to renew your annual pledge to optimize radiation dose in your medical imaging.
Visit imagewisely.org today.
Here’s What You Missed
The Bulletin website is home to a wealth of content not featured in print. Check out blog posts, extra articles, and other multimedia content at acrbulletin.org.
Flying on Autopilot: Epinephrine Autoinjectors
Should radiologists be ready and willing to use epinephrine autoinjectors in the event a patient reacts to a contrast? It’s been suggested that just half of radiologists know the proper dose to administer during anaphylaxis. Read more at bit.ly/Inject_Dose.
Radiation Oncology Corner
Check out an interview with Seth A. Rosenthal, MD, FACR, chair of the ACR Commission on Radiation Oncology. Rosenthal gives his take on how being of service provides perspective and opportunity in radiology at bit.ly/Oncology_Corner.
Tube Check: A Plain Question With Quality Implications
It’s 10 p.m. Your workflow begins to flood with requests from the emergency department. The ICU intern inserts a nasogastric tube into the patient you diagnosed with transcortical infarction. What benchmarks indicate successful nasogastric tube placement? Read more at bit.ly/Tube_Placement.