Regulatory Compliance and Image Quality

What you donít know CAN hurt you!

 

When the topic is Medical and Health Physics, what you donít know CAN hurt you. Ever-increasing regulatory requirements and strict calibration intervals make keeping track of everything and staying in compliance difficult. With the myriad imaging instruments in use, it is a daunting task for any department manager or administrator.

 
WHO WE ARE: The QAS mission is to maintain superior Image Quality by providing superior Medical and Health Physics support services to all QAS imaging customers.

WHAT WE DO: Medical/Health Physics includes all the quality control procedures, calibrations, quality assurance, imaging resolution, and record keeping processes necessary for the operation of your medical imaging department.

OUR SERVICES:

1. Imaging Equipment Testing Support Services
Acceptance Testing: QAS Diagnostic Radiological Physicists provide an independent assessment of newly installed diagnostic imaging equipment to assure the equipment is operating to the manufacturer’s specifications.

ACR Accreditation Testing: QAS Diagnostic Radiological Physicists are on file with the ACR and assist with the medical physics portion of the Accreditation process.

Annual Image Quality Testing: QAS Diagnostic Radiological Physicists provide an independent assessment of the operating condition of all diagnostic imaging equipment to assure compliance with State and Federal regulations.

QAS Diagnostic Radiological Physicists are qualified on all diagnostic imaging modalities: R&F; CR & DR; CT; MRI; Mammography; Ultrasound; Gamma Cameras; PET; PET/CT.

2. Radiation Safety Program Compliance Support Services
Annual Audits: QAS Medical Nuclear Physicists provide an independent review of the radiation safety program in accordance with 10 CFR 20.1101(a), which requires that every licensed facility conduct an annual review of their radiation safety program to assure compliance with the regulations.

Quarterly Reviews: QAS Medical Nuclear Physicists assist with routine compliance of State and Federal regulations by assuring all required documentation and testing is conducted properly and timely.

Radioactive Materials License: QAS Medical Nuclear Physicists assist with the drafting and submittal of radioactive materials license application packages and with the drafting and submittal of radioactive materials license amendments. QAS Physicists also assist with the radioactive materials license termination process and with the decommissioning of licensed spaces.

Radiation Safety Officer: QAS Physicists are qualified to fill the position of Radiation Safety Officer (RSO) at any medical facility. All QAS Physicists are currently the RSO for at least one medical facility.

3. Shielding
a. Shielding Plans
All radiation producing equipment installations in hospitals and medical centers are required to have prepared a Shielding Plan. The Shielding Plan conforms to NCRP-147 guidelines and lays out the placement and quantity of lead shielding that may be required for a specific installation. Shielding Plans are submitted for approval in the construction process.

b. Shielding Verification
In order to preclude adding lead shielding to areas that may not need it, QAS Physicists determine the attenuation provided by existing radiation barriers and compare this to the lead shielding requirements called for in the Shielding Plan.

Some counties require that the attenuation achieved by newly installed radiation barriers be confirmed as meeting the requirements of the Shielding Plan originally submitted and approved.

QAS is currently the only company in California licensed to use its radioactive sources to properly determine the attenuation of the radiation barriers.

4. Organ and Whole Body Dose Assessments
Whether from x-ray producing equipment or from injection of radioisotopes, QAS Medical Health Physicists provide an assessment of either (or both) the dose to a specific organ or to the whole body.

5. JCAHO Preparation Review
QAS Physicists provide routine auditing services to all departments which have any responsibility for the radiation safety program operation to assist with readiness for JCAHO.

6. Equipment Selection and Procurement
QAS Physicists are knowledgeable in many areas of equipment operation and can assist with the selection of proper instrumentation. QAS maintains a resale relationship with some key vendors and can frequently provide equipment at discounted prices:
   Fluke Biomedical: all nuclear medicine/PET hot lab equipment
   Isotope Products Laboratory (IPL): radioactive sources
   Ludlum Measurement Instruments (LMI): radiation
      detection instruments

7. Geiger Counter Calibrations
QAS is licensed to calibrate radiation detection instruments. QAS Medical Health Physicists are trained in the operation and calibration of most makes and models of radiation detection instruments.

8. Training
QAS Physicists are available to provide training in any of the areas listed above as services provided by QAS.

9. Problem Solvers
QAS Physicists are highly trained professionals with substantial practical experience in all areas of Diagnostic Radiological Medical Physics, Medical Health Physics, and Medical Nuclear Physics. QAS Physicists maintain a close working rapport with both State and local members of the Radiologic Health Branch so that problems can be dealt with fairly and quickly.

10. Quality Assurance
It is QAS’ philosophy that providing high image quality is the purpose of all that we do in the field of diagnostic imaging. To this end, QAS firmly believes that a high quality QA/QC program will lead to reduced maintenance, reduced down-time, increased operational up-time, lower maintenance costs, and higher image quality as an end product. To this end, QAS Physicists provide your primary professional support.


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