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Quality

 

Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer-related death in the U.S., but screening rates for the disease continue to be lower than those for both breast and cervical cancers, Courtney C. Moreno, MD, and colleagues at the Emory University School of Medicine reported this month. Colorectal cancer was projected to cause at least 50,000 deaths in the U.S. alone last year, but screening rates top out at 62.4 percent.

A lead-tip angle of 70 degrees has been established as CT pacemaker imaging’s “magic angle,” according to research published in Academic Radiology this month.

Fatigue is a real issue in radiology and affects diagnostic accuracy, according to a new systematic review of the subject published in the American Journal of Roentgenology.

Silent alternatives to conventional MRI scans are showing promising results, but reducing noise in MR angiograms (MRAs) is proving a more difficult task, a team of Stanford University scientists reported in the American Journal of Roentgenology this week.

After a negative mammogram, additional ultrasound for patients experiencing breast pain is unlikely to provide value, according to a study published by Current Problems in Diagnostic Radiology. If additional symptoms are present, however, ultrasound may be worth considering.

 

Recent Headlines

Can studying fine art make you a better radiologist?

Radiology trainees who studied fine art early on in their residency saw a significant improvement in their ability to localize imaging abnormalities, according to a new study published by the Journal of the American College of Radiology.

Radiology Is Too Impersonal Now and It’s Hurting Patient Care

I still vividly remember the protocol for a CT scan of the abdomen and pelvis from 1993. “Give two cups of barium to drink one hour prior to scanning, two cups 30 minutes prior to scanning and one cup on the table just before scanning,” it read. “Parameters included 5-mm scans with a 1.5-mm pitch helically, from domes of the diaphragm to the iliac crest with axial images through the pelvis.” These were the notes handwritten by our chief radiologist for each and every patient requiring the protocol. There were never any shortcuts taken or shorthand used; each protocol was painstakingly written.

AHRA names keynote speaker for 2017 Virtual Fall Conference

AHRA has announced that Jake Poore, a public speaker who specializes in helping healthcare clients provide high-quality patient experiences, will be the keynote speaker for its 2017 Virtual Fall Conference. The conference runs from Oct. 27 to Nov. 10.

ACR announces new education committee to focus on patient engagement, experience

The American College of Radiology (ACR) announced Tuesday that its ACR Commission on Patient- and Family-Centered Care had added a new education committee, which will work to encourage industry professionals to emphasize patient engagement, patient experience and patient satisfaction.

Striking a balance: Radiation not the only risk to consider when imaging pediatric patients

When managing the care of pediatric patients, both referring physicians and radiologists know to always consider the risks associated with radiation exposure. But according to a recent opinion piece published in Journal of the American College of Radiology, focusing too much on those risks and not considering other key factors can end up potentially harming the patient.

The waiting is the hardest part: 4 steps to improving patient wait times

The current focus on patient-centered care and satisfaction has led imaging providers to pay close attention to wait times. Patients can forgive certain things, but making them wait too long is almost guaranteed to translate into a negative opinion about their experience, no matter what else may have happened during their visit.

Radiologists hold patient communication in high esteem, but do they follow through?

The shift from volume to value puts a premium on the patient experience. Radiologists can do their part with effective physician-patient communication, but a survey published in Radiology shows a disconnect between the values espoused by leaders and the ground-level practices of radiology departments today.

Radiologists Experiencing Mixed Results with ACOs: Accountable Care Is Alive, Well—and Unpredictable

As a collectively key component of the Affordable Care Act, accountable care organizations (ACOs) entered the present decade looking poised to enjoy a long and dominant run in the driver’s seat of U.S. healthcare economics. Many providers—not just primary-care “gatekeeper” docs but specialists too—had the sense they’d better join, align with or otherwise befriend an ACO if they wanted to remain enduringly relevant and maximally reimbursable. Today, the buzz is centered on CMS’s Quality Payment Program (QPP), with its MACRA and MIPS alphabet soup hogging the spotlight.

Women’s Impact on the Business of Radiology: The Importance of Gender Diversity and How Many Modern Organizations Are Taking Action

Gender diversity matters. According to research from more than 350 global public companies by McKinsey & Company, companies in the top quartile for gender diversity were more likely to have financial returns above the national median. In the United States, the correlation between gender diversity and improved revenue performance is strongest once women constitute at least 22 percent of a senior executive team.1 Gender diversity within an organization can increase revenue by improving recruiting methods, customer orientation, employee satisfaction and decision making. Increasing gender diversity in radiology, a specialty in which women are currently grossly underrepresented, offers an opportunity to gain a competitive advantage in the healthcare marketplace.

CMS Could Make Significant Cuts to Mammography Services

I visited the great city of Chicago back in April for RBMA’s PaRADigm annual meeting. It was a terrific conference overall, but one moment in particular stands out.

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