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Standardization of safe imaging protocols for children needed, experts say

Date:
July 10, 2014
Source:
Mayo Clinic
Summary:
The benefits of medical imaging far outweigh the risks when children receive The Right Exam, ordered The Right Way, with The Right Radiation Dose. However, overuse and misuse of imaging change the benefit-risk ratio, say researchers. "No hospital or medical imaging facility in the country should be granted the privilege of imaging children unless it first meets fundamental safe practice performance measures," says the lead author and radiologist.

The benefits of medical imaging far outweigh the risks when children receive The Right Exam, ordered The Right Way, with The Right Radiation Dose. However, overuse and misuse of imaging change the benefit-risk ratio and Mayo Clinic is leading a collaborative effort to ensure a national protocol is put into action. The commentary, published online in the Journal of Patient Safety, calls for the American College of Radiology, the Joint Commission, the Intersociety Accreditation Commission, and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to require three safety practices for accreditation of all American hospitals and advanced diagnostic imaging facilities.

"No hospital or medical imaging facility in the country should be granted the privilege of imaging children unless it first meets fundamental safe practice performance measures," says Stephen Swensen, M.D., lead author and radiologist, Mayo Clinic.

By design, the three, child-centered measures proposed for accreditation that align perfectly with the National Quality Forum Safe Practice for Pediatric Imaging include:

  1. The Right Exam -- minor head trauma imaging: use of the Pediatric Emergency Care Applied Research Network Clinical Prediction Rule
  1. The Right Way -- protocols to reduce dual-phase head and chest CT imaging
  1. The Right Radiation Dose -- use of size-specific pediatric CT imaging protocols

Randall Flick, M.D., Medical Director for Mayo Clinic Children's Center adds, "Establishing these protocols represents a great step forward on the path to safe imaging for children."

"We have the knowledge and the tools today that can substantially improve the safety and quality of care for our children (while also decreasing costs). We have a compelling opportunity to reduce harm for the most susceptible population: our children,"Dr. Swensen concludes.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Mayo Clinic. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Stephen J. Swensen, James R. Duncan, Rosemary Gibson, Stephen E. Muething, Rebecca LeBuhn, Jean Rexford, Carol Wagner, Stephen R. Smith, Becky DeMers, Richard L. Morin, John Santa, Charles J. Homer. An Appeal for Safe and Appropriate Imaging of Children. Journal of Patient Safety, 2014; 1 DOI: 10.1097/PTS.0000000000000116

Cite This Page:

Mayo Clinic. "Standardization of safe imaging protocols for children needed, experts say." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 July 2014. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140710131020.htm>.
Mayo Clinic. (2014, July 10). Standardization of safe imaging protocols for children needed, experts say. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140710131020.htm
Mayo Clinic. "Standardization of safe imaging protocols for children needed, experts say." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/07/140710131020.htm (accessed August 21, 2014).

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