Tag Archives: MR

MRI Safety, Per ACR Accreditation Standards

“Peachy Keen!”

One can only presume that this is the commentary that US States and radiology accreditation agencies have to offer on the contemporary state of MRI safety. After all, there’s been nothing more than navel-gazing when it comes to measurable changes in standards for MRI providers. Let’s break it down…

Click to Read About the ACR and MRI Safety Standards…

$2.9 Million Settlement Closes Colombini MRI Death Case

This week the settlement documents were released — closing the chapter on the lawsuit that arose from the seminal event in MRI safety, the 2001 oxygen tank fatality of then-six-year-old Michael Colombini.

Click To Learn More About The Accident And Settlement…

Gurney Crashes MRI, Patient Injured, Hospital Fined $50K

It is the stuff of fabled oral-histories, often dismissed as MRI urban-legend. The patient is wheeled into the MRI room on a gurney that goes flying toward the scanner. “How on Earth could these accidents happen when we know about these risks,” the skeptics question? Almost never does more than a single fragment of information surface about these sorts of accidents and, without verification, nearly all accounts can be erroneously written-off as fiction. Or, that was until enough pieces fell into place to conclusively document a recent episode… Click Here To Read More About MRI Gurney Accidents…

2010 ‘Guidelines’ Healthcare Building Code To Have MRI Safety Requirements

“Tweet, tweet” is usually all I hear from little birdies… but one little bird that flew past my office recently had a surprisingly large vocabulary and told me of new requirements that will be introduced in the forthcoming 2010 update to the ‘Guidelines for Design and Construction of Health Care Facilities’ (commonly referred to as ‘Guidelines’).

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Guidelines, they are the design requirements that are cited by the Joint Commission and, at last count, 42 of the 50 U.S. State Departments of Health. Technically, they aren’t a building code, but the function in almost the exact same way. For the first time, the Guidelines are going to have specific MRI suite design requirements for patient safety.

2010 Guidelines

2010 Guidelines

Click Here To Read About The Specific MRI Safety Design Requirements…

RT-Image’s August 3 Issue on MRI Safety

RT-Image brought a stack of their August 3rd issue to the AHRA and handed them out at the MRI safety presentation. Why (apart from general publicity)? Because the primary thrust of the issue was on many aspects of MRI safety. This issue has feature articles on the new MR Conditional pacemaker, infection control in the MRI suite, and even one that I wrote for them…

Click Here For A Link To Tobias’ Article For RT-Image…

MRI Safety Week – Free Training Downloads

Once again, we’re approaching the anniversary date of the most infamous MRI fatality and the corresponding MRI Safety Week. This year, through the in-kind support of my employer, Mednovus, I’m able to make available a MRI safety quiz (actually, it’s two quizzes, one for radiology / MR staff and one for the MRI layperson).

Click HERE To Get To The Downloads…

FMD. Don’t We Have Screening Protocols For That?

One of the most oft-cited rationalizations for not complying with contemporary best practices that call for using ferromagnetic detection (FMD) for MRI pre-screening is that ‘FMD doesn’t catch anything that existing screening protocols aren’t meant to catch.’ What you may find surprising about this statement is that I agree with it wholeheartedly… I would just change the inflection a bit. I would say it more like…

Ferromagnetic detection doesn’t catch anything that existing screening protocols aren’t meant to catch.

That inflection makes a world of difference, as you’ll see in just a moment…

Click These Words Here To See What I Mean…

JCAHO and MRI Safety… Are They Serious?

As you may be aware, the Joint Commission has historically offered nothing in the way of MRI-specific safety standards. MRI may be the only service at an accredited provider that had not even one specific JCAHO standard for patient safety. Yes, all of the broader patient safety standards apply to MRI as they do to the rest of the provider, but with so many unique risks, wouldn’t you think that they would have at least one MRI-specific safety standard?

Click to read more about Joint Commission, MRI safety, and the Environment of Care…

‘No More’ In ’09

With around 8,000 – 10,000 MRI’s in the US alone, I’m not naive enough to think that we can wholly reshape behavior in all, or even a majority, of MRI providers in a single year. I do believe, however, that we can set a realistic goal to improve MRI safety.

Click to read about your part in the ‘No More’ campaign…

MRI Safety Planning Season

Ahh the four seasons… Winter, Spring, Summer, and MRI Safety Planning.

What, you’ve only heard it referred to as ‘Autumn‘ before? Well, that’s not terribly surprising. We’re so inundated with honorary days, weeks, and even months, that the season of MRI Safety Planning fails to get its fair share of media time. But here’s why MRI Safety Planning season should be tops on your list right now.

First, while there is a growing awareness of MRI Safety Week, a single week doesn’t really afford the time needed to plan for improvements to MRI safety. Real improvements come from refinements in operations and process, coupled with effective tools and training. That sort of interdisciplinary approach often requires more than a couple days to put together.

Second, MRI Safety Week falls in the middle of summer when budget-wrangling loses the attention-span battle to thoughts of barbecues and coco-butter suntan lotion. It is precisely now, when so many organizations are hammering out their financial priorities for next year’s budget, that MRI safety planning should be in full-swing.

By combining the operations planning with the budgeting, you can reap some real multi-task benefits from these synergistic efforts, and – buoyed by the support of our whole Mednovus organization – I’m here to help you make it as productive as possible.

When making your MRI safety plans, it’s important to know what new criteria are going to be expected of your facility. Accrediting bodies are all looking at MRI safety in a new way, and this is starting with the Joint Commission’s Environment of Care requirements, effective January of 2009.

There is also the flurry of recent MRI safety Best-Practice recommendations from a number of documents, all of which should be part of the Administrator / Technologist library of reference materials. One common element to the Joint Commission’s Sentinel Event Alert #38, the ACR’s Guidance Document for Safe MR Practices, and the recent Veterans Administration MRI Design Guide, is the recommendation for the use of ferromagnetic detection (see below).

While ferromagnetic detection systems can be readily incorporated into both new and operational MRI facilities with minimal muss & fuss, even the most easily-installed and cost-effective systems typically require advanced budgetary planning.

The upshot? Please start thinking today about your planned MRI safety improvements for 2009 and budget accordingly.

Whether you’re considering the newly-released Mednovus Sentinel® GS 2.0 portals (both the 24-inch Patient Sentinel® GS 2.0 and the 48-inch Entry Sentinel® GS 2.0) or our SAFESCAN® hand-held Target Scanner™ (or the optimal combination of both), it would be a privilege to be at your service.

We at Mednovus are delighted to announce our new association with Siemens Medical Solutions, a world leader in MR imaging, and we encourage you to contact your local Siemens sales rep to get product quotes for your budgeting purposes. Alternatively, simply let us know where you are located, and we will put you in touch with the appropriate Mednovus product expert from Siemens’ national accessories division. Contact us soon so that we can arm you with the information you need to secure MRI safety improvements in next year’s budget.

Yes! Please put me in touch with the right Siemens’ accessories product expert!

By reviewing your current MRI safety protocols against published best-practices, and soon-to-be accreditation standards, you can prioritize the areas for improvement in 2009. In many cases, no-cost operational changes will help you achieve your goals, but whether it’s a new MRI-friendly infusion pump, improved signage, or the thrice-recommended ferromagnetic detector, you will probably need to have a few MRI safety line-items in next year’s budget.

Please contact us if we can be of any assistance in helping you with your observances of MRI Safety Planning season.

Tobias Gilk, President & MRI Safety Director
Mednovus, Inc.
Tobias.Gilk@Mednovus.com
www.MEDNOVUS.com