2012 Annual Meeting Session Preview

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By AHRA Staff

July 2012—This August, Jef Williams, MBA, PMP of Ascendian Healthcare Consulting in Sacramento, CA will present “How to Prepare Your Organization for Radiation Safety and Dose Management.” The session will address radiation safety legislation that was recently passed in California that will require dose capture by 2013. This measure will likely gain nationwide adoption. This session will explain the current state of radiation dose and safety standards, list the ACR and dose reporting requirements, and will help you to create a radiation safety program that can benefit your organization.

Link managing editor, Kerri Hart-Morris, recently spoke to the presenter to get a feel for what attendees can expect from the presentation.

Link: What inspired you to present on this topic?

JW: As a consulting firm headquartered in Sacramento, we have watched closely as the state has moved toward legislative requirements around capturing radiation dose. As a result, we have been asked by our clients to assist with implementing radiation safety programs that include not just dose capturing and monitoring, but proactive measures including protocol standardization, policies and procedures, and education. We find this to be an exciting time as the metrics around dose historically have not played a significant role in how we order exams. What we’re seeing now as a result of the California legislation and the resulting momentum across the country is a desire to reduce radiation dose both at the exam level as well as at the overall patient level. This is happening through the adoption of technology, the implementation of policies and procedures, and the continuing effort to educate staff, referring physicians, and patients.

Link: Why is your topic relevant to our members?

JW: I met recently with the leadership at the California Radiologic Health Branch. They have been contacted by representatives from all 50 states inquiring about the legislation and resulting policies including reporting requirements and auditing methodology. It’s been said, “as  goes California, so goes the nation.” I think that’s true of several places that combine a high concentration of healthcare and proactive government including Massachusetts and New York. That said, these policies are gaining traction and will be adopted in some form, I believe, at both the state and federal level over the next couple of years. On top of that, we know that The Joint Commission will address radiation dose going forward in some capacity – it’s not a matter of if, but when.

Link: How might your presentation impact an attendee’s job and/or organization?

JW: The focus of my presentation is to bring forward the key policies of the California legislation so that everyone knows where this is all headed. But more importantly, I will be addressing the programmatic components of a comprehensive radiation safety program. The content of this presentation comes from our engagements with clients both within the state of California as well as other states where radiation safety programs are being led from a leadership standpoint rather than simply compliance. Of course this positions such providers with a great opportunity to drive awareness and market a higher level of care to their patients.

Link: What words would you use to describe your presentation?

JW: Informative, fast paced, immediately adoptable information, provocative.

Link: How can attendees prepare for your session in order to get the most out of it?

JW: Probably the best preparation is to take inventory of their current radiation safety programs. What exists? Where are the gaps? My goal is to provide tactical information that will assist with next steps.

Link: What do you think attendees will be most surprised to learn from your presentation?

JW: How much opportunity exists to leverage a dose program to educate and ultimately elevate the department both within the enterprise as well as the community.

Link: If attendees were to remember one thing about your presentation, what would you most like it to be?

JW: That it is was worth the hour investment of their time. That it was informative, fun, and provocative.

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