In March 2013, medical consortium Strategic Radiology appealed to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) for formal certification of its patient safety organization (PSO), the first of its kind in the radiology field.
Focus on radiology patient care
According to the AHRQ, PSOs exist to help improve the safety and quality of delivered health care services. Organizations can unite to serve as PSOs for the purposes of collecting, aggregating and analyzing data relevant to the medical profession, helping them identify and develop methods to avoid any evident risks involved in caring for patients.
Strategic Radiology (SR) was founded in 2008 as a national organization of radiology groups dedicated to the sharing of talent, information and techniques. The group has been collaborating on peer-to-peer review of imaging studies and expansion of patient access to radiological subspecialization within member groups since its founding, and its experience working together for the intervening five years made the appeal for formal AHRQ recognition a logical step to take.
SR tapped Director of Quality and Patient Safety Lisa Mead, an esteemed radiological industry veteran, to take the helm of the initiative and oversee the collection and interpretation of patient care data. Strategic Radiology Patient Safety Organization, LLC, (SRPSO) gives radiologists and administrators across the U.S. access to a national network of information and professional collaboration, helping them to concentrate individual as well as collective efforts on the removal of any obstacles in the way of improved patient safety in radiology.
Radiology patient safety at the forefront
The hope within the consortium is that by combining the acquired knowledge of 15 nationally recognized providers of radiological services, SRPSO can help ensure that the radiology industry continues to prioritize the improvement of radiology patient care services and safety. Here's a list of the SRPSO members working to enhance radiology patient safety in treatment centers nationwide, encompassing more than 1,000 qualified radiologists:
- Advanced Radiology Services - Grand Rapids, MI
- Hill Medical Corporation - Arcadia, CA
- Jefferson Radiology - Hartford, CT
- Riverside Radiology and Interventional Association - Columbus, OH
- Charlotte Radiology - Charlotte, NC
- Austin Radiological Association - Austin, TX
- Southwest Diagnostic Imaging - Phoenix, AZ
- Radiology Associates of North Texas - Fort Worth, TX
- Radiology Ltd. - Tucson, AZ
- Inland Imaging - Spokane, WA
- Northwest Radiology - Indianapolis, IN
- Mountain Medical Physician Specialists - Salt Lake City, UT
- Radiology Associates of Sacramento - Sacramento, CA
- Quantum Radiology - Atlanta, GA
- Diversified Radiology - Denver, CO
Director Lisa Mead points out that public demand for radiological treatment has led to increased consumer awareness of the potential hazards that may arise in the process, and SRPSO will dedicate itself to critical patient safety measures such as radiation dosage management at a time when radiology procedures occupy a more prominent place than ever in the public consciousness.
"The initiation of this PSO underscores the fundamental purpose of Strategic Radiology," says Director Mead, "to leverage the inherent expertise within member groups to ensure that quality and service to patients and referring physicians remains at the forefront of radiology."
More information on Strategic Radiology, its member groups and its efforts to increase radiology patient safety can be found on the group's website, www.strategicradiology.org.