New in this Issue
2012 Proposed Dues Changes and Amendments to AAPM By-Laws
Short Report of the AAPM and ESTRO: Dose calculation for photon-emitting brachytherapy sources with average energy higher than 50 keV
Executive Summary of the Report of Task Group 125: Functionally and operation of fluoroscopic automatic brightness control/automatic dose rate control logic in modern cardiovascular and interventional angiography systems
Facilities Can Now View Letters and Application Review Finding Documents Online
ACR implementing changes effective May 21, 2012
New CAHPS Podcast in Quality Improvement Series
SGR Bill Introduced
News and Updates
Requesting Speakers from CDRH (May 18, 2012)
For medical physicists who wish to have FDA review their credentials to determine whether or not they meet the initial requirements under the MQSA regulations, we now accept requests and documentation by email in addition to mail and fax.
Chapter Meetings: June 2012 - October 2012
2012 AAPM Summer School - Medical Imaging Using Ionizing Radiation: Optimization of Dose and Image Quality - June 24-29, 2012, San Diego, CA
2012 AAPM Annual Meeting - July 29 - August 2, 2012, Charlotte, NC
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AAPM Website Updates
MN Requires Accreditation of Advanced Diagnostic Imaging Services by August 1, 2013
ASTRO requests public comment on QA Safety White Paper "Enhancing the Role of Case-oriented Peer Review to Improve Quality and Safety in Radiation Oncology"
2011 Professional Survey - Now Available
FDA Updates information related to: Initiative to Reduce Unnecessary Radiation Exposure from Medical Imaging
FDA announces a Public Workshop - Device Improvements for Pediatric X-ray Imaging, July 16, 2012
Webcast of the Month: Medical Physics Certification the Path to the Future
ASTRO requests public comment on QA Safety White Paper “The Status of Guidance for Safety, Quality Management and Practice for High Dose-Rate Brachytherapy”
AAPM Newsletter - New Edition Now Available
IOMP e-Zine - Online Newsletter of IOMP
Awards & Honors Committee - Call for Nominations
ACR accreditation programs try to keep pace with evolving clinical practice, technology, and federal regulations. In addition, the ACR continuously explores new ways to reduce the administrative burden on applicants and make the process more efficient. As a result, the ACR will be implementing significant improvements effective May 21, 2012 that will coincide with the launch of the new ACR website. Because of the numerous changes to documents, not all specific changes are listed, but instead are summarized.
Changes for both programs:
ACR will start using Landauer’s state-of-the-art dosimeters (optically stimulated luminescence – OSLs) instead of thermoluminescent dosimeters (TLDs) for improved accuracy and consistency of dose assessments for both the Mammography and the Stereotactic Breast Biopsy Accreditation Programs.
- Any facility submitting an application on or after May 21, 2012, will receive the OSL dosimeters for all units, along with the new instructions.
- Any facility that has already received a TLD dosimeter should expose the TLD, following the accompanying, old instructions.
- Any facility that needs a replacement dosimeter will receive an OSL, with the new instructions.
- Beginning August 19, 2012, Landauer will no longer accept TLDs. Any TLDs received by Landauer on or after August 19 will be replaced with an OSL.
Changes for mammography only:
- All of the mammography digital manufacturer-specific and screen-film accreditation instructions and forms have been combined into 1 set of “universal” documents. (The only exceptions are the Medical Physicist QC Test Summary forms and the technologist’s QC checklists which must remain manufacturer-specific to comply with FDA QC regulations.)
- The ACR no longer requests laser printer or film processor QC charts for mammography accreditation review. (However, facilities must still check that they perform the required printer or processor QC on the appropriate checklist.)
Changes for stereotactic biopsy only:
- The image identification requirements have been changed to be consistent with current ACR guidelines:
- Patient’s first and last names (required)
- Identification number and/or date of birth (required)
- Examination date (required)
- Facility name (required)
- Facility location (city, state and zip)
- Designation of left or right breast (required)
- Annotation of mammographic view (e.g., CC, MLO/ML/LM)
- Technologist’s identification number or initials
- The Testing Instructions and Test Image Data form have been edited for clarity and now outline the following:
- Applicants must submit BI-RADS® Category 4 or 5 calcification biopsy cases
- The 2-view mammogram must be printed “true size” (or have a scale) and must include the entire breast
- Calcifications must be circled on the mammogram
- Calcifications must be visible on both stereotactic views
- Images must be submitted on 10 x 12-in film or smaller (facilities may trim the film to meet this requirement)
- New procedures for the phantom image reduce the number of exposures necessary for a larger FOV system
- New illustrations help clarify the required labeling
You may link to all the new accreditation documents here.
SGR Bill Introduced
The Medicare Physician Payment Innovation Act, introduced by Reps. Allyson Schwartz (D-PA) and Joe Heck (R-NV), has bipartisan support, although many providers have concerns with the legislation... [see full article]