While large health care systems often have some flexibility with their budgets, small offices must be more cost conscious. Small practices must carefully weigh whether expenditures have a significant amount of return on investment to warrant a budget line item. So, what are the essential elements every office must have to maintain a strong radiation safety program?
- Dosimeters– Every employee who administers X-rays should wear a dosimetry badge to measure the amount of radiation to which he or she is exposed. While employees often leave the room when obtaining X-ray images, accidental exposures to scatter radiation can happen. The Instadose+ dosimetry badge allows small offices to capture dose information instantly by downloading results to a computer, smartphone or mobile device, eliminating the need for badge collection and redistribution. It also sends an email alert when the badge wearer has exceeded the specified dose exposure.
- Shielding– It is recommended to use proper protection for patients while administering tests that involve ionizing radiation. Lead vests and thyroid shields should be used for patients, and employees should shield themselves from radiation exposure by standing behind a protective wall when administering the tests.
- Equipment maintenance – Proper functioning machines are worth the investment. It is recommended that machines are regularly inspected to ensure proper performance for the accuracy of images and the safety of employees.
Once these elements are in place, patients and employees can see every precaution has been taken to ensure their protection. Efforts such as these go a long way toward establishing a good reputation in the community — and building a business.