Medical Physics, under the Medical Physics and Radiation Safety, has clinical core responsibilities of 1) ensuring the safe and proper functioning of diagnostic imaging equipment with specific regard to image quality and radiation safety, and 2) assisting in the implementation of as low as reasonably achievable exposure levels (ALARA) to patients, staff, and the public. Diagnostic imaging equipment includes, but is not limited, to all radiography, fluoroscopy, mammography, and dental x-ray machines, computed tomography (CT), positron emission tomography (PET), and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanners, ultrasound imaging devices, and nuclear medicine gamma cameras.
Achievement of these objectives is carried out through a program of:
- On-going diagnostic imaging equipment quality control testing.
- Radiation integrity testing of protective apparel.
- Radiation safety education and training.
- Assistance in meeting regulatory and accreditation compliance standards.
- Specification of radiation shielding requirements.
- Additional professional and technical support for non-routine:
- Patient, staff, or fetal radiation dose and risk estimates from one or more diagnostic imaging procedures.*
- Assistance in improving diagnostic image quality.
- Assistance in reducing radiation exposures in diagnostic imaging procedures.
- Purchase of new diagnostic imaging equipment.
Routine monitoring (radiation badges) of staff exposure levels is carried out by the Department of Radiation Safety.
Medical Physics coordinates activities and works closely with Radiation Safety. Mechanical and electrical safety issues as well as equipment repair are the responsibility of Clinical Engineering.