News | Press Releases

January 14, 2009


St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center, Washington Hospital Center and Jennie Edmundson Hospital Awarded Grants to Improve Patient Care and Safety in Diagnostic Imaging

TUSTIN, California — January 14, 2009 — Helping to fund programs that improve patient care and safety in diagnostic imaging, AHRA: The Association for Medical Imaging Management and Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc. announced that three leading hospitals were selected as the first winners of the AHRA/Toshiba Patient First Grant Program. St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center in Lewiston, Maine; Washington Hospital Center in Washington, D.C.; and Jennie Edmundson Hospital in Council Bluffs, Iowa were selected by the AHRA selection committee to receive $7,500 grants to fund programs, training or seminars aimed at improving patient care and safety in diagnostic imaging. As part of the grant program, recipients will publish an article in an AHRA publication about their innovative programs and create a best practices tool that can be adapted by other hospitals.

“Available funding for innovative patient care programming is limited today, making grant programs like Patient First more important than ever given the economic pressures on hospitals,” said Penny M. Olivi, CRA, FAHRA and president, AHRA. “We are confident the three programs funded by the Patient First grants will improve safety, help patients and result in new best practices to share with other hospitals and medical facilities across the country.”

The programs funded by the AHRA/Toshiba Patient First grants include:

  • St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center’s “Best Practices in Computerized Tomography”
    Focusing on the use of the ACR Appropriateness Criteria, this program will use evidence-based guidelines to assist referring physicians and other providers in making the most appropriate imaging and treatment decisions, coupled with the most appropriate scanning protocols for CT to image patients more safely.
  • Washington Hospital Center’s “Standardized Handoff Communication”
    This project will develop a regional seminar to present best practices in patient handoff communications consistent with the Joint Commission’s National Patient Safety Goal 2.
  • Jennie Edmundson Hospital’s “Metformin Flagging Process”
    This program focuses on identifying Type II diabetic patients and using an automated barcode system to flag patients who may be susceptible to contrast medium complications. The goal is to develop a decision support rule that will alert pharmacists and withhold administration until assessment of renal function.

“We were impressed with the quality of entries for the Patient First Grant Program demonstrating the dedication these hospitals have to providing the highest level of patient care and safety in their communities,” stated Cathy Wolfe, director, Marketing Services, Toshiba. “Toshiba is committed to developing patient friendly products that improve care and outcomes, and funding programs that inspire innovation in the area of patient care demonstrate that commitment.”

The AHRA and Toshiba Patient First Grant Program seeks to improve patient care and safety in diagnostic imaging through offering grants to fund programs, trainings and seminars at local hospitals. The winning grant programs were selected by the AHRA selection committee and are dedicated to improving patient care and developing best imaging practices in the areas of CT, MR, Ultrasound and X-ray.

About AHRA

AHRA: The Association for Medical Imaging Management is the preeminent organization for leaders in medical imaging. AHRA offers a complete slate of professional development programs, including a comprehensive selection of education conferences and seminars through its Leadership Institute, diverse networking opportunities, award-winning publications and the Certified Radiology Administrator credential. Founded in 1973, AHRA’s more than 4,200 members represent management at all levels for freestanding imaging centers, hospital imaging departments and group practices. More information about AHRA can be found at

About Toshiba

With headquarters in Tustin, Calif., Toshiba America Medical Systems markets, sells, distributes and services diagnostic imaging systems, and coordinates clinical diagnostic imaging research for all modalities in the United States. Toshiba Medical Systems Corp., an independent group company of Toshiba Corp., is a global leading provider of diagnostic medical imaging systems and comprehensive medical solutions, such as CT, Cath & EP Labs, X-ray, Ultrasound, MRI and information systems. Toshiba Corp. is a leader in information and communications systems, electronic components, consumer products, and power systems. Toshiba has approximately 198,000 employees worldwide and annual sales of $77 billion. For more information, visit