News | Press Releases

January 17, 2011


Six Winners Selected for Programs Focused on Patient Care and Safety in Pediatric and Adult Imaging

TUSTIN, Calif., Jan. 17, 2011 – Helping facilities to build new or expand upon existing education and patient care initiatives in diagnostic imaging, AHRA: The Association for Medical Imaging Management and Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc. announced the six recipients of the third annual Putting Patients First grant program. The AHRA and Toshiba’s Putting Patients First grant program helps healthcare facilities improve patient care and safety in diagnostic imaging by funding programs, trainings and seminars in the areas of CT, MR, Ultrasound, X-ray and Vascular.

This year, the six recipients include Northeast Georgia Medical Center (Gainesville, Ga.), Children’s Hospital & Medical Center (Omaha, Neb.), St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center (Paterson, N.J.), Medical Center of the Rockies (Loveland, Colo.), Sublette County Rural Health Care District: Pinedale & Marbleton Medical Clinics (Pinedale, Wyo.) and Overlake Hospital Medical Center (Bellevue, Wash.).

Three grants were awarded for projects that improve the safety and comfort of pediatric imaging, and the other three grants were awarded for projects that improve overall patient care and safety in imaging. Recipients were selected by the AHRA selection committee to receive up to a $7,500 grant to help fund their patient care and safety programs. Beyond receiving funds, the grant recipients will also publish an article in an AHRA publication about their innovative programs and create best-practice tools that can be adapted by other hospitals. The Putting Patients First program is funded by an unrestricted educational grant from Toshiba America Medical Systems, Inc.

“Grant programs like Putting Patients First are critical in the ever-changing landscape of the healthcare industry,” said Roland Rhynus, AHRA president, CRA, FAHRA. “Hospitals continue to face limited resources and other financial challenges and these grants give them the opportunity to make significant improvements to patient care, bettering the imaging experience for both patients and physicians.”

The programs awarded the 2010 AHRA/Toshiba Putting Patients First grants include the following:

Northeast Georgia Medical Center – Benefits of a Community CT Imaging Record and Reduction in Radiation Dose

Northeast Georgia Medical Center will help improve patient care and safety in diagnostic imaging by creating a wallet-sized CT Imaging Record that patients can carry with them, indicating whether or not a CT scan has been performed. The card will include the date and facility name where the imaging procedure took place. Having this information on hand will inform the referring or ED physician of the patients’ imaging exam history with the goal of helping to reduce the number of duplicate CT scans ordered and thus the amount of radiation a patient receives.

Children’s Hospital & Medical Center – Artwork Wraps for Pediatric MRI Machines

Further enhancing their welcoming atmosphere in the radiology clinic, Children’s Hospital & Medical Center plans on extending its child-friendly décor onto their MRI machines. Children’s Hospital & Medical Center has experienced success with their unique underwater-themed environment, which includes wall art, a fish tank and fish hanging from the ceiling. By implementing this décor onto the machines themselves, Children’s aims to increase comfort for children and their families, which could help them decrease the need for sedation, acquire quicker exam results and improve diagnoses and treatment.

St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center – The Alphabet of Imaging: MRI & X-Ray

Striving to make the imaging process less stressful for pediatric patients, St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center plans to develop six informational segments to educate pediatric patients, parents, colleagues and technologists on what is involved in MRI and X-ray imaging. The objective for this program is to create a safer imaging environment for pediatric patients by obtaining optimal imaging exams on the first attempt.

Medical Center of the Rockies – Utilizing Hypnosis to Decrease Pharmaceutical Sedation in MRI

Medical Center of the Rockies will create a hypnosis program aimed at decreasing the need to sedate patients. Medical Center of the Rockies will develop training that demonstrates how hypnosis improves patient care and safety by reducing sedation during MRI exams, improving communication, comfort and the overall clinical experience.

Sublette County Rural Health Care District (SCRHCD): Pinedale & Marbleton Medical Clinics – SMILE

Increased radiation exposure or delay in diagnosis are two serious consequences when a patient moves during the imaging process of CT or X-ray exams. In order to improve pediatric patient outcomes during these imaging procedures, The Radiology Department of the SCRHCD will create a program called SMILE. The SMILE program will include six components: a children’s book, an accompanying adult pamphlet, a mobile protective screen, an infant and child “hugger” for CT scans and X-rays, a pediatric positioning kit and a smiley face sticker. Taken together, these components will help patients to understand CT and X-ray so that optimal exams can be achieved.

Overlake Hospital Medical Center – TRACE Program – Tools for Radiation Awareness & Community Education

Patient safety and satisfaction are top priorities for Overlake Hospital Medical Center. To increase patient safety and improve patient awareness about radiation exposure in medical imaging procedures, Overlake Hospital will implement the TRACE Program to research industry benchmarks for safe and effective radiation dose, conduct accurate dose monitoring and recording on all radiation-producing equipment, and produce marketing materials to educate current and prospective patients about the risks associated with radiation exposure.

“Toshiba is committed to improving patient care through the development of innovative and advanced medical imaging technologies,” said Cathy Wolfe, senior director, Corporate and Strategic Communications, Toshiba. “The Putting Patients First grant allows facilities to improve patient safety and comfort, provide continuing education for physicians and share best practices with other clinics, very important factors for delivering top-tier care in diagnostic imaging.”

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 4,000 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 worldwide leader in technology, electronic and electrical products, digital consumer products, electronic devices and components, power systems, industrial and social infrastructure systems and home appliances. Toshiba was founded in 1875 and today operates a global network of more than 742 companies with more than 204,000 employees worldwide and annual sales surpassing $68 billion. For more information, visit Toshiba’s website at