The American Society of Radiologic Technologists opposes the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs proposal to allow nurses to order, perform, supervise, and interpret laboratory and imaging studies when providing care for the nation’s veterans.
All patients deserve the best care possible, especially our nation’s veterans who have given so much. It’s the wrong approach to use personnel who don’t have the skills and experience required to perform safe, high-quality medical imaging procedures.
Only registered radiologic technologists should perform procedures that use ionizing radiation, and only experienced radiologists should interpret medical images. Certified nurse practitioners do not have the education, experience or skills required to perform highly technical procedures like conventional radiography and fluoroscopy, computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, nuclear medicine, vascular-interventional or bone densitometry. In addition, they do not have the specialized training to review medical images to properly diagnose injuries and diseases.
In bypassing the health care professionals who are experts in managing radiation dose, patient positioning techniques, equipment protocols and medical imaging physics, the proposal puts veterans at risk for errors, multiple exams and possible radiation overexposure.
We encourage all radiologic technologists to submit comments to the federal government and let them know that you strongly oppose the VA’s proposal to allow nonqualified personnel to perform medical imaging procedures.
Comments can be submitted to the Federal Register at www.federalregister.gov/articles/2016/05/25/2016-12338/advanced-practice-registered-nurses#h-4.