The mammography department of Huguley Imaging Center
received a perfect score on its recent annual inspection by the Food and Drug Administration. The certified inspector examines mammographic equipment, personnel training, and quality control procedures and frequencies. The inspection certifies that the facility maintains stringent quality standards, thus ensuring patients receive high-quality images to facilitate early breast cancer detection.
“We have always taken pride in our scores on our annual MQSA inspection, but this year we are especially proud the inspector found no deficiencies in the six-hour exam. We credit this to our thorough, attentive staff and our digital mammography equipment,” said Diane Hanson, Huguley Imaging Services Director.
In 1992, the United States Congress approved the Mammography Quality Standards Act (MQSA) to regulate and inspect mammography facilities. Requirements include:
• Physicians who interpret mammograms, radiologic technologists who perform mammography, and medical physicists who survey mammography equipment must have adequate training and experience.
• Each mammography facility must have an effective quality control program and maintain thorough records.
• Each facility must submit typical mammography images to the FDA for review. The FDA will evaluate the mammogram’s quality and the amount of radiation used to obtain the images (radiation levels are required to be low).
• Each mammography facility must provide timely written communication to patients and their physicians, must develop systems for following up on abnormal mammograms, and must obtain biopsy results.
“The purpose of the inspection is to assure patients that they are receiving a quality mammogram on accurate equipment by qualified staff. Although the inspection is a one-day event, the efforts to provide precise, reliable mammograms continue with each patient we treat,” said Hanson.
Much of the Huguley Imaging Center staff has received specialized training in mammography. Dr. Nadia Shah, a board-certified radiologist, has recently completed a fellowship in breast imaging, and ultrasound technicians are certified in breast imaging.
“One thing the inspection can’t measure is the bond we build between our patients and our mammo techs. We have a very high rate of women returning for their annual mammogram, which in turn helps us provide better care by allowing us to compare the images from year to year,” Hanson continued.
Huguley Imaging Center has two digital mammography machines, which are twice as fast as traditional mammograms and uses soft, warm pads for the patient’s comfort. The outstanding image quality yields a 28% increase in breast cancer detection at its earliest stages.