“It is shocking to me that in many states individuals who operate these devices do not need to be licensed and are therefore not regulated at all in terms of education and expertise,” Health Subcommittee Chairman Frank Pallone Jr. (D-N.J.) said at the opening of the hearing. “Even in states where there are licensing requirements, the requirements to report errors and the penalties for making errors are basically non-existent or not enforced. As a result, we have no idea how often these errors occur and have no good data on where the weaknesses in the system truly are.”
In his testimony, American Society for Radiation Oncology Chairman Tim Williams said Congress could make inroads toward improved patient safety by empowering groups such as the National Institutes of Health's Radiological Physics Center and the Advanced Technology Consortium to expand their work. The groups develop radiation-dose delivery standards and quality-assurance protocols for advanced radiology procedures.
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