ASRT National Radiologic Technology Week® Kicks Off Nov. 7

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Recognizing the Professionals Who Safely Perform Diagnostic Imaging Exams and Administer Radiation Therapy Treatments

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The timing of NRTW couldn’t be better this year. We are encouraging our members to celebrate NRTW and also use it as a platform to urge their elected officials to pass the CARE bill.

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Providing patients with safe medical imaging examinations and radiation therapy treatments is the prime goal for the nation’s radiologic technologists. As a result, the American Society of Radiologic Technologists is once again proud to recognize R.T.s during National Radiologic Technology Week®, Nov. 7-13.

The ASRT established NRTW in 1979 to honor German physicist Wilhelm Conrad Roentgen’s discovery of the x-ray on Nov. 8, 1895. However, the event has transformed into a celebration that acknowledges R.T.s’ commitment to safely administering ionizing and nonionizing radiation and showcases their contributions to the health care community.

“As radiologic technologists, we want to provide patients with outstanding and safe care,” said ASRT President James Temme, M.P.A., R.T.(R)(QM), FASRT. “In addition to closely working with patients during medical imaging exams and radiation therapy treatments, qualified R.T.s can help protect patients from unnecessary medical radiation.”

The 2010 NRTW celebration is well-timed as there has been heavy attention this year in the media, health care community and on Capitol Hill about medical radiation. In response, ASRT chose “Delivering Picture-perfect Care” as the theme for NRTW. It represents R.T.s’ commitment to capturing quality medical images in order to help diagnose diseases and highlights their dedication to minimizing medical radiation dose.

Additionally, the timing of this year’s NRTW falls immediately prior to Congress’s return to Capitol Hill on Nov. 15 after its district work period concludes. With the Consistency, Accuracy, Responsibility and Excellence (CARE) in Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapy bill being reviewed by the House and Senate, the ASRT is optimistic that the surge from NRTW will help Congress focus on the CARE bill and use it to establish federal education and certification standards for all medical imaging and radiation therapy professionals.

Currently, licensure laws for personnel who perform medical imaging procedures or administer radiation therapy are established at the state level, and five states still do not have licensure laws in place for any medical imaging or radiation therapy personnel. ASRT contends that hairdressers are better regulated in those states than are individuals exposing patients to ionizing radiation.

“The timing of NRTW couldn’t be better this year,” said Temme. “We are encouraging our members to celebrate NRTW and also use it as a platform to urge their elected officials to pass the CARE bill. The bill will ensure that individuals performing all aspects of medical imaging and radiation therapy are qualified, resulting in a highly qualified group of certified professionals who will keep medical radiation dose levels as low as possible for patients.”

With the spotlight on medical imaging and radiation therapy, ASRT believes that this year’s NRTW is a prime opportunity to educate patients, legislators, the general public and other health care professionals about the important role of radiologic technologists and how qualified R.T.s can help reduce overuse of medical radiation. Visit http://www.asrt.org/nrtw to learn more about NRTW. For information about the CARE bill, visit http://www.asrt.org/care.

About ASRT
The ASRT represents more than 137,000 members who perform medical diagnostic imaging procedures or plan and deliver radiation therapy. The Society is the largest radiologic science association in the world. Its mission is to advance the medical imaging and radiation therapy profession and to enhance the quality of patient care.

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Annemarie Ciepiela Henton
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