Following a rigorous approval process with months of preparation, Saratoga Hospital has been designated a Diagnostic Imaging Center of Excellence (DICOE) by the American College of Radiology (ACR), said to be the highest form of recognition an imaging department can receive nationally.
The designation applies to the imaging facilities at both the hospital and Wilton Medical Arts locations, the first to earn this recognition in Upstate New York north of Orange County and east of Buffalo, according to the hospital.
“Meeting the requirements to earn this accreditation in all the imaging modalities that we provide was a daunting process, but we knew we not only could do it, but should do it. Our patients deserve no less,” said radiologist Dr. Philip Fear, president of Millennium Medical Imaging and chairman of Saratoga Hospital’s Medical Imaging Department. “A lot of hard work by our exceptional radiology staff went into this achievement, a dedication they give to their work every day.”
The DICOE program is an achievement that goes beyond accreditation to recognize best-quality imaging practices and diagnostic care. This includes a comprehensive assessment of the entire medical imaging enterprise, including structure and outcomes.
The DICOE designation recognizes excellence at multiple levels—including the professional staff, the technology and the policies and procedures the organization follows—and superior patient care.
“We could not be more proud of our medical imaging team for making Saratoga Hospital the first in nearly all of upstate New York to be designated an ACR Diagnostic Imaging Center of Excellence,” said Jeffrey Methven, vice president of Saratoga Hospital’s Ambulatory Services and chief human resources officer. “It indicates our Medical Imaging Department has surpassed standard requirements of accreditation. This designation provides patients with the utmost confidence of receiving today’s highest levels of imaging quality, safety and care.”
Saratoga Hospital’s medical imaging services are performed by technologists and results are read by board-certified physicians. Saratoga Hospital offers the following imaging procedures: breast MRI, cardiac scoring, coronary CT angiography, CT scanning, DEXA scanning for osteoporosis, digital fluoroscopy, mammography, MRI/MRA, nuclear medicine, PET/CT, ultrasound and X-ray.
These radiology services have long been accredited by the American College of Radiology, and the new designation is intended to assure the public the services exceed the highest standards of care.
In order to receive this distinction, facilities must be accredited by the ACR in all modalities they provide, and in which the ACR offers an accreditation program. Another requirement is to participate in the Dose Index Registry and General Radiology Improvement Database, as well as Image Wisely and Image Gently.
The ACR, founded in 1924, is one of the largest and most influential medical associations in the United States. The ACR devotes its resources to making imaging and radiation therapy safe, effective and accessible to those who need it. Its 36,000 members include radiologists, radiation oncologists, medical physicists, interventional radiologists and nuclear medicine physicians.