Quality assurance holds our radiologists to the strictest standards
Under the direction of Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr. Chad Calendine, who is also co-chair of the ACR General Radiology Improvement Database (GRID) Committee, the Aris Quality Assurance (QA) Council holds every radiologist to the strictest quality standards. The council comprises Aris’ regional medical directors, the council chairman and the QA manager — all board-certified radiologists who meet monthly to review cases and discuss quality initiatives, CME requirements, CMS guidelines, etc.
THE QA COUNCIL MONITORS CLINICAL PERFORMANCE BASED ON CRITICAL SUCCESS FACTORS INCLUDING:
Adherence to ACR and Joint Commission standards and guidelines
Ongoing education and training
Quality over-read processes, and on-site and off-site peer review processes that include ACR’s RADPEER™ program
Management reporting requirements and physician “score-carding”/performance improvement processes
Ongoing physician peer review and focused peer review are the two major quality programs continually in use for quality performance and measurement at Aris. Internal randomized peer review is performed based on the ACR Peer Review guidelines and scoring. (Aris is a part of the ACR eRADPEER™ program for both on-site and teleradiology physicians.)
Aris radiologists review approximately 3% of the total number of studies interpreted during a given month — a sample rate that exceeds the number required by Joint Commission guidelines. This representative sample includes all modalities and is applied to on-site and teleradiology performance alike.
FOCUSED PEER REVIEW
Aris monitors and evaluates the performance of our radiologists through focused professional practice evaluation (FPPE). This internal evaluation of competence takes place immediately after appointment and at any time deemed appropriate through the peer review process, as mandated by Joint Commission and ACR guidelines.
Using feedback from clinicians on a particular radiologist’s reads, in addition to discrepancies discovered during peer review, we determine whether there is a need to evaluate the radiologist’s body of work to identify any patterns relating to the disagreement in question. Should focused peer review findings indicate the need for intervention, we may require the radiologist to complete continuing medical education on the modality and/or body part in question or to focus on another modality/body part where their agreement rate is stronger. In extreme circumstances, the radiologist may be terminated or have limits placed on their privileges.
To ensure the effectiveness of our focused peer review process, we regularly survey the medical staff, administration and technical staff of our client facilities, requesting feedback on performance and suggestions for improvement.
When an over-read is required, Aris assigns a board-certified radiologist with relevant subspecialty expertise to review the images, using ACR scoring guidelines, and prepare a new report. Any unfavorable scoring is immediately sent to Aris’ QA manager and QA chair, who analyze the original and over-read interpretations to identify any variances between these reports. Variances are immediately reported to the referring physician.