Premier, Inc. Introduces Radiation Safety Offerings to Better Protect Patients and Healthcare Workers

Hospital Experts From Kaleida Health Discuss Ways to Reduce Radiation Dose

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| Source: Premier, Inc.

CHARLOTTE, N.C., Nov. 1, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Premier, Inc. (Nasdaq:PINC) has introduced new radiation safety offerings in its contract portfolio to help providers better protect patients and healthcare workers.

Premier's radiation safety solution is a group of quality and cost management product categories to reduce the risks associated with the use of ionizing radiation, including cancer, burns, and other injuries. The comprehensive solution is supported by seven Premier contracted suppliers and includes:

  • Physics consulting: A broad range of medical physics services dedicated to improving patient outcomes through the safe and effective use of radiation in medicine. This includes accreditation support, state regulation compliance, and equipment calibration and commissioning.
  • Radiation monitoring: Devices used to capture the doses for individuals exposed to ionizing radiation, such as occupational personnel, patients and emergency response teams. This includes monitoring devices used for area/environmental surveys, readers, and accessory items.
  • Radiation dose tracking: Solutions to capture and document patient radiation exposure in medical records and national dose registries.
  • Radiation dose savings: Iterative reconstruction packages which enable imaging equipment to produce clinically acceptable images with reduced exposure protocols.

Increased attention has been placed on radiation-related medical services due to patient safety concerns, appropriate use criteria, the short- and long-term effects of radiation overexposure, regulatory demands and changes in reimbursement. In fact, several states have adopted legislation to establish requirements for documenting a patient's radiation dose.

"Now more than ever, providers are seeking the optimal balance between the associated risks and diagnostic benefits of radiation-related medical services," said Deborah Raper, director of clinical product planning for imaging and radiation oncology at Premier. "The challenge is to ensure a balanced approach to the safe use of radiology services that supports the benefits while minimizing the risk to patients, workers and public health."

Kaleida Health is an early adopter of Premier's radiation offerings and uses them to improve patient safety. Kaleida Health has been a Premier alliance member for more than 10 years through its relationship with the Greater New York Hospital Association, a trade association comprising nearly 250 hospitals and continuing care facilities, and its acute care group purchasing arm, GNYHA Services, Inc.

Valerie R. Cronin, manager of imaging services for Kaleida Health's Women's and Children's Hospital of Buffalo, N.Y., discussed the processes and tools providers need to reduce radiation dose during a free Premier webinar on October 29. She explained how her organization's Radiation Dose Reduction Committee utilizes its radiologists, staff and consultant medical physics group to oversee and implement an organized approach to patient dose reduction.   

"Radiation risks are amplified by the lack of integrated radiation safety information and oversight. This can be accomplished when you put together a dose reduction team," said Cronin. "Actionable solutions and measurable outcomes are achievable, and can help mitigate radiation risks so providers can stay focused on quality patient care. This becomes even more important when your patients are a pediatric population."

Radiation is used to diagnose and treat disease or damage in the body, including malignant diseases or malfunctioning organs. However, it can also cause serious harm to patients and healthcare workers if used inappropriately. Events like mislabeled images, communication errors, and overexposure and underexposure, can lead to misdiagnoses and bodily injury. In addition, the cumulative effect of multiple exposures to ionizing radiation over a lifetime can elevate both patients' and workers' risk of developing cancer.

For more information on radiation safety visit the Premier Safety Institute® website.

About Premier, Inc., Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award recipient

Premier, Inc. (Nasdaq:PINC) is a leading healthcare improvement company, uniting an alliance of more than 2,900 U.S. hospitals and nearly 100,000 other providers to transform healthcare. With integrated data and analytics, collaboratives, supply chain solutions, and advisory and other services, Premier enables better care and outcomes at a lower cost. Premier plays a critical role in the rapidly evolving healthcare industry, collaborating with members to co-develop long-term innovations that reinvent and improve the way care is delivered to patients nationwide. Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., Premier is passionate about transforming American healthcare. Please visit Premier's news and investor sites on www.premierinc.com; as well as Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, YouTube, Instagram, Foursquare and Premier's blog for more information about the company.

Alven Weil
Premier, Inc.
704.816.5797