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U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

Radiation-Emitting Products

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Interpreting Physician Responsibilities

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Citation:

900.12(d)(1)(i),(ii)(A)(B): (1) Responsible individuals. Responsibility for the quality assurance program and for each of its elements shall be assigned to individuals who are qualified for their assignments and who shall be allowed adequate time to perform these duties.

(i)  Lead interpreting physician. The facility shall identify a lead interpreting physician who shall have the general responsibility of ensuring that the quality assurance program meets all requirements of paragraphs (d) through (f) of this section. No other individual shall be assigned or shall retain responsibility for quality assurance tasks unless the lead interpreting physician has determined that the individual’s qualifications for, and performance of, the assignment are adequate.

(ii) Interpreting physicians. All interpreting physicians interpreting mammograms for the facility shall:

(A) Follow the facility procedures for corrective action when the images they are asked to interpret are of poor quality, and

(B) Participate in the facility’s medical outcomes audit program.

Questions:
  1. What are the responsibilities of the lead interpreting physician?
  2. What are some examples of corrective actions that facilities may include in the procedures to be followed by interpreting physicians when they see images of poor quality? What constitutes participation in medical audits?
  3. Our mammography exams are interpreted off-site. Do we need to have a lead interpreting physician on-site?
  4. Can a facility designate more than one lead interpreting physician at a time?
  5. Must the lead and audit physician(s) be listed as interpreting physician(s) at the facility?