Question 1
What is the staffing recommendation for 2 magnets sharing the same zone 3? Inpatient and outpatient hospital

Our recommendations would be as follows: 3 persons (MR Level 2 trained). This could be 3 technologists or 2 technologists and a highly trained “Tech Aide”. The tech aide can be trained to do everything except scan. This can include screening and prepping patients, turning the room around for the next exam, etc.

Question 2
How many staff either as technologist or aids are recommended per scanner. for example we have 6 active MRI scanners at my facility.

Our recommendation would be two techs per magnet or a tech and a tech aide per magnet. If you have two magnets sharing the same control area, you could have either 3 techs or 2 techs and a tech aide.

Question 3
If there is an emergency/fire in the middle of the night and no one is working, who do you designate to quench the magnet if needed?

Only MR personnel should have the authority to quench a magnet. Our recommendation would be to have 1 or more security personnel on after-hour shifts trained to 1) secure the area and not allow anyone into Zones III or IV (depending on the exact nature of the emergency) and 2) call a prospectively designated MR Level 2 person who would need to respond and come to the site to assess the situation.

Question 4
What is your process of screening non MRI personnel (EVS, RNs, Anesthesia) that enter Zone 3 and 4. Where do you keep this documentation?

If you have a group of people (a half dozen or so) who regularly assist in MRI, you can screen them annually and keep the screening form on file. We have seen sites use different color lanyards or so-called “badge buddies” or simply a color sticker on a name badge to quickly indicate to an MR technologist that this person has a current screening form on file. Where this information would be kept would be up to the specific site.

Aside from that, anyone and everyone prior to entering Zone III should fill out a screening form.

Question 5
How would you deal with an helium release in the zone IV whilst a patient is being scanned?

In the event of a quench during a patient exam, the patient should be immediately removed from Zone IV. If the primary ventilation system were to fail and there is no secondary ventilation mechanism, the scan room would quickly fill with the helium gas, a pressure lock may be created making it impossible to open the scan room door (in the event of an inward swinging door). In that case one may have to resort to breaking the window to relieve the pressure lock

Question 6
2 people on staff under non-emergent circumstances is mentioned, what is your opinion on a call-back status, with only 1 tech (Just a tech with the patient)

According to the ACR guidelines, in an emergent situation, in addition to the tech there should be one other MR trained person in the Zone II – III area should the technologist require assistance. Our recommendation is to train x-ray personnel to level 1 and have them work with the MR tech when they are called in.

Question 7
Does the ACR have staffing recommendations for technologists coming in “on-call” for an emergent or add on patient outside of regular scheduled hours?

According to the ACR guidelines, in an emergent situation, in addition to the tech there should be one other MR trained person in the Zone II – III area should the technologist require assistance. Our recommendation is to train x-ray personnel to level 1 and have them work with the MR tech when they are called in.

Question 8
We have an outpatient facility staffed with only 1 Front Office Assistant and 1 MRI Tech in the facility. Sounds like this does NOT meet ACR standards?

I would agree that the staffing model you describe does not meet ACR recommendations for non-emergent coverage. However, the ACR provides recommendations, not standards

Question 9
What’s the process for Open Magnet shut down? (quench).

I’m not sure what you mean by “Open Magnet”. I’m going to assume you mean a vertical field magnet. That being said, if the magnet uses permanent technology, then the field cannot be removed. If the magnet uses resistive technology, then you simply remove power to the magnet. If the magnet uses superconducting technology, then you could quench the magnet. If it is superconducting, the quench “button” will be on a wall either inside or outside the scan room. Without knowing exactly to what magnet you are referring, that is all the information I can provide.

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