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Title: SU-F-T-96: A New Paradigm of Weekly Chart Checking for Radiation Therapy Clinics

Abstract

Purpose: To put forth an innovative clinical paradigm for weekly chart checking so that treatment status is periodically checked accurately and efficiently. This study also aims to help optimize the chart checking clinical workflow in a busy radiation therapy clinic. Methods: It is mandated by the Texas Administrative code to check patient charts of radiation therapy once a week or every five fractions, however it varies drastically among institutions in terms of when and how it is done. Some do it every day, but a lot of efforts are wasted on opening ineligible charts; some do it on a fixed day but the distribution of intervals between subsequent checks is not optimal. To establish an optimal chart checking procedure, a new paradigm was developed to achieve 1) charts are checked more accurately and more efficiently; 2) charts are checked on optimal days without any miss; 3) workload is evened out throughout a week when multiple physicists are involved. All active charts will be accessed by querying the R&V system. Priority is assigned to each chart based on the number of days before the next due date followed by sorting and workload distribution steps. New charts are also taken into accountmore » when distributing the workload so it is reasonably even throughout the week. Results: Our clinical workflow became more streamlined and smooth. In addition, charts get checked in a more timely fashion so that errors would get caught earlier should they occur. Conclusion: We developed a new weekly chart checking diagram. It helps physicists check charts in a timely manner, saves their time in busy clinics, and consequently reduces possible errors.« less

Authors:
; ; ;  [1]
  1. UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22642343
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Medical Physics; Journal Volume: 43; Journal Issue: 6; Other Information: (c) 2016 American Association of Physicists in Medicine; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
60 APPLIED LIFE SCIENCES; 61 RADIATION PROTECTION AND DOSIMETRY; ACCURACY; ERRORS; PATIENTS; PERIODICITY; RADIOTHERAPY

Citation Formats

Tan, J, Pompos, A, Jiang, S, and Yan, Y. SU-F-T-96: A New Paradigm of Weekly Chart Checking for Radiation Therapy Clinics. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1118/1.4956232.
Tan, J, Pompos, A, Jiang, S, & Yan, Y. SU-F-T-96: A New Paradigm of Weekly Chart Checking for Radiation Therapy Clinics. United States. doi:10.1118/1.4956232.
Tan, J, Pompos, A, Jiang, S, and Yan, Y. 2016. "SU-F-T-96: A New Paradigm of Weekly Chart Checking for Radiation Therapy Clinics". United States. doi:10.1118/1.4956232.
@article{osti_22642343,
title = {SU-F-T-96: A New Paradigm of Weekly Chart Checking for Radiation Therapy Clinics},
author = {Tan, J and Pompos, A and Jiang, S and Yan, Y},
abstractNote = {Purpose: To put forth an innovative clinical paradigm for weekly chart checking so that treatment status is periodically checked accurately and efficiently. This study also aims to help optimize the chart checking clinical workflow in a busy radiation therapy clinic. Methods: It is mandated by the Texas Administrative code to check patient charts of radiation therapy once a week or every five fractions, however it varies drastically among institutions in terms of when and how it is done. Some do it every day, but a lot of efforts are wasted on opening ineligible charts; some do it on a fixed day but the distribution of intervals between subsequent checks is not optimal. To establish an optimal chart checking procedure, a new paradigm was developed to achieve 1) charts are checked more accurately and more efficiently; 2) charts are checked on optimal days without any miss; 3) workload is evened out throughout a week when multiple physicists are involved. All active charts will be accessed by querying the R&V system. Priority is assigned to each chart based on the number of days before the next due date followed by sorting and workload distribution steps. New charts are also taken into account when distributing the workload so it is reasonably even throughout the week. Results: Our clinical workflow became more streamlined and smooth. In addition, charts get checked in a more timely fashion so that errors would get caught earlier should they occur. Conclusion: We developed a new weekly chart checking diagram. It helps physicists check charts in a timely manner, saves their time in busy clinics, and consequently reduces possible errors.},
doi = {10.1118/1.4956232},
journal = {Medical Physics},
number = 6,
volume = 43,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 6
}
  • Purpose: A software tool was developed in this study to perform automatic weekly physics chart check on the patient data in ARIA. The tool accesses the electronic patient data directly from ARIA server and checks the accuracy of treatment deliveries, and generates reports which summarize the delivery history and highlight the errors. Methods: The tool has four modules. 1) The database interface is designed to directly access treatment delivery data from the ARIA database before reorganizing the data into the patient chart tree (PCT). 2) PCT is a core data structure designed to store and organize the data in logicalmore » hierarchies, and to be passed among functions. 3) The treatment data check module analyzes the organized data in PCT and stores the checking results into PCT. 4) Report generation module generates reports containing the treatment delivery summary, chart checking results and plots of daily treatment setup parameters (couch table positions, shifts of image guidance). The errors that are found by the tool are highlighted with colors. Results: The weekly check tool has been implemented in MATLAB and clinically tested at two major cancer centers. Javascript, cascading style sheets (CSS) and dynamic HTML were employed to create the user-interactive reports. It takes 0.06 second to search the delivery records of one beam with PCT and compare the delivery records with beam plan. The reports, saved in the HTML files on shared network folder, can be accessed by web browser on computers and mobile devices. Conclusion: The presented weekly check tool is useful to check the electronic patient treatment data in Varian ARIA system. It could be more efficient and reliable than the manually check by physicists. The work was partially supported by a research grant from Varian Medical System.« less
  • The radiation dose received by anesthetists during intrauterine implantation of Ra was estimated. With the usual technique employed in this clinic, involving exposure to 70 mg Ra for 15 min, the dose was estimated to be 6.62 mr/hr. On the basis of a 4-hr work day and 5-day week, this would result in an annual exposure of 6.35 r. This exceeds the recommended min permissible dose by about 20%, even though numerous precautions were taken to lower the dose. The anesthetist was usually 1-2 m from the source of radiation. An improved design of the operating room for this proceduremore » and of a recovery room for patients bearing Ra implants is described. Adequate shielding for patients and operators is provided by the new designs. It is also proposed that operating teams involved in this procedure be rotated frequently to minimize the dose to individual personnel and that a central station be set up for supervising all patients bearing radioisotopes. (BBB)« less
  • Purpose: Radiation therapy has evolved to become not only more precise and potent, but also more complicated to monitor and deliver. More rigorous and comprehensive quality assurance is needed to safeguard ever advancing radiation therapy. ICRU standards dictate that an ever growing set of treatment parameters are manually checked weekly by medical physicists. This “weekly chart check” procedure is laborious and subject to human errors or other factors. A computer-assisted chart checking process will enable more complete and accurate human review of critical parameters, reduce the risk of medical errors, and improve the efficiency. Methods: We developed a web-based softwaremore » system that enables a thorough weekly quality assurance checks. In the backend, the software retrieves all machine parameters from a Treatment Management System (TMS) and compares them against the corresponding ones from the treatment planning system. They are also checked for validity against preset rules. The results are displayed as a web page in the front-end for physicists to review. Then a summary report is generated and uploaded automatically to the TMS as a record for weekly chart checking. Results: The software system has been deployed on a web server in our department’s intranet, and has been tested thoroughly by our clinical physicists. A plan parameter would be highlighted when it is off the preset limit. The developed system has changed the way of checking charts with significantly improved accuracy, efficiency, and completeness. It has been shown to be robust, fast, and easy to use. Conclusion: A computer-assisted system has been developed for efficient, accurate, and comprehensive weekly chart checking. The system has been extensively validated and is being implemented for routine clinical use.« less
  • In a 2-part study, we first examined the results of 71 surveyed physicians who provided responses on how they address the management of patients who maintained either a pacemaker or a defibrillator during radiation treatment. Second, a case review study is presented involving 112 medical records reviewed at 18 institutions to determine whether there was a change in the radiation prescription for the treatment of the target cancer, the method of radiation delivery, or the method of radiation image acquisition. Statistics are provided to illustrate the level of administrative policy; the level of communication between radiation oncologists and heart specialists;more » American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC) staging and classification; National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) guidelines; tumor site; patient's sex; patient's age; device type; manufacturer; live monitoring; and the reported decisions for planning, delivery, and imaging. This survey revealed that 37% of patient treatments were considered for some sort of change in this regard, whereas 59% of patients were treated without regard to these alternatives when available. Only 3% of all patients were identified with an observable change in the functionality of the device or patient status in comparison with 96% of patients with normal behavior and operating devices. Documented changes in the patient's medical record included 1 device exhibiting failure at 0.3-Gy dose, 1 device exhibiting increased sensor rate during dose delivery, 1 patient having an irregular heartbeat leading to device reprogramming, and 1 patient complained of twinging in the chest wall that resulted in a respiratory arrest. Although policies and procedures should directly involve the qualified medical physicist for technical supervision, their sufficient involvement was typically not requested by most respondents. No treatment options were denied to any patient based on AJCC staging, classification, or NCCN practice standards.« less