October 15, 2012
The Conference of Radiation Control Program Directors (CRCPD) recently approved Part Z, which concerns medical credentialing. The CRCPD develops and publishes the "Suggested State Regulations for Control of Radiation" which is revised and updated on an ongoing basis. It consists of a number of Parts that relate to various aspects of radiation regulation.
Below is the language from the Part Z rationale that impacts PET/SPECT CT.
"Nuclear medicine and therapy technologist (CT) - Nuclear medicine and therapy technologists are now being allowed (with appropriate education, training and clinical experience) to sit for the ARRT CT certification exam. Successful applicants are now requesting a regulatory change (must be radiographers) in order to perform these examinations. Since they have passed the CT exam one cannot argue that they are unqualified. As such, Part Z needed to be modified in order to accommodate them. This was done by proposing an exemption (from the radiography requirement) for these individuals, which will also eliminate the need for a separate accreditation category (and fee). Although the vast majority of radiographers, who may represent around 85% of all technologists, and the professional societies representing them will not be enamored with this proposal, it cannot be successfully challenged on a health or safety basis (they’re qualified). However, this expected reaction of the radiographers can also be tempered by every ones realization that the decision to allow non-radiographers to sit for the CT certification exam was made by the ARRT, with the concurrence of the ASRT."
"PET/CT and SPECT/CT - this section is also proposing an exemption (from the radiography requirement) for an accredited nuclear medicine technologist to operate the CT component of a PET/CT or SPECT/CT unit when used in the dual combination mode, without any additional education of certification requirements. This position does not appear to pose any health or safety concerns and will again eliminate the need for an additional accreditation category (fusion imaging specialist) and fee. If necessary, consideration can be given to requiring these individuals to also complete a typical manufacturer’s training course for new CT operators. Such courses are usually 15 hours in length, and include equipment operation, contrast media, sectional anatomy and CT radiation protection. Any requirement that the CT portion of the exam must be performed by an accredited radiographer is impractical and unwarranted."
Please find Part Z attached.