|Title||Assessment of Image Quality|
By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will analyse, synthesise, evaluate and apply the knowledge required to develop, undertake and interpret rigorous image quality assessment and image artefact characterisation in their own area of Medical Physics practice, consistent with the roles and responsibilities of a Consultant Clinical Scientist, to ensure the safety and efficacy of medical radiation exposures for patients. The Clinical Scientist in HSST will also be expected to critically evaluate their own response to both normal and complex situations consistently demonstrating the professional attributes and insights required of a Consultant Clinical Scientist.
Knowledge and understanding
By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will analyse, synthesise, evaluate and critically apply their knowledge, including:
- International, national and institutional requirements for image quality assessment in their own area of Medical Physics practice.
- Statutory and institutional requirements of Medical Physics services with respect to image quality assessment and performance.
- Relevant international, EU, national and local standards, recommendations and documentation regarding image quality assessment and specification in the healthcare environment with regard to patient safety/risk management.
- Functions of the main national, European and international organisations concerned with image quality assessment and specification (e.g. FDA, NEMA, MHRA, etc.).
- How to evaluate image quality in their own area of Medical Physics practice.
- Subjective and quantitative image quality parameters for each clinical procedure in their own area of Medical Physics practice, and methods used for their measurement/assessment.
- Manifestation of image artefacts and the physical processes that lead to their formation.
- Choice of image quality parameters and test objects for the monitoring of quality in medical images.
- Advantages/disadvantages of the various types of image quality parameters and test objects.
- Requirements for, and the practical implementation of, appropriate systems for the monitoring of image quality and image artefacts in medical images in their own area of Medical Physics practice.
- Possible impact of human factors with regard to image quality in the use of medical devices for imaging.
- Psychophysical techniques underpinning observer studies in their own area of Medical Physics practice.
- Threshold measurement techniques.
- The ideal observer model.
- Signal detection theory as applied in their own area of Medical Physics practice (e.g. receiver operating characteristic analysis and its derivatives).
Technical and clinical skills
By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will critically apply their knowledge and understanding to develop and evaluate investigative strategies/procedures/processes that take account of relevant clinical and scientific evidence and other sources of information. They will be expected to critically reflect on their performance and apply in practice a range of clinical skills and will be able to:
- Develop and maintain image quality assessment schedules in their area of Medical Physics practice and will:
- select appropriate image quality parameters and image quality test objects for medical images;
- develop rigorous image quality and image artefact assessment protocols;
- design and maintain image quality test objects;
- implement cross-calibration procedures for image quality test objects.
- Critically apply their understanding of image quality assessment by:
- performing image quality audits with respect to patient safety in their own area of Medical Physics practice;
- supervising image quality measurements and image artefact evaluations and interpreting the results;
- advising on the establishment and use of appropriate image quality standards.
- Critically apply their understanding of clinical image quality requirements by:
- performing investigations of clinical image quality;
- advising on the reduction of image artefacts;
- applying the principles of justification (risk/benefit assessment) and optimisation (including ALARA) to protect the patient from unnecessary risk from ionising radiations and other physical agents, and from misdiagnosis.
By the end of the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will critically reflect and put into practice their scientific skills and clinical knowledge in a variety of clinical situations and will:
- Work and communicate effectively with relevant clinicians and other healthcare professionals.
- Advise and communicate effectively with the patient and the public as determined by the scope of practice.
Attitudes and behaviours
By the end of this module the Clinical Scientist in HSST will be expected to evaluate their own response to both normal and complex situations. They will also demonstrate the professional attributes and insights required of a Consultant Clinical Scientist working within the limits of professional competence referring as appropriate to senior staff and will:
- Be mindful of relevant legislation, standards and guidelines.
- Identify and perform thorough and objective collection and consideration of all relevant evidence.
- Be objective in providing advice on image quality assessment and artefact characterisation.
- Influence, lead and support staff in the department/organisation to create a culture that recognises the importance of image quality and image quality improvement in imaging.
- Adapt communication skills while working with a range of stakeholders, including clinical and technical staff, suppliers and other external contractors, listening and being sensitive to the views of each stakeholder, ensuring their views are respected.