MR Phantom Statement
The American College of Radiology (ACR®) recently became aware of irregularities in a subset of MR phantom reviews that resulted in potential accreditation issues for a limited number of magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) units. All of the affected ACR-accredited MRI sites have been notified, and we are working with them at no cost to address this issue without disruption to their accreditation status.
If you have not been contacted by the ACR about an original inaccurate MR final report, then your facility was not impacted.
In addition to contacting all of the affected facilities, the ACR promptly notified the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and set into motion remedial action, including a process to re-evaluate all potentially affected phantom submissions and facility submission histories. We also launched a comprehensive review of our accreditation policies and procedures to determine what improvements can be made to strengthen our assessment process. Going forward, the ACR will require a second physicist to review phantom images for all MR units, and we will be applying to CMS for approval to formalize this policy.
While phantom review is an added quality assurance measure that many other CMS-deemed accrediting bodies do not provide, it is a critical component of our MR Accreditation Program and reflective of the ACR’s high standards. The bottom line is this: inaccurate accreditation reports are unacceptable, and the ACR sincerely apologizes for any inconvenience and burden that our re-evaluation of certain MR phantom images may cause to the affected facilities.
As the nation’s oldest and most widely-recognized accreditor of medical imaging facilities, we are committed to continuing our work to further enhance the integrity of our MR Accreditation Program so that the ACR remains the “Gold Seal” in radiology facility accreditation.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the ACR by calling 1-800-770-0145 and selecting Option 4, or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.