By Tammy McCausland
This blog post is modified from an article that appeared in Radiation Oncology News for Administrators Vol 32 No 4.
In 1959, D. L. Dewey and J. W. Boag first reported FLASH radiotherapy (FLASH-RT), a novel radiotherapy technology defined as a single ultra-high dose-rate (≥ 40 Gy/s) radiotherapy.1 They called it the “flash effect.”1
MRT, RPT, PRRT . . . whatever you’re calling it, radiopharmaceutical therapy (RPT) has been a major topic of discussion at nuclear medicine conferences for the past six years. Efforts to bring radiopharmaceutical therapies into the clinic are snowballing and hold promise for benefiting patients. Recently, the topic has also started gaining traction in radiation oncology conferences.
SROA members began Day 2 of SROA’s 2022 Annual Meeting with a general session called, “Centering Diversity in Radiation Oncology: The What, The Why, and The How.” Dr. Parul Berry, Dr. Jerry Jaboin and Dr. Ivy Franco provided historical context about diversity and shared some of the personal challenges they have encountered as radiation oncologists from underrepresented minority groups. They offered numerous concrete suggestions on how radiation oncology departments and centers can diversify their radiation oncologist staff and improve their retention. Some suggestions include: giving less weight to test scores; exploring more deeply the reasons for lower test scores (for example, due to lack of financial resources to take test prep courses); and having standardized questions for all interviewees. The panelists also talked about ways to improve retention such as ensuring that the HR partners have the appropriate expertise for specific circumstances.
Managing a radiation oncology department is complex and requires managing many tasks in parallel: overseeing staff, implementing new technologies or treatment options, accreditation, inspections, financial reports, etc. How do radiation oncology administrators keep their departments running smoothly?
Automation is key. Quickly becoming a clinical staple, automation enables departments to do more in less time, transforming workflows for better quality, safety, and efficiency. Providing staff members with the necessary automation tools is an easy way to ensure top-quality patient care.
This blog post is adapted from “Is AI Reshaping the Medical Dosimetrist’s Role,” which was published in Radiation Oncology News for Administrators, Vol. 32 No. 2.
A 2020 Nature article says, “AI could have particularly transformative applications in radiation oncology given the multifaceted and highly technical nature of this field of medicine with a heavy reliance on digital data processing and computer software. . . . AI has the potential to improve the accuracy, precision, efficiency and overall quality of radiation therapy for patients with cancer.”1 Two medical dosimetrists share how they’re using AI and its implications for their profession and patient care.
Content in the blog post is adapted from an article published in Radiation Oncology News for Administrators Vol 31 No 4.
Genomic-adjusted radiation dose (GARD) shows great promise in helping clinicians tailor radiotherapy treatments for patients. SROA first published an article about GARD in 2017. A new study about GARD published in The Lancet Oncology “validates the association between GARD and radiation therapy outcome in a large cohort of patients, across seven different cancer types.” These cancers include cancers of the breast, head and neck, endometrium, melanoma, glioma, pancreas and lung (NSCLC).
Teri Bedard, Executive Director, Client & Corporate Resources with Revenue Cycle Coding Strategies, discusses new technologies. This content originally appeared in Radiation Oncology News for Administrators, Vol. 31 No. 3.
Given the growing number of survivors––22.1 million survivors of cancer by 2030 according to American Cancer Society estimates––specific services will be needed to deal with long-term side effects and tools to help them maintain their quality of life.
In October 2020, the Mayo Clinic and Google Health announced a joint initiative that focuses on applying Artificial Intelligence (AI) to radiation therapy planning and medical imaging. Experts from the Mayo Clinic and Google Health will apply AI to medical imaging.
It’s been said that cancer impacts us all, either directly or indirectly through someone we know. Until earlier this year, I mainly knew of cancer indirectly. My uncle was diagnosed with Stage 4 lung cancer just as the pandemic hit.