Dear Beth, I need some peace of mind

ultrasound examDear Beth,

I am the Executive Director of a Pregnancy Medical Center that has been open for over three years now.

Our two volunteer nurses went to NIFLA’s Institute in Limited Obstetric Ultrasound for their didactic training, our local RDMS provided oversight of over 60 hands on practice scans per nurse, and our Medical Director approved the nurses for performing independent sonography scans.

We are located in an area with about a 60,000 population so we are not real busy.  We perform two to three ultrasound exams a week at our center.

I think the nurses are doing a great job but how do I know for sure that their skills are where they should be? I am asking this because we’ve had an increase in fake clients coming to our center and I’ve heard that an abortion provider is looking at moving to our area.

Is there something I can do to get some peace of mind about this?

Answer:

It sounds like you took the appropriate ‘best practice’ steps in getting your nurses trained in limited obstetric ultrasound. Good job.  You never want take short cuts in getting  your nurses properly trained in sonography.

You raise an important question.

Best practices recommends that the skills of your nurse sonographers are assessed every one to two years.

soundview2I highly recommend Soundview Imaging Partners for this. They are, in my opinion, the best group out there to provide this service.

Here is an excerpt from a page on their website about their assessing program:

“Advancing and Assessing Competence”
Annual skills refresher and assessment for quality improvement in sonography for those who have already been scanning. Completed in approximately 12 hours

    • Provides refreshing in scanning skills, targeting specific concerns such as image optimization, updating and reviewing ultrasound practice;
    • Up to five persons may participate in the annual assessment;
    • Cost is $800 plus travel/lodging expenses; and
    • Continuing education contact hours will be provided for RNs.

Summary:

  • Your nurse sonographers should be assessed every one to two years for quality improvement purposes.
  • I recommend SoundView Imaging Partners for this.
  • Be sure to document the assessments and place in proper file.

Hope this helps to give you some “peace of mind”.

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