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Val Verde Regional Medical Center earns prestigious accreditations in echocardiography, ultrasound, and computed tomography

Monday, July 3, 2017

Hospital news

Val Verde Regional Medical Center's Imaging Department has been awarded not just one, but three prestigious three-year terms of accreditation. One is in Computed Tomography, the second one is in Ultrasound, and the third accreditation is in Echocardiography in the area of Adult Transthoracic. These accreditations are the result of an extensive application and review process of the personnel providing the services, the technical guidelines, and the medical equipment utilized for the services in each area.

The ACR gold seal of accreditation is awarded only to facilities meeting ACR Practice Parameters and Technical Standards, following a peer-review evaluation by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field. Image quality, personnel qualifications, adequacy of facility equipment, quality control procedures and quality assurance programs are assessed. The findings are reported to the ACR Committee on Accreditation, which subsequently provides the practice with a comprehensive report that can be used for continuous practice improvement.

The American College of Radiology (ACR) certifies both Computed Tomography and Ultrasound. The ACR, founded in 1924, is a professional medical society dedicated to serving patients and society by empowering radiology professionals to advance the practice, science and professions of radiological care.

Val Verde Regional Medical Center has earned the American College of Radiology’s (ACR) gold seal of Accreditation in Computed Tomography (CT). This recognition represents the highest level of image quality and patient safety, and shows that VVRMC has voluntarily completed a rigorous review process to meet nationally-accepted standards. CT scanners use x-rays to create cross-sectional images of the inside of the body.

A CT scan—sometimes called a CAT scanis a medical test that helps physicians diagnose and tailor treatments for various medical conditions. The technology found at Val Verde Regional Medical Center is what one would expect to find at major medical centers: ultra-fast CT imaging that produces stunningly clear 3-D pictures of organs, bones, soft tissue and blood vessels. Undoubtedly, "CT is a necessary tool for diagnostic imaging, and here at VVRMC we have the most elite technology to meet the healthcare needs of our community," says Pina Calderon. The hospital has a GE Revolution EVO CT scanner. It is a 128 slice scanner and there are numerous reasons it is beneficial to patients:

  • It reduces radiation exposure, and this high-speed scanner cuts the standard radiation dose by as much as 82 percent.
  • Since its images are so detailed, doctors can more accurately—and quickly—diagnose serious medical problems, from blood clots to tumors.

Medical Ultrasound Imaging, also known as Sonography, uses high-frequency sound waves to produce high-resolution images of internal body parts to help providers diagnose illness, injury or other medical problems. At VVRMC, expecting mothers can have the ultrasound called obstetric ultrasound, which is widely used. Other uses of medical ultrasound include thyroid, kidneys, bladder, gallbladder, and other internal organs ultrasound or sonogram. Ultrasound is also widely used for guided biopsies of many body parts. Diagnostic medical ultrasound is very safe because it does not entail radiation.

The accreditation for Echocardiography is granted by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC). The IAC incorporated all of its divisions into one IAC organization in 2008, but its history began more than 25 years ago. The Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) provides accreditation programs for different imaging modalities. This prestigious accreditation awarded to Val Verde Regional Medical Center Imaging Department demonstrates the facility's constant commitment to providing high quality patient care in Echocardiography. It is comprised of a detailed self-evaluation followed by thorough review by a panel of medical experts. Only those healthcare providers with the highest standards of care receive accreditation.

Echocardiography is ultrasound for the heart. It is used to assess different areas of the heart and can detect heart disease or signs of serious conditions. Val Verde Regional Medical Center has recently acquired the best, most updated state-of-the-art technology to perform Adult Transthoracic echocardiograms. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, followed closely by stroke as the fourth highest cause of death. According to the American Heart Association (AHA), more than 2,150 Americans die each day from cardiovascular disease which amounts to about one every 40 seconds. Prevention is key and the equipment at Val Verde Regional Medical Center can diagnose issues which can be treated before life-threatening medical issues come up.

Radiology Director Pina Calderon said, "We are very proud of our achievements. This accreditation represents the highest standards of quality of service, equipment and personnel." Val Verde Regional Medical Center is the only hospital in the area to have achieved the Ultrasound and Echocardiography accreditations. "I have consistently worked towards providing the very best services to our community," Calderon says, "I have always known our radiology department is outstanding. Now, we have the backing of these national organizations to prove it."

According to Chief Executive Officer Xochy Hurtado and Vice-President of Operations Rhonda Crawford, "In an effort to provide healthcare our community can trust, VVRMC continually promotes the highest level of quality and safety as they relate to the patients receiving the services, the personnel providing those services, and the equipment used to perform them, as well as, the education of patients regarding these services. Being ACR and IAC certified assures our radiology department meets and exceeds the national quality and safety standards. We are very proud of the work of Pina Calderon and her team; they have worked very hard to make this happen. Their dedication to our patients amplify what is outstanding about this organization."

Best of all? "You don't have to travel far to get the very best imaging service," says Calderon, Director of Radiology. "It's right here at home."

"Val Verde Regional Medical Center's senior management is dedicated to investing in the newest technology which will lead us towards being the premier provider of healthcare need," says Calderon.

"We are here to deliver high-quality healthcare service to you and your loved ones. Our dedication means we provide services and equipment others in our region do not. Why struggle with traffic and pay for extra gas when you can obtain superior care right here in your own area?" said Val Verde Regional Medical Center Vice-President of the District Board, Raul Alatorre.