What Patients Should Know
Welcome to the Patient Information section of IAC MRI online. The IAC provides the following information about MRI facilities as a service to the general public. This section is designed to help prospective patients stay educated and informed about MRI testing and the importance of accredited facilities.
IAC Accredited Facilities
The Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) offers an online tool to assist patients in locating an IAC accredited facility. When scheduling a procedure, patients are encouraged to research the accreditation status of the facility. Find An IAC Accredited Facility»
What is a Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) examination?
Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) is a safe diagnostic imaging procedure that combines a powerful magnet, radio frequency waves and computers to view the body without subjecting you to x-ray or potentially harmful ionizing radiation. MRI provides high quality contrast resolution (the ability to distinguish two separate but similar structures from each other) images of the soft tissue structures in the body. The “banging” noises associated with the exam are the magnetic gradient fields changing rapidly to produce cross-sectional pictures of the body from various angles. MRI has become instrumental in the diagnoses and treatment planning of a multitude of ailments ranging from cancer, sports related injuries, neurological and vascular disease processes. For certain medical conditions, MRI may provide better overall diagnostic quality images than other imaging studies.
Physicians who recommend that their patients get a MRI study must be knowledgeable about the examination and the patient’s medical/surgical history as there are electrical, mechanical and surgical devices that may be contraindicated presenting potential risks to the patient. The benefits of MRI technology when used appropriately can help diagnose and evaluate many disease processes, however, the quality of the MRI examination is dependent on knowledgeable staff that are ordering, performing and interpreting the MRI procedures.
IAC Accreditation –“Seal of Approval” Patients Can Count On
Hospitals, physician offices, medical centers and imaging departments that are accredited by the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission (IAC) undergo a rigorous review of the MR operations pertaining to patient care in their facility. A comprehensive quality assessment program must be in place that evaluates patient safety inclusive of patient screening and equipment testing to ensure the safety of the patient during the MRI examination. Specialists in the MR community such as physicians, technologists, radiologists and physicists evaluate these sites and determine if they meet the guidelines. Accreditation is granted only to those facilities that are found to be providing quality patient care, in compliance with the IAC Standards. Once granted, IAC accreditation is valid for a period of three years, after which time the facility must undergo a repeat evaluation.