Nuclear Medicine Technologists are trained in Nuclear Medicine, and must be licensed in New York State; they are supervised by the Senior Associate Director of Radiology, Assistant Physicist, Attending Physicians and Chief of Service for duties in their assigned areas.
-Nuclear medicine technologists are trained in laboratory technology and are supervised by the Assistant Physicist, Attending Physicians, and Chief of Service.
-Working in conjunction with the Nuclear Medicine Clerical Associate, they are responsible for scheduling patient’s procedures to produce a smooth flow of patients through the department.
-Answer questions regarding patient preparation for a procedure; consult with chief of service or associate physician concerning appropriateness of scheduled tests.
-Inspect inventory of supplies daily to ensure that adequate quantities are available to complete scheduled examinations. Order radiopharmaceuticals for future studies providing the type and amount of radiopharmaceutical, scheduled time of administration and licensee number, including unit doses.
-Determine the amount of radiopharmaceutical to be prepared, given the amount per dose as determined by the Chief of Service, number of doses, the scheduled time of each administration and the stability of the radiopharmaceutical.
-Aseptically prepare and handle all substances for I.V. administration; label substances indicating date, time of preparation, lot number, concentration, activity and type and log in appropriate ledgers. Verify the activity of radiopharmaceuticals, batches of kit preparations, and unit doses utilizing the dose calibrator.
-Determine if the dose to be injected is of appropriate volume to maximize the information obtained (a small, compact dose (bolus) for dynamic imaging.)
-Store prepared radiopharmaceuticals and other reagents in compliance with the manufacturer’s specifications to enhance stability. Prepare ventilation and gas collection system prior to a ventilation study. Prepare technetium-99m flood source for camera quality control utilizing aseptic technique and radiation safety precautions.
-Peak gamma camera to maximize appropriate photon peak using radioactive point or sheet source and record data obtained. Perform uniformity check of gamma camera daily under standardized conditions using radioactive point or sheet source.
-Maintain records of all quality control procedures as required by regulatory agencies.
-Read patient’s requisition to determine procedure ordered, and note special instructions or precautions. Prepare imaging room for procedure using clean lines and isolation technique when necessary.
-Select correct radioisotope, correct pharmaceutical and correct activity requested by the patient’s requisition from the correct drawer in the radioisotope storage cabinet; put the syringe into a syringe shield and carrying case. If the unit dose is split, label the new syringe and put the unused syringe back into the lead pig. Put the lead pig back into the correct lead drawer.
-Identify the patient scheduled for a procedure prior to initiating the test using two patient’s identifiers (name and date of birth), and obtain formal written consent when necessary. Explain to the patient the procedure to be followed and gain the patient’s cooperation. Reduce anxiety using language understandable to the person involved.
-Question the patient about their medical history and any previous imaging procedures to gain additional information to help the physician interpret the results of a scan or to modify the procedure.
-Query female patients of child bearing age about possible pregnancy or nursing to avoid exposure of fetus or newborn child to radiation. Do not administer radioactive material to a pregnant patient. Report immediately to the Nuclear Medicine physician if a patient is pregnant or nursing.
-Select optimum instrument and collimator using knowledge of the study being performed and characteristics of the particular radiopharmaceutical being administered.
-Administer oral diagnostic dose under written request of a licensed physician.
-Administer intravenous injection dose of radiopharmaceutical using lead shielded syringe and aseptic technique and radiation safety precautions under written request of a licensed physician.
-Observe patient for adverse reactions to the radiopharmaceutical or the injection. Assist the patient onto and off of the table or stool to avoid patient injury using proper body mechanics and lifters to avoid personal injury.
-Position patient and/or camera to obtain the desired view. Immobilize patient or area of interest when necessary, using tape, straps, sandbags, etc.
-Monitor gamma camera and patient during the procedure to detect malfunctions or patient motion. Process images, and label with view, orientation, and patient identification. Check technical quality of the image to determine need for additional views or get approval from the physician prior to releasing patient from department.
-Record patient’s name, date, and time of administration of the radiopharmaceutical dose into the log in the Hot Lab computer. Document department’s activities and quantity and type of radiopharmaceuticals used each day. Assist in arranging for transportation of in-patients to and from the department.
-Monitor accessory medical equipment attached to patient while in department, i.e. IV’s, oxygen tanks, etc. Patients on respirators or receiving blood must be accompanied by a PA, RN or MD. Recognize need for and initiate aid to patients in shock or cardiac or respiratory distress. Place appropriate electrocardiographic gating leads (ECG) on patient for computed cardiac imaging.
Initiate computerized data acquisition, selecting program prescribed by department protocol. Perform routine imaging procedures and measurement procedures to provide data for the detection or evaluation of various pathologic conditions including the following:
- Cardiac Single Pass
- Gastrointestinal Evaluation (Gastric Emptying, gastroesophageal reflux in young children, gastrointestinal bleeding)
- Hepatobiliary Function and Patency
- Kidney Function
- Lung Ventilation
- Lung Perfusion
- Myocardial Infarction
- Myocardial Perfusion (stress and rest)
- Myocardial viability
- Renal (Dynamic/Static) w/wo drug intervention
- Shunt study (cerebral, LeVeen)
- Thyroid Evaluation (uptake and scan)
- Thyroid cancer evaluation using iodine-131
- Ventricular Function (LVEF)
- Ventricular Wall motion
- Esophageal reflux
- Bladder (vesicoureteral reflux)
-Technologists maintain compliance with standards of radiation protection by wearing issued film badges and ring dosimeters to monitor personal radiation exposure, which is evaluated and charted monthly.
-Reduce risk of contamination or exposure caused by spills of radiopharmaceuticals or damage to shipping containers of radioactive materials by informing the radiation safety officer, covering the area with absorbent material, and isolating the area from unauthorized personnel.
-Survey areas where preparation and injection of radioactive materials occurs with a survey meter perform wipes tests while wearing gloves, and record as prescribed by city, state or federal regulations.
-Survey and visually inspect all incoming radioactive materials for damage to container using survey meter and gloves as indicated in regulations. Perform and record receipt of radioactive shipment checks and records.
-Store all radioactive material with appropriate shielding in restricted areas. Label radioactive materials for disposal with radiation hazard symbols. Should a misadministration occur, notify appropriate personnel according to department protocol in order for the chief of service to comply with city, state, and federal regulations.
-Daily performance of housekeeping functions of equipment, glassware, and facilities, etc., as indicated by the supervising technologist: 1) upon arrival for duty, departmental equipment is to be wiped down daily; 2) throughout tour of duty, work areas are to be maintained by technicians-they are to be clean, uncluttered, and free from contamination and other potential hazards to personnel and patients; 3) immediately before completion of tour of duty, technicians are responsible for removal of debris from equipment and work areas and leaving equipment and facilities in a clean and orderly state.
-Graduate of a JRCNMT approved program in Nuclear Medicine
-Board Certified (AART-NM or NMTCB) preferred, but not required. Effective July 1, 2015, must have ARRT or NMTCB Certification. Dual Certification is preferred.
-New York State Radiologic Technologist, limited to the practice of Nuclear Medicine.
-Verbal and written skills to facilitate communication with medical technical personnel. Ability to deal efficiently and courteously with all hospital personnel and patients.
-Moderate amount of lifting and positioning of patients and equipment. Walking and standing 70 percent of the time.
-Limited, monitored exposure to radioactive materials; exposure to electromagnetic radiation as in CRT’s, VDT’s; hospital environment (infectious diseases).
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