Competency

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Personnel at the University of Washington and Harborview Medical Centers should demonstrate competency to perform dental x-ray examinations. Personnel should have expertise in the following areas to operate medical and dental x-ray devices:

1.  Familiarization with equipment

  • Identification of controls
  • Function of controls
  • How to use a technique chart

2.  Radiation protection

  • Collimation
  • Filtration
  • Gonadal shielding and other patient protection devices if used
  • Restriction of x-ray tube radiation to image receptor
  • Personnel protection
  • Grids
  • Proper use of personnel dosimetry, if required
  • Understanding units of radiation

3.  Film processing

  • Film speed as related to patient exposure
  • Film processing parameters
  • Quality assurance program
  • Identification of film artifacts and corrective actions, if necessary
  • Identification of adequate film exposure on the resultant radiograph, and corrective actions, if necessary

4.  Procedures

  • Knowledge of anatomy and physiology
  • Knowledge of positioning and radiographic demonstration of the requested anatomy with corrective actions, if necessary

5.  Emergency procedures

  • Termination of exposure in the event of automatic timing device failure

6.  Continuing education

  • Continuing education annually to include radiation protection.

Items 1, 2, 5, and 6 are covered in this document. The training supervisor at each facility or department should certify that each person who uses dental and/or medical x-ray devices has expertise in the topics listed above.  The Radiation Safety Office verifies the operational integrity of all dental clinic x-ray devices and the Washington State DOH X-Ray Division makes routine inspections of all units to monitor compliance with WAC 246-225.


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