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AJR Am J Roentgenol. 2008 Jun;190(6):1445-52. doi: 10.2214/AJR.07.3501.

Prevalence of productivity-enhancing technologies in radiology.

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Department of Diagnostic Radiology, Yale University School of Medicine, 20 York St., Tomkins East 2, New Haven, CT 06520, USA.



The objective of our study was to describe the prevalence of different operational technologies in radiology practices and to identify which characteristics of radiology practices are plausibly causal factors in a practice's use of a technology.


We analyzed data from the American College of Radiology's 2003 Survey of Radiologists, a stratified random-sample survey that guaranteed respondents' confidentiality and achieved a 63% response rate with a total of 1,924 responses. Responses were weighted to make them representative of all radiologists and radiology practices in the United States. We used univariate analysis and multiple logistic regression.


In 2003, PACS, wet-reading telephone lines, film-hanging staff, and templates (standard report language) were each used in practices that encompassed approximately half of U.S. radiologists. In contrast, only 42% of radiologists were in practices that used nurse practitioners or physician assistants for tasks beyond what technologists may do, and only 18% were in practices that used speech recognition software (SRS). Twenty-one percent of radiologists were in practices reported to have neither film-hanging staff nor PACS. The percentage of practices (as opposed to radiologists) that used various technologies ranged from 13% for SRS to 49% for templates. Multiple logistic regression showed that, other factors equal, academic practices were particularly likely to use some of the technologies and solo practices and other small practices were particularly likely not to have some of the technologies.


Most operational technologies are fairly widely diffused, but a surprising number of radiologists work without some basic supports.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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