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Limiting Exposure in Abdominal Imaging in the Age of COVID-19

by Jonathan McCullough

Hospitals and imaging centers are looking for ways to limit exposure and potential transmission of the coronavirus between their patients and medical staff. One way is to limit their interaction with one another.

While hospitals work diligently to reduce intra-hospital infection, radiology departments and imaging centers are taking an extra step to limit patient to staff exposure/transmission.

The traditional waiting room is the next battlefield for intra-hospital infection. Patients with unknown levels of potential previous exposure congregating in a single room with healthcare workers tending to other more vulnerable patients is a risk no one wants to take.

Mobile Waiting Rooms

Wait in Car is an mobile application that allows the imaging departments to better manage patient workflow. Patients wait in their cars rather than in the waiting room, limiting their contact with other patients and medical staff.Patient waiting in car

Advanced Radiology in Shelton, Connecticut started using the app in May.

“Our first priority has always been the health and safety of our patients,” said Clark Yoder, Advanced Radiology’s CEO. “The Wait In Car application empowers us to help prevent the spread of the virus, while providing a safer, less stressful environment for our patients and our staff.”

What Goes Out to the Car?

While social distancing is a critical measure in reducing spread of infection, the surfaces we share are also important.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that “it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.”

Patients are safe in their cars, but there are still unavoidable spots of contact with staff: the imaging suite, reception, and oral contrast.

Even though COVID-19 does not transmit very effectively through food, it may be another avenue of risk, especially when you consider the number of surfaces touched in preparing the oral contrast: the cup, flavoring agent, water, countertop, etc.

In many instances, there are multiple cups that the patient needs to drink for an optimal image and accurate diagnosis. Multiple cups in a mobile waiting room isn’t ideal and even without a pandemic, preparing oral contrast for a busy imaging department can be tedious even for a mixologist.

Sarah Mager, the CT Supervisor at St. Francis Hospital and Medical Center in Hartford, CT, experienced precisely this in her own department. “We would mix the contrast with Crystal Lite®, but when you have a lot of patients it gets tedious and it wasn’t always the cleanest solution. It also wasn’t very effective.”

Stay Ahead of the New Workflow with Less Mixing

Breeza® flavored beverage for use with oral iodinated contrast removes much of the mixing.

Breeza flavored beverage for use with oral iodinated contrastBreeza is a sugar-free, gluten-free tropical flavored beverage designed to mask the bitter taste of oral contrast. The 16oz under-filled bottles for the easy addition of ionic oral iodinated contrast.

Sarah’s patients really appreciate the change in flavor. “Our patients are loving it. I hear a lot of ‘thank you’s’ and ‘oh my God, this is so good!’ Things you never hear from people drinking contrast but because of Breeza they’re able to drink it all. That just makes my day because I’m all about making the patients as comfortable as possible and giving them the best experience.”

As we adjust to the new way of offer patient care with limited touchpoints and interactions, Breeza flavored beverage for use with oral iodinated contrast offers a way to improve the patient experience while keeping handoffs to a minimum.

Contact your Breeza Business Development Manager at 1-800-233-5539 or [email protected] and ask about a trial evaluation for your facility.

Related Articles:

To Drink or Not to Drink: An Honest Conversation about Oral Contrast

Current Trends with Oral Contrast in Diagnostic CT

Patient Satisfaction and Oral Contrast in CAT-Scan

This post was originally published on this site.