Parklane Radiology, based at Netcare Park Lane Hospital in Johannesburg, has been awarded a three-year term of accreditation for its mammography imaging service following a recent review by the American College of Radiology (ACR). It is the only facility in South Africa to have its service recognised in this way.
“The ACR golden seal of accreditation represents international recognition of the mammography services offered by Parklane Radiology in terms of high image quality and patient safety,” affirms diagnostic radiologist Dr Peter Schoub, who established a comprehensive women’s imaging service at Netcare Park Lane Hospital in 2012 in partnership with Dr Harry Said. Dr Pam Smilg joined the practice in 2018.
“The ACR Committee on Accreditation awards this recognition only to those facilities meeting ACR practice parameters and technical standards after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field,” explains Dr Schoub.
“The doctors and staff members at the women’s imaging department at Parklane Radiology have worked hard to ensure that we consistently provide outstanding levels of service to our patients in order to achieve this accreditation from ACR. We are delighted that our mammography service has been acknowledged in this way, and is the first in the country to be accredited by the ACR.”
Dr Schoub explains that mammography is a specific type of imaging test that uses a low-dose x-ray system to examine the breasts. A mammography examination, called a mammogram, is used to aid in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women. The radiology department at Netcare Park Lane Hospital offers both 2D and 3D mammography imaging.
Sandile Mbele, director of Netcare’s hospital division’s Gauteng South West region, points out that this latest accreditation for the department’s 2D and 3D mammography imaging service follows the earlier ACR accreditation for its breast MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) service, awarded for three years in September 2017.
“The highest quality imaging is critical in the early detection of breast diseases, when it is the most responsive to treatment. To address this need, Dr Schoub and his colleagues have developed a comprehensive, world-class women’s imaging department at Netcare Park Lane Hospital,” observes Mbele.
Parklane Radiology recommends that women over the age of 40 should have an annual mammogram regardless of family history or supposed risk factors, according to Dr Schoub. This is because some forms of breast cancer are highly aggressive, meaning that they spread rapidly, and it is imperative that they are detected and treated as early as possible.
He adds that the ACR accreditation team assesses such aspects as image quality, personnel qualifications, facility equipment and technologies, quality control procedures and quality assurance programmes. The team’s findings are reported to the ACR Committee on Accreditation, and the imaging practice is thereafter provided with a comprehensive report detailing its strengths, as well as areas where improvement is required.
“Not only does ACR accreditation require the upholding of standards going forward, but the reports can be used for the ongoing improvement and development of the practice. It is our goal to achieve accreditation for all the modalities used in breast imaging,” Dr Schoub adds.
Working closely with the multidisciplinary team under the renowned Professor Carol-Ann Benn at the Breast Care Centre of Excellence situated at Netcare Milpark Hospital, the women’s imaging department at Netcare Park Lane Hospital offers a comprehensive breast imaging service including 2D mammography, advanced 3D tomosynthesis mammography, ultrasound, breast biopsy, MRI, MRI-guided biopsy, and other investigations aimed at identifying breast and gynaecological conditions.
Dr Schoub started his breast imaging career with Dr Harry Said, a leading mammography expert in 2010. The original practice was at a clinic in Orange Grove and the practice moved to Netcare Park Lane Hospital in 2012.
The ACR, which was founded in 1924 and is based in the United States, is a professional medical society dedicated to serving patients and societies, by empowering radiology professionals to advance the practice, science and professions of radiological care.
The society serves more than 37 000 diagnostic and interventional radiologists, radiation oncologists, nuclear medicine physicians, and medical physicists globally, with programmes focusing on the practice of medical imaging and radiation oncology and the delivery of comprehensive healthcare services.
“The two ACR accreditations achieved by Parklane Radiology, both firsts in South Africa, represent a tremendous achievement, and deserve every recognition. For patients the accreditations provide the assurance that the highest standards of mammography and MRI imaging and services are available at the facility,” concludes Dr Schoub.
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