DHMC Breast Imaging Program Designated 'Center of Excellence'

June 24, 2011
Lebanon, NH

BIC Seal

The Breast Imaging Center (BIC) at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center (DHMC) has earned the status of Breast Imaging Center of Excellence from the American College of Radiology (ACR).

The milestone recognizes that the BIC, a division of DHMC's Department of Radiology, has sought and earned accreditation in all of the ACR's voluntary programs and modules in breast-imaging, and followed the mandatory Mammography Accreditation Program. The designation also highlights the skills and experience of the center's radiologists and technologists, who provide breast imaging - mammography, ultrasound, breast magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) - and image-guided breast biopsy to women from all over northern New England. The BIC team also shares an institutional commitment to maintaining outstanding facilities, safe high-quality care, and monitoring patient outcomes.

"The center of excellence designation is important," says Steven P. Poplack, MD, co-director of the BIC and an associate professor of radiology and of obstetrics and gynecology at Dartmouth Medical School (DMS). "It recognizes the professional and technological expertise that we are able to provide our patients in all areas of breast imaging and interventional procedures."

The BIC is a key component of DHMC's Comprehensive Breast Program, which coordinates and oversees interdepartmental care of patients with breast cancer. The BIC holds full ACR accreditation in mammography, stereotactic breast biopsy, breast ultrasound, and ultrasound-guided biopsy. It also provides routine screening, diagnostic, and interventional services - following a patient with breast problems from her initial visit through her diagnosis and/or referral. In conjunction with the Familial Cancer Program at Norris Cotton Cancer Center, the BIC operates an MRI screening program for women at high risk for developing breast cancer.

In peer review for ACR, board-certified physicians and medical physicists with expertise in the field cited DHMC for high-practice standards in image quality, personnel qualifications, facility equipment, quality-control procedures, and quality-assurance programs.

"A distinction of the Breast Imaging Center of DHMC is that our physicians (radiologists) and technologists specialize in breast imaging and procedures," Poplack notes. "Because of this subspecialty expertise, and because of our integration with the Comprehensive Breast Care Program, we are able to deliver the best and most compassionate care possible."

DHMC established its BIC in 1986, to focus staff and resources on this critical area of health care for women. Today, the center includes seven radiologists who specialize in breast imaging, 13 radiographers, an ultrasonographer dedicated to breast imaging, and two breast-care coordinators.

"The achievement of the Breast Imaging Center of Excellence (BICOE) accreditation represents a collective body of work from our highly-skilled group of professionals," says Terri Lorandeau, lead technologist at the BIC. "I am very proud to acknowledge our staff and the work they do. The dedication, expertise, and years of experience of our team are truly a benefit to our patients. The DHMC Breast Imaging Center has a long-standing commitment to providing the best care at the right time every time."

Based in Reston, Virginia, the ACR network serves more than 32,000 diagnostic/interventional radiologists, radiation oncologists, nuclear-medicine physicians, and medical physicists, with a focus on the practice of medical imaging and radiation oncology as well as the delivery of comprehensive health-care services.

About Dartmouth-Hitchcock: Dartmouth-Hitchcock is a national leader in evidence-based and patient-centered health care. The system includes hundreds of physicians, specialists, and other providers who work together at different locations to meet the health care needs of patients in northern New England. In addition to primary care services at local community practices, Dartmouth-Hitchcock patients have access to specialists in almost every area of medicine, as well as world-class research at Dartmouth Medical School and centers such as The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice (TDI).

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