WASHINGTON, March 13 /PRNewswire/ -- Congresswoman Heather Wilson, R-N.M.,
Tuesday reintroduced the Consumer Assurance of Radiologic Excellence (CARE)
bill, H.R. 1214, designed to ensure that the health professionals who perform
radiologic procedures are properly qualified.
"The CARE bill is important patient care legislation. Each year, more
than 300 million medical imaging examinations and radiation therapy treatments
are performed in the United States. Unfortunately, many of these procedures
are performed by personnel who are not adequately trained or credentialed,"
Rep. Wilson said. "Only 36 states license medical imaging personnel today,
and those laws vary widely in effectiveness. In the other 14 states and the
District of Columbia, individuals are allowed to perform medical imaging and
radiation therapy procedures following only a few weeks of training. This
places patients in jeopardy."
Recent Congressional attention to health care issues such as the quality
of care, patient safety and Medicare reform, demonstrates the importance of
the CARE bill, said Christine Lung, government relations director for the
American Society of Radiologic Technologists, a leading supporter of the bill.
The ASRT has more than 100,000 members nationwide. "This legislation would
ensure high quality radiologic patient care, improve the safety of medical
imaging and radiation therapy procedures and reduce health care costs," said
The CARE bill will direct the Department of Health and Human Services to
establish educational and credentialing standards for personnel who plan and
deliver radiation therapy and perform diagnostic imaging procedures except
medical ultrasound. Under the proposed legislation, states would be required
to meet the federal minimum standards or risk losing federal reimbursement for
Rep. Wilson, who introduced the bill in 2001 as H.R. 1011, had the
bipartisan support of 54 sponsors before the close of the 107th Congress.
Prior to Rep. Wilson, Rep. Rick Lazio, R-N.Y, introduced the CARE bill in the
106th session of Congress.
The CARE bill is backed by the Alliance for Quality Medical Imaging and
Radiation Therapy, a coalition of radiologic science organizations that
represents more than 250,000 health care professionals.
SOURCE American Society of Radiologic Technologists