News | March 03, 2009

Virginia Enacts Law to License Radiologist Assistants

March3, 2009 - Virginia Governor Tim Kaine has signed HB 1939 into law making Virginia the 24th state to license, regulate or recognize the radiologist assistant as a member of the radiology health care team.

This statute, which takes effect on July 1, 2009, provides for the licensure of radiologist assistants as individuals who have met the requirements of the Board of Medicine for licensure as advanced-level radiologic technologists. While under the direct supervision of a licensed doctor of medicine or osteopathy specializing in the field of radiology, RAs will be allowed to:

- Assess and evaluate the physiological and psychological responsiveness of patients undergoing radiologic procedures.
- Evaluate image quality, make initial observations and communicate observations to the supervising radiologist.
- Administer contrast media or other medications prescribed by the supervising radiologist.
- Perform or assist the supervising radiologist who is performing any other procedures consistent with the guidelines adopted by the American College of Radiology, the American Society of Radiologic Technologists and the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.

“We are excited that radiologist assistants will be licensed by the state of Virginia and able to assist radiologists with providing patient care,” said Christine J. Lung, ASRT’s vice president of government relations and public policy. “ASRT believes that RAs will play an increasingly important role as radiologist extenders in a health care environment that is always trying to improve both productivity and efficiency, and ultimately increase the quality of health care for patients. This is especially important during a time when demands on the health care system are extreme and resources are limited.” Three additional states are reviewing RA licensure bills during their 2009 legislative sessions.

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