Study of Radiologic Technologists’ Perceptions of Picture Archiving and Communication System (PACS) Competence and Educational Issues in Western Australia
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The final publication is available at Springer via http://doi.org/10.1007/s10278-014-9765-1.
Although the implementation of picture archiving and communication system (PACS) could increase productivity of radiology departments, this depends on factors such as the PACS competence of radiologic technologists (RTs). The purpose of this study was to investigate the RTs’ perceptions of PACS competence and educational issues in Western Australia (WA). A hardcopy questionnaire was distributed to WA RTs for obtaining their perceptions of PACS competence and educational issues. Descriptive (percentage of frequency, mean and standard deviation) and inferential statistics (t test and analysis of variance) were used to analyze the responses of the multiple choice and five-point scale questions from the returned questionnaires. The questionnaire response rate was 57.7 % (173 out of 300). The mean values of all PACS competence questions except questions 2e–g are in the range of 3.9–4.9, i.e., around competent to very competent. Participants indicated they received adequate PACS training (mean 3.8). Statistically significant variables influencing RTs’ perceptions of their PACS competence and educational issues including the age (p < 0.01), gender (p < 0.05), years of practice (p < 0.005–0.05), primary duty (p < 0.05), medical imaging qualification (p < 0.001), general computer skills (p < 0.001), and type of PACS education received (p < 0.001–0.05). The WA RTs indicated that they were competent in using the modality workstation, PACS and radiology information system, and received adequate training. However, future PACS education programs should be tailored to different RTs’ groups. For example, multiple training modules might be necessary to support the PACS competence development of older RTs and those with lower general computer literacy.
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