Advance Magazine Publishes Article on MRI Suite Design Codes by One of RAD-Planning's Own Architect for Radiology Facilities

RADIOLOGY-Planning (RAD-Planning) Sr. Vice President, Tobias Gilk, authored an article on MRI suite design codes and standards newly referenced by the Joint Commission, the nation's largest hospital accreditation body. The article appears in the July / August issue of Advance for Imaging & Radiation Oncology.

Kansas City, MO, August 04, 2011 --( Radiology trade publication, Advance for Imaging & Radiation Oncology, published an article by RADIOLOGY-Planning (RAD-Planning) Senior Vice President, Tobias Gilk, on MRI Suite Design Codes and new design requirements under the new building code referenced by many US states and the Joint Commission, the nation's largest accreditation body for hospitals.

The article from the July / August issue of the magazine (available from the Advance website: highlights how the popular perception that MRI is the 'safe' option for imaging may have helped suppress the awareness of alarming growth in reported accidents (reports of MRI accidents to the FDA have grown nearly five-fold in five years, as revealed through the FDA's online adverse event database, Many MRI safety elements can be tied directly to the design of the MRI suite.

According to the article, beginning in 2011 the Joint Commission began referencing the 2010 edition of the Guidelines for Design and Construction of Health Care Facilities as the organization's standard for hospital buildings. The 2010 edition of the Guidelines publication includes, for the first time, extensive physical environment safety protections addressing the unique safety aspects of MRI.

Among the changes brought about by the new standard are:

- Incorporation by reference of the American College of Radiology's 4-Zone screening and access control model.
- Line-of-sight situational awareness between the MRI operator, the patient inside the scanner, and the entrance to the MRI scanner room.
- Suite design to restrict access to magnetic fields equal or stronger than 5 gauss.
- Requirement for the use of ferromagnetic (only) detection systems.

These changes and others are identified in the article.

"This topic, of the new MRI safety design codes, has generated a lot of interest, recently," said Tobias Gilk. "The design and facilities communities have been extremely interested, as have code and accreditation officials, ever since this change went into effect at the beginning of the year. We're thrilled to see the radiology community embracing these new safety standards, too."

The article on MRI suite safety design criteria is actually the second in a series of three articles by RAD-Planning's radiology architects appearing in the Advance publication. RAD-Planning President, Robert Junk, AIA, penned an article on imaging suite throughput for the May / June issue of the magazine (, and Senior Project Manager, Scott Branton, AIA, is finalizing an article on sustainable design principles for imaging suite design and construction, scheduled to be published before the end of the year.

About RAD-Planning: RAD-Planning is the premier imaging planning and design consulting firm in the US. With expert architects, designers and planners for radiology facilities for clinical and research settings, the firm serves governmental, non-profit, and corporate clients.

Tobias Gilk