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Interprofessional Image Verification Workshop for Physician and Physics Residents: A Multi-Institutional Experience

      Purpose

      Verification of patient position through pretreatment setup imaging is crucial in modern radiation therapy. As treatment complexity increases and technology evolves, physicist-physician collaboration becomes imperative for safe and successful radiation delivery. Despite the importance of both, residency programs lack formal interprofessional education (IPE) activities or structured training for image verification. Here we show the impact of an interprofessional image verification workshop for residents in a multi-institutional setting.

      Methods

      The workshop included a lecture by the attending physicist and physician, and hands-on image registration practice by learners (medical physics residents, MP; and radiation oncology residents, RO). All participants filled out pre- and postactivity surveys and rated their comfort from 1 to 10 in (A) selecting what type of imaging to order for a given case and (B) independently assessing the setup quality based on imaging. A paired 1-tailed t test (α = 0.05) was used to evaluate significance; Spearman rank correlation coefficient was used to assess correlation of ratings and RO postgraduate year (PGY). Surveys had free-response questions about IPE and image verification activities in residency.

      Results

      A total of 71 residents from 7 institutions participated between 2018 and 2020. Pre- and postsurveys were completed by 50 residents (38RO, 12MP) and showed an increase in (A) from 5.5 ± 2.2 to 7.1 ± 1.6 (P < .001) and in (B) from 5.1 ± 2.3 to 6.8 ± 1.5 (P < .001), with significant increases per subgroup (AΔ, RO = 1.8 ± 1.7, P < .001; BΔ, RO = 1.9 ± 1.8, P <. 001; AΔ, MP = 1.1 ± 1.4, P = .012; BΔ, MP = 1.2 ± 1.6, P = .016). RO confidence scores moderately correlated with PGY. Survey responses indicated that image verification training is mostly unstructured, with extent of exposure varying by program and attending; most with little-to-no training. Time constraints were identified as the main barrier. IPE was noted as a useful way to incorporate different perspectives into the process.

      Conclusions

      Formal image verification training increases resident comfort with setup imaging review and provides opportunities for interprofessional collaboration in radiation oncology residency programs.
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