October 28, 2011

IHS Breast Cancer Awareness on CW 6 News

Imaging Healthcare Specialists’s Dr. Tena was featured on San Diego CW 6 News this month to promote Breast Cancer Awareness. Watch the video below.

October 27, 2011

IHS Low Dose CT explained in La Jolla Village News

Our own Dr. Johnson was featured in the October 27th edition of the La Jolla Villiage News. The article, written by Johnny McDonald, is shown here:

La Jolla specialists have established a CT-imaging program to lower the amount of radiation dosage needed for patients.

“The dramatic reduction of radiation dosage is based a great deal on the patient’s size, weight and age,” said Dr. John O. Johnson, a diagnostic radiologist at Imaging Healthcare Center. “We’re able to adjust the perimeters that control CT (X-ray computed tomography) exam dosage carefully and methodically.”

The center, located in the Regents Medical Plaza at 4150 Regents Park Row, Suite 195, is one of 11 imaging clinics in San Diego County. “We’re much more concerned about the exposure to radiation in youngsters and young adults,” Johnson said. “The reason for that is they are more radio sensitive. Their body cells are more quickly divided and they have a much longer life span.”

He said the exposure has been reduced by as much as 90 percent in select patients.

Statistics indicate the average American’s dose of radiation is six times greater than it was 10 years ago, predominantly due to the increased use in radiography as a diagnostic tool. Johnson said approximately 70 million CT scans are performed each year in the United States — about one in fiveadults. “With the rise in radiation exposure there is a theoretical increased risk of radiation-induced cancers,” he said.

Johnson received his diagnostic radiology residency training at UC, San Diego, where he served as chief resident in radiology. Since joining Radiology Medical Group in 1990, he has held several positions of leadership within the group. He currently sits on several committees within Scripps Health that deal with the selection and implementation of advanced medical imaging technology within the system.

Imaging examinations include MRIs, digital mammograms, lung cancer screening, angiography and osteoporosis evaluations. “CT is revolutionary in that we can diagnose conditions earlier and avoid more invasive, complicated procedures,” he said. “CT scans are lifesaving. Smoking, heavy drinking and environmental exposures are all cancer danger signs.”

We’re a leader in low dosage images and that’s the message we want to give the community,” he said.
Studies show that in the last 100 years, diagnostic radiology, nuclear medicine and radiation therapy have evolved from the original crude practices to advanced techniques that form an essential tool for all branches and specialties of medicine.

October 14, 2011

Commitment to Low-Dose CT Scans Help Ensure Patient Safety

Computed Tomography (CT) scanning, and related medical technologies, are towering milestones that have revolutionized the medical profession. Approximately 70 million CT scans are performed each year in the United States. This means that about one in five adults receive a CT scan annually. The scans, which utilize X-rays, result in cross-sectional images of the body which are successfully used to evaluate conditions of the sinus, chest, abdomen, pelvis, central nervous system, and musculoskeletal system. They have eliminated millions of exploratory surgeries and have allowed physicians to make critical diagnoses. CT imaging has become an indispensible tool in the practice of medicine.

The radiologists and technologists at Imaging Healthcare Specialists have modified existing CT exam protocols to dramatically reduce radiation dose based on a patient’s size, weight and age,” said John O. Johnson, M.D., Chief of CT Imaging at Imaging Healthcare Specialists. “Our low dose initiatives have reduced radiation exposure by as much as 90% in select patients. We are proud to be a leader in lowering radiation dose for our patients while maintaining imaging quality for our referring physicians.”

The increased use of CT scans nationwide has resulted in an unavoidable increase in cumulative radiation exposure to patients.  With the rise in radiation exposure, there is a theoretical increased risk of radiation-induced cancers.  “The natural lifetime cancer risk is 40%,” said Dr. Johnson. “Imaging Healthcare Specialists’ commitment to optimizing our CT protocols ensures that our patients receive the least amount of radiation exposure without compromising image quality, thereby reducing cancer risk.”

Imaging Healthcare Specialists has 11 offices throughout San Diego and south Riverside County, including Temecula, Oceanside, Encinitas, Poway, La Jolla, Chula Vista and San Diego.

October 13, 2011

New Research Shows PET Imaging Effective in Predicting Lung Cancer Outcomes

In a recent study out of the Seidman Cancer Center at University Hospitals (UH) Case Medical Center, it was found that Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scans helped a great deal in predicting which inoperable lung cancer tumors needed additional treatments. Not only do PET scans help in identifying lung cancer “hot spots”, but have now been shown to help doctors choose more effective methods for treating such cancer.

You can read more about this study, you can click here.

August 25, 2011

IHS 8th Annual Charity Golf Tournament

Imaging Healthcare Specialists is pleased to announce its 8th Annual Charity Golf Tournament Benefitting Fresh Start Surgical Gifts! The tournament will take place on Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 12:30 pm at the Coronado Municipal Golf Course.

Fresh Start Surgical Gifts provides reconstructive plastic surgery and related services to children and young adults with physical deformities. All services, are provided free of cost to these families—because of donors like you!

We are inviting you to make an impact in these children’s lives forever, by sponsoring our event in 2011. Your generous donation will help these children’s lives develop in ways they never thought would be available to them. By donating towards this cause you will impact their futures; as they grow, create families and participate in the community, your donation will never be forgotten.

The goal of giving children a life free of physical deformities would not be possible without the generous donations of individuals and corporations like you. Your donation/sponsorship will ensure that Fresh Start will forever change the life of a disadvantaged child or young adult.

Thanks to the generosity of our sponsors and golfers in previous years we have been able to donate a significant amount to this truly remarkable organization. From our tournament in 2010 we were able to donate over $45,000 to Fresh Start. This year, we encourage and challenge you to join us on September 8th in an effort to surpass this amount to fund more services which Fresh Start will provide to children in need.

Please take a moment and consider changing a child’s life forever.

Should you choose to make a difference, please complete the sponsorship form and email it to Heidi Rovello at hrovello@imaginghealthcare.com or fax it to 619-694-1137. We look forward to seeing you on September 8th.

Please contact Heidi Rovello at (858) 658-6577 with any questions.


Thomas D. Cleary
President and Chief Operating Officer, IHS

A special thanks to our platinum sponsors below:

August 15, 2011

IHS Listed as one of the Top 25 Connected Healthcare Facilities in the Nation

In the August 2011 edition of Health Imaging & IT, IHS was listed as one of the Top 25 Connected Healthcare Facilities. Here is what they wrote in the article:

Health Imaging & IT’s Top Connected class of 2011 is an illustrious group. Several previous winners have re-appeared and demonstrated their continued commitment to imaging connectivity across the enterprise, reporting ongoing gains in various metrics, such as turn-around time and operating costs. One common theme across our repeat winners? They are leveraging data to inform strategic decisions and monitor results.

It’s a business model to be replicated.

Reading between the lines, there are hints of positive developments. Yes, hospitals, health systems and radiology practices are squeezing every ounce of productivity and innovation from their investments in imaging modalities, informatics systems and staff. Compared with last year, volume is steadier, with most sites showing slight gains.

We considered Health Information Management Systems Society (HIMSS) EMR adoption stages, according to the HIMSS Analytics EMR Adoption Model. Our winners are conglomerated at the top of the scale, with most reporting at stage 6 or 7. That means they fall in the top 4.5 percent of U.S. facilities.   

Read on for short profiles of recent imaging connectivity projects at this year’s Top Connected organizations.

Imaging Healthcare Specialists:
The San Diego imaging center leverages a vendor-neutral, cloud-based, electronic medical information exchange service to make images and reports available via the EMR or email to hospitals, physicians and patients, which has eliminated film and paper and makes results immediately available to referring physicians. Results are frequently available to physicians before patients leave the imaging center.

May 31, 2011

Imaging Healthcare Specialists Introduces New Image Wisely™ Initiative


Imaging Healthcare Specialists (IHS) is proud to announce the initiation and unwavering commitment to Image Wisely™–a program encouraging practitioners to avoid unnecessary ionizing radiation procedures and to use the lowest optimal radiation dose for necessary studies. Image Wisely™, created by the ACR Joint Task Force on Adult Radiation Protection, offers resources and information to address concerns about the surge of public exposure to ionizing radiation from medical imaging.

It is the goal of Imaging Healthcare Specialists to be a leader in this initiative by implementing the concepts of Image Wisely™ within everyday practice and to communicate supporting educational information to referring professionals and their patients. This commitment ensures Imaging Healthcare Specialists holds accreditation by the American College of Radiology, employees are credentialed by the governing accreditation boards and licensed by the State of California, and radiologists are board certified by the American Board of Radiology. The program also requires all facilities have completed an external review process to meet nationally accepted standards of care and medical imaging equipment is inspected by a medical physicist.

“It is our commitment to our patients’ safety, health, and welfare that makes this program such a perfect fit for us,” said Dr. John O. Johnson, Chief of CT Imaging. “To convey the principles of the Image Wisely™ program, Imaging Healthcare Specialists has optimized imaging protocols to ensure it is using the least amount of radiation necessary to acquire a diagnostic quality image for each examination,” concluded Johnson.

In addition, Imaging Healthcare Specialists has aggressively adopted the practice of ALARA (As Low As Reasonably Achievable) to limit the use of ionizing radiation. In support of this, Imaging Healthcare Specialists radiologists and staff have implemented a number of dose reduction protocols specific to CT imaging and routinely shield breast and thyroid tissue. This provides patients with a safe, high quality imaging examination tailored by clinical indication.

Imaging Healthcare Specialists is a full service outpatient medical imaging center company offering specialized imaging services throughout San Diego County and southern Riverside County. For decades, the principals of Imaging Healthcare Specialists have been committed to offering the best medical imaging technology, highly specialized expertise, and exceptional customer service to physicians and patients in southern California. For more information, please visit www.imaginghealthcare.com or call (858) 658-6500.

March 7, 2011

GE Discovery ST Installed at Imaging Healthcare Specialists

New System Optimized for Oncology Imaging and a Faster Way to “See and Treat”

Imaging Healthcare Specialists (IHS) is proud to announce the opening of a new GE Discovery ST PET/CT system at their Laurel imaging facility in Hillcrest.  With the opening of this new scanner, IHS now offers state-of-art PET/CT imaging at two locations, in Hillcrest and in Encinitas.  This system integrates a Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scanner with a multi-slice Computed Tomography (CT) scanner and is capable of 2D and 3D imaging with a larger bore for all patient studies or sizes.  This Discovery ST system provides physicians with more sensitivity, speed, resolution, and diagnostic confidence when detecting cancer and other medial conditions.

The “ST” in Discovery ST stands for “See and Treat,” which is what this new system allows physicians to do. Built from the ground up with Six Sigma methodology, the Discovery ST assists physicians in seeing the disease and planning radiation therapy treatment. The new Discovery ST system will shorten scan times and less time on the table means faster results and greater patient comfort.  With the device, physicians at Imaging Healthcare Specialists are able to encounter better image quality and greater confidence in image interpretation. It allows physicians to not only ‘see’ the disease, but to begin to ‘treat’ it.”

GE’s Discovery ST combines the fastest and most sophisticated computed tomography (CT) technology with the most advanced Positron Emission Tomography (PET) technology – all in a single exam. Since most types of cancer have greater metabolic activity than normal tissue, the PET portion of the exam detects those areas of high metabolic activity in cancer tissue.  The PET images are then fused with the CT images which provides for precise anatomic localization of the increased metabolic activity.

Mark Schechter, MD, lead PET/CT physician for Imaging Healthcare Specialists states that “PET/CT imaging has fundamentally changed how medical and surgical oncologists determine the best form of treatment in children and adults.  PET/CT as the unique capability to detect abnormal tumor metabolic activity in tissue long before any anatomic change can be detected in that tissue by conventional CT or MRI Imaging.  Because of that unique ability, PET/CT is the most accurate and sensitive method of detecting distant metastatic disease and in monitoring response to therapy.”

Integrating the Discovery ST into Imaging Healthcare Specialists’ practice is another example of the company’s commitment to innovation and technology for early disease detection supporting physicians in improved diagnosis and treatment.  With its larger bore size (70cm) and shorter tunnel length (100cm), physicians have more flexibility in positioning larger patients and for better radiation therapy planning, and helps claustrophobic patients.

Imaging Healthcare Specialists is a full service outpatient medical imaging center company offering specialized imaging services throughout San Diego County and southern Riverside County. For decades, the principals of Imaging Healthcare Specialists have been committed to offering the best medical imaging technology, highly specialized radiologist expertise and exceptional customer service to physicians and patients in southern California.  For more information about Imaging Healthcare Specialists please visit www.imaginghealthcare.com or call (858)658-6500.

February 21, 2011

New PET/CT Scanner at First Avenue

Imaging Healthcare Specialists is pleased to announce the opening of a new state-of-art PET/CT scanner at our San Diego facility, located at 2466 First Avenue in Hillcrest. We will be taking patients at the new scanner beginning February 21, 2011.  With the opening of this new scanner, IHS now has two state-of-the-art PET/CT scanners, and will continue to also offer PET/CT services at our other location in Encinitas at 1200 Garden View Rd, Encinitas, CA 92024.

Our new GE Discovery ST PET/CT scanner offers patients technology that combines the strength of two well-established imaging modalities into one single imaging device.  By imaging with the two modalities in a single scan, disease can be both identified and localized, potentially resulting in an earlier diagnosis and more accurate staging.

Expert PET/CT professional interpretations are provided by Radiology Medial Group physicians Mark Schechter MD, David Buckley MD, John Johnson MD, Erick Lizerbram MD and Greg Anderson MD.

We look forward to serving you at our new location.

January 21, 2011

7th Annual Charity Golf Tournament: Recap

Despite the rainy forecast, the tournament was filled with lots of sun and everyone was in great spirits. The tournament was a big success raising over $40,000 for Fresh Start, a very deserving organization.

Thank you to everyone who participated and we look forward to seeing everyone at the 8th annual.

Above are a few photos of the event, but you can view all of the photos and place orders by clicking here.