COVID-19 pandemic and the effect of increased utilisation of mobile X-ray examinations on radiation dose to radiographers

Miss Phoebe Yeung1, Mr Mohamed Badawy1, Ms Jo-Anne Pinson1, Mr Michael Lawson1, Mr Christopher Leong1

1Monash Health, Clayton, Australia

This study aims to assess the utilisation of mobile X-ray units, mobile imaging of non-routine body parts, and radiographer to patient distance for impact upon radiographers’ radiation dose during the pandemic.

A retrospective analysis of general radiology departments across two metropolitan hospitals was performed. Personal radiation monitor exposure reports between January 2019 and December 2020 were analysed. The Radiology Information System (RIS), linked to Microsoft Power BI was accessed for mobile X-ray information. Statistical analysis was conducted using a Mann-Whitney U test when comparing each quarter, in 2019 to 2020. Categorical data was compared using a Chi-squared test.

The use of mobile X-rays during the pandemic increased approximately 2.7-fold, with the peak usage observed in September 2020. While reported doses marginally increased during Q2, Q3 and Q4 of 2020 (in comparison to 2019 data), this was not statistically significant (Q2: p = 0.22; Q3: p = 0.31; Q4 p = 0.32). In Q1, doses marginally decreased, and were not statistically significant (p = 0.22). Mobile imaging rate per month of non-routine body parts increased from approximately 1.4% to 8.9%.

During the pandemic, infection control measures took precedence. The increased utilisation of mobile X-rays and radiographer to patient distance did not place radiographers at an increased risk of radiation-induced side effects.


Bio to come.

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