A Diagnostics & Imaging Week

The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP; Harrisburg) said it has fined Geisinger Medical Group (Danville, Pennsylvania) $900,000 for not performing required equipment testing and falsifying records at its Lock Haven, Pennsylvania, clinic, where evaluations and inspections revealed deficiencies in the quality of the facility's mammograms.

The deficiencies involved a quality control technician failing to perform required tests to ensure the quality of mammograms conducted at the facility. The technician, who is no longer employed by Geisinger, falsified records to indicate some of the required tests had been done.

Geisinger voluntarily reported the violations of the state's Radiation Protection Act to the DEP and the FDA when the facility became aware of problems in February 2005. The company immediately stopped conducting the tests at the Lock Haven site, and is no longer performing the medical procedure there.

As part of an agreement with the DEP, Geisinger sent letters to all patients who had mammograms performed at the Lock Haven clinic between May 18, 2003, and the time it stopped conducting the tests on Feb. 10, 2005, offering to pay for new mammograms at a facility of the patient's choice.

All other Geisinger facilities providing mammograms were inspected or reviewed by either the DEP or the American College of Radiology (Reston, Virginia) following the Lock Haven report, and those facilities were found to meet federal guidelines for administration of the tests.

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