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1. Rationale

1.1 This guidance and advice document overviews safety issues in Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and, while not claiming to be all-inclusive, it provides direction to radiographic staff on where appropriate information can be found. All members of the workforce who are working, or intending to work, in MRI are recommended to read the literature listed in this document to gain a more in depth appreciation of the issues involved.

1.2    Purpose

The purpose of this document is to:

  • increase awareness and reiterate safety issues which are uniquely associated with MRI
  • identify the professional responsibilities in ensuring safe practice in MRI
  • offer practical advice for the development of  an MR safety framework
  • inform departments regarding the European Union Physical Agents Directive (EUPAD)1  concerning worker protection in electromagnetic fields (EMFs).

1.3    In this document considerations are given to areas relating to hazards, safety, good practice and professional responsibilities.  It is not comprehensive as other documents are available, but is designed to be a practical reference guide and pointer in order for radiographic staff to be able to find and access information in busy MR units.

1.4   The Society and College of Radiographers (SCoR) and the British Association of Magnetic Resonance Radiographers (BAMRR) recommend that all departments have an up to date copy of the following Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) publication: Safety Guidelines for Magnetic Resonance Equipment in Clinical Use.2

1.5    This guidance updates and replaces the previous guidance document produced by SCoR and BAMRR 2013.3 SCoR is grateful to members of the SCoR Magnetic Resonance Advisory Group (MRAG) and the BAMRR policy board who contributed to the writing of this document.

Note: The term ‘MR operator’ in this document relates to the scanning radiographer (registered practitioner) as SCoR defines the scope of practice of assistant practitioners in MRI as being related to assisting the registered healthcare professional and to aspects of patient care. 4

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