A 15 mammography continuing education credit course designed to meet your mammography CE requirements all at once for ARRT®*, MQSA, and all 50 states’ registries.
How many credits do I need?
The ARRT® does not require any CE credits specific to Mammography, even if you have a mammography license. However, the FDA and some state agencies do. The FDA requires the radiologic technologist to have completed or taught a minimum of 15 CEUs (continuing education units also called credits) in mammography in the 36 months immediately preceding the annual MQSA inspection. For example, if the facility is undergoing MQSA inspection in October 2016, the inspector will count the credits earned in the 36-month period between November 2013 and October 2016. Some inspectors calculate credits in the 36 months from the last day of the quarter preceding the annual MQSA inspection. In fact, credits can be calculated from any date between the two dates listed above. The facility supervisor knows the date of the next scheduled MQSA inspection and the date method used to calculate credits.
For more questions, mammographers should contact the Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Mammography Quality Standards Act (MQSA) Helpline at 1-800-838-7715 or visit http://www.fda.gov/radiation-emittingproducts/mammographyqualitystandardsactandprogram/default.htm for federal requirements.
If technologists are licensed by their state, they should check with their licensing agency for specific state requirements.
In addition to mammography CE credits, the ARRT®* (American Registry of Radiologic Technologists) requires that you attend 24 hours of general continuing education every two years. This education time is quantified as credits (or sometimes called units) where one credit equals one hour of education. Most state agencies follow this example as well. Your mammography CE credits count towards this goal, so you can use the 15 mammography credits and only need another 9 to complete 24 credits.
I received applications training at work. Does this count?
Yes, for FDA and MQSA requirements those credits will work. But perhaps not for some states and ARRT®. According to the ARRT® guidelines, up to 8 CE Credits per piennium of applications training completed at work as long as they were issued by an approved provider. If you received more than 8 credits for this type of training you can probably only claim 8 and you should contact the ARRT® if you plan to try and claim more.
What do I need in order to work as a mammography technologist in the USA?
Regulations regarding mammography technologists from the FDA first became effective on April 28, 1999. In order to perform mammography exams the technologist must meet the following standards.
1. Licensure or board certification is required. This means either full / general state license to perform radiographic procedures or Certification from either The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists® (ARRT®) or The American Registry of Clinical Radiography Technologists (ARCRT)
2. Initial training in mammography is required. A minimum of 40 contact hours of initial mammography training are required in order to qualify. This training should include breast anatomy and physiology as well as breast positioning and compression. It should also include techniques for quality control/quality assurance. Special techniques for imaging patients with breast implants should be part of the initial training. The radiologic technologist must perform 25 supervised mammograms. The time spent on the 25 supervised examinations can count toward the 40-hour total. However, as guidance, it is suggested that the time spent on supervised examinations should be limited to a maximum of 12.5 hours out of the required total of 40 hours. If a radiologic technologist qualified for certification before April 28, 1999 (when interim regulations were in effect) this does not apply.
3. If this is a Mammographic Modality that is new to the radiologic technologist, the technologist is required to undergo a minimum of 8 hours of training in each modality of mammography in which he or she has no previous training (for e.g., digital mammography, xeromammography, screen-film mammography).
4.Continuing Experience is required. The radiologic technologist should have performed at least 200 mammograms in the 24 months preceding the date of the facility’s annual MQSA inspection. This can also be calculated as 24 months from the last day of the calendar quarter preceding the annual MQSA inspection. It can also be calculated from any date between the two dates listed above. This requirement came into effect on the later of April 28, 1999 or the radiologic technologist’s actual start date on which they initially qualified for independent work. A radiologic technologist will not be considered non-compliant with the continuing experience requirement until July 1, 2001, or a minimum of 24 months after the initial start date, whichever is later.
5. Continuing Education is required by the FDA in order to continue to perform mammography exams. See the above reference about specifically what CE is required.
In summary, to perform mammography exams, a radiologic technologist must meet both MQSA and state licensing requirements. Each state has its own initial and continuing education requirements. The technologist should check with the specific state licensing agency to confirm the courses and CE credits that are accepted by them. The technologist should become board certified by the American Registry of Clinical Radiography Technologists or the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists. The RT should also complete 40 hours of initial mammography training as detailed above. The technologist must also complete 25 supervised mammography examinations under an individual qualified by MQSA. Finally, the technologist should obtain 8 hours of modality-specific initial training for each mammographic modality they use (screen-film, full-field digital, digital breast tomosynthesis, or xeromammography). Every three years, the technologist is required to earn 15 credits in mammography. These can be in either digital mammography or analog mammography. As noted above, before performing digital examinations, the technologist must undergo 8 initial hours of digital mammography modality-specific training.
How do I report my Mammography CE credits?
If you are ARRT® certified, you must submit an application for renewal of registration to the ARRT® near the end of your biennium, but not after. CE credits must be listed on the CE Report form that is included with the application and can only be reported at the end of the biennium. Every state agency has structured their system around this.
Who keeps a record of my credits?
You are in charge of keeping your own records. Neither the ARRT® nor the FDA maintain records of CE credits. But proof of continuing education may be required upon an MQSA inspection.
At the time of MQSA inspection, the radiologic technologist should have available their state license, board certification, documents confirming initial training, as well as certifications received in the 36 months preceding the inspection. In addition, the RT will need to produce documentation for continuing education credits and evidence of completion of 200 mammograms in the preceding 36 months.
Most state agencies also do not maintain these records for the purpose of retrieval. It’s up to you to keep a record of the courses you took. If you purchase courses here at XRayCeRT.com, your records are kept online and you can retrieve your certificate of completion any time. No. You must send in your credits yourself to the ARRT® and / or the state agency you are registred with according to their requirements. We do report to Florida for Florida licensed technologists monthly, but you still must report it yourself also.
What kind of credits do I need? What’s the difference between Category A and A+?
For mammography techs, Category A credits in a subject pertaining to mammography or breast cancer, or a modality you use to perform mammography are what you need. A+ credits are accepted if you have them, but not necessary. Category A credits are also accepted by all state agencies for those disciplines and limited license techs also. Unless you are a Registered Radiology Assistant (RRA), or a similar specialty where your registry told you that you specifically need A+ credits, you do not need A+ credits. We don’t offer A+ at this time. Credits that are approved by a recognized accrediting body are accepted. All courses on our site are approved by the ASRT and are accepted by all registries and for MQSA compliance.
When is my CE due?
For ARRT®, biennium dates are assigned based on a technologist’s birth month. It is due in on the last day of the month BEFORE the month of your birthday. In other words if your birthday is in April, you need to finish your CE Credits on or before March 31st. The ARRT® does not allow you to change the month or day that the biennium begins or ends. However, requests to change the year the biennium begins or ends can be made. You would need to write to the ARRT® for that. The requirements of state agencies may differ. Timing is important for earning and reporting CE. The credits must be earned within, not before or after, your assigned biennium. These dates appear on your crediential card. The credits must be reported no earlier than two months prior to your birth month, but must be completed and reported by the last day of your birth month.
I just completed initial training and certification in mammography. Does that count for credit?
Yes. Passing the ARRT® mammography certification exam earns the radiologic technologist 24 category A CE credits. These credits are entered onto the technologist’s CE record 60 days before the end of the specified two year period. These credits count towards the MQSA requirement of 15 mammography CEUs in the 36-month timeframe followed by the facility. The date of the upcoming inspection and the dates of the biennium can be confirmed from the facility supervisor.
Does the ARRT® audit my CE reporting?
Occasionally, the ARRT® may audit your CE reporting. The ARRT® selects records to audit through two means: (1) If there are any inconsistencies on the CE report form that is submitted and CE compliance cannot be determined, then the record will be flagged for audit; (2) They have a computer program that randomly selects CE reports for audit. The audit process, which helps ensure that all R.T.s are in compliance with the requirements, should be painless. R.T.s are required to have copies of all their certificates of participation before they fill out the report form. For the audit, just send copies of the original certificates to ARRT®. There is a code on your certificate of completion that can be used by agencies to verify the authenticity of your credits acquired here. If the ARRT® or any state agency or employer needs to verify your credits obtained at this site, have them contact us.
Do I need to complete additional credits for each area in which I am certified?
The Continuing Education requirement is not dependent on the number of ARRT® certificates held. However, R.T.s should select CE topics related to their area of practice and that will address their needs. Most state agencies follow the example of the ARRT®.
Do I have to complete a certain amount of lecture credits, a certain number in-house credits, and a certain number of online credits?
Currently there is no restriction on the type of CE credits an R.T.® needs to earn as long as they are approved as Category A or A+.
I completed more than the required number of CE credits in the past biennium. Do they carry over?
No. The ARRT® does not carry over credits. State agencies follow this example. When an R.T.’s ARRT® Renewal of Registration has been processed, CE transfers cease to be accepted by ARRT®.
Should CE be specific to job performance?
The CE requirements were developed with the philosophy that, as professionals, R.T.s are in the best position to determine what type of CE will most benefit them. All technologists should select CE topics that are related to their area of practice and that will address the needs of the patient and of the Registered Technologists.
Do you keep a copy of my previous biennium reports?
All of the courses you have completed here at CE4RT.com are on record and accessible by you. We are considering a mechanism for you to record CE credits obtained elsewhere, but that is under consideration for future development.
Why do directed readings require a post test, but lectures do not?
The exam requirements for courses on this site (number of questions etc.) are designed to meet the minimum requirements of ARRT®. The post test provides documentation of participation in the directed reading, in addition to an assessment of learning. Documentation of participation in a lecture is provided by attendance records.
Where can I find out complete details?
For more information, go to the source at ARRT® CE Reporting requirements.