Don't overlook PET technologists

May 1, 2005

I feel obligated to respond to the article in your March 2005 issue, "All clinical sides take hard look at PET and PET/CT" by Halliday et al (page 47). The article overlooks perhaps the most important team member needed to "ensure seamless integration of PET imaging within the hospital system." If the perspective of the nuclear medicine technologist is not taken into account, there will be no success for this venture.

I feel obligated to respond to the article in your March 2005 issue, "All clinical sides take hard look at PET and PET/CT" by Halliday et al (page 47). The article overlooks perhaps the most important team member needed to "ensure seamless integration of PET imaging within the hospital system." If the perspective of the nuclear medicine technologist is not taken into account, there will be no success for this venture.

These techs require additional training, which should be rewarded by additional pay. Their experience and knowledge will produce images that the oncologist, interpreting physician, and hospital/practice administrator can all be happy about.

My hospital has recently added PET/CT to our imaging department. The integration of this modality has been nearly seamless, but only through the hard work and dedication of my technologists, nuclear and CT.

-Lawrence M. McNiesh, M.D.

Chief of Radiology,

Windber Medical Center,

Windber, PA