Radiating Hope: Radiology Department Blog


Reading Room Assistants Play a Pivotal Role in Radiology

Reading Room Assistants Play a Pivotal Role in Radiology

Cincinnati Children’s Radiology Department is truly second to none. We have some of the best radiologists in the world working here and the most current and advanced technology available. In addition, we also have Reading Room Assistants (RRA) and, believe it or not, we are one of the only hospitals to have them.

Thanks to RRAs, our doctors are able to focus entirely on the exam in front of them. When your doctor wants to be called with your child’s results, the radiologist reads the exam and dictates a report. When they finalize the report, it gets sent to a computer worklist. RRAs call your doctor’s office and read the radiologists report to them. They connect doctors who need to discuss a child’s history or deal with something that needs to be taken care of immediately.

Since RRAs do hundreds of exams each day, the phone rings quite a bit. The RRAs answer the phones and direct the callers to their intended recipients. Imagine if you were watching your favorite television show and it’s at a really important part, but your phone keeps ringing. Add to that, imagine that most of the calls are actually for your roommate or they want to talk to you about a show you watched last week. If you had an RRA, he or she would answer the phone for you and get the caller to your roommate or take a message so you could just focus on your show. We sound a little more impressive now, right?

Related Article: What is a Reading Room Assistant?

RRAs do more than just answer phones and make phone calls though. They also upload imaging into our system, enter and process orders from different departments in the hospital, and work very closely with the x-ray techs. They schedule x-rays for our in-patients, and check in patients from the emergency room and urgent care. They also take care of checking in those with scheduled appointments and patients whose doctors have prescribed an x-ray. In addition, they register patients during the evening to make sure you and your family have access to services until late at night.

The best part of being a Radiology Reading Room Assistant is the fact that it’s our job to help doctors, patients, and parents alike every day. I have been told by many doctors that we spoil them, and they are very thankful for our help. I have been a RRA for almost 8 years now and I still love my job. It’s nice knowing that you make a difference. Hopefully we make a difference for you too, by getting you the fastest care possible.

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About the author: Alex Towbin

Alex is a radiologist and the Neil D. Johnson Chair of Radiology Informatics. In this role, he helps to manage the information systems used by the Radiology department. Clinically, Alex is the Assistant Director of thoracoabdominal imaging. His research interests include liver disease, liver tumors, inflammatory bowel disease, and appendicitis.