Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences news archive
Please visit the Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences news page for recent articles.
Student Success – Best paper award
Former PhD student, Dr Chin Chin Ooi (PhD 2015) from the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, was recently awarded the Postgraduate Prize for the best paper published in the Journal of the British Medical Ultrasound Society ('Ultrasound'). Her paper which formed part of her research studies at Monash is titled “Real-time sono-elastography evaluation of the Achilles tendon following ultrasound-guided platelet-rich plasma injection and eccentric exercise for the treatment of refractory Achilles tendinopathy”.
Chin Chin was supervised by Prof Michal Schneider and A/Prof David Connell (Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences), in collaboration with A/Prof Peter Malliaris (Physiotherapy).
We congratulate Chin Chin on this wonderful achievement!
Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences Award Winners 2019
Every successful graduate is to be congratulated for their achievement in becoming a fully-fledged radiographer, radiation therapist or medical sonographer. There are also opportunities for some who excel to receive acknowledgment in the form of prizes from professional bodies and companies. These awards demonstrate the close links the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences has with their professional and commercial colleagues. We would like to thank our partners for their contributions and congratulate the student award winners.
Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists (RANZCR): Awarded to NATASHA MILES with the best project in research in Medical Imaging. The role of the sonographer: An Investigation of the Scope of Practice of the Sonographer Internationally.
Australian Society of Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapy (ASMIRT): Awarded to JERRIE MIAH FRANCISCO with the highest aggregate marks throughout the Bachelor of Radiography and Medical Imaging (Honours).
SIEMENS Prize for MRI: Awarded to JERRIE MIAH FRANCISCO with the highest aggregate mark in MRI studies.
ASMIRT: Awarded to GABRIELLE DRUM who achieved the highest aggregate marks over the entire course of study in the graduate entry Master of Radiation Therapy.
DMIRS Student Prize: awarded to GEORGIA PARRY who, in addition to academic excellence, made a considerable contribution to the enhancement of learning and teaching within our department beyond the basic course requirements.
ELEKTA: Awarded to JAMES CUMMINGS for attaining the highest mark in the Year 2 professional presentations in Radiation Therapy program.
Well done to these students Health care provision will be made all the better by the successes of the graduates.
Placement experiences from the front line during the COVID-19 Pandemic
Fourth year Radiography and Medical Imaging student Joseph Cheong, featured in an insightful LENS article, sharing the ups and downs of his placement experience during the COVID-19 Pandemic.
“Where to start! I was fortunate enough to be able to continue my placement. I would joke with my fellow radiography friend: "… imagine knowing about this four months ago …" Cut to four months later, and it's almost unrecognisable to what we hoped our placement would turn out like. It was such a whiplash to what we were expecting to get out of our placement, and things became pretty complicated. It was a difficult and ever-changing situation, but I knew I had to adapt to my surroundings and do my best to get things done.
I currently have my placement at Box Hill Hospital. I was supposed to rotate to different hospitals during my placement. However, due to the impact of COVID-19, movement between sites is limited, and I was kept here for the remainder of my placement. Additionally, it was easier to have some interns who knew the local protocol rather than having to train new staff members during this unsettling time.
At first I wasn't allowed near any COVID-suspected patients. However, as the situation developed, there was an increasing need to reduce the burden on other staff members, so I was allowed to help out. While the usual work was cut down, our cases were more complicated. Recently, I've been doing x-rays on COVID-suspected patients by myself, which is a big change for me. One night I would be learning how to do them with supervision, and the next I was expected to do them myself. I was hesitant, but I just remembered to stick to my training and get the job done, and to just think more carefully about what I was doing. On reflection, it was pretty satisfying working more independently as my confidence grew.
Personally, it's been a stressful time, but it's exciting to be part of a team that has to step up to this once-in-a-lifetime pandemic, and I'm encouraged by all the hard work done by everyone during this time of crisis.”
Success in growing overseas clinical placements - Radiography
Monash Radiography have just allocated a number of students for overseas placements in 2020. Since 2016 the department have worked to grow the overseas placements options. These have been hugely successful with some very exciting additions to the options available. These placements offer students a culturally rich experience and adds to their professional development. Students can attend Warrington and Hallmm NHS in England, Aberdeen NHS Royal Infirmary in Scotland, Mahidol University Hospital in Bangkok in Thailand, Al-Ain Hospital in the UAE and Sourasky Medical Centre in Tel-Aviv, Israel.
Feedback from the students in 2019 shows how rich and broad these experiences are. The department thanks their overseas institution partners for their support in making this programme a success.
VMRPET Successful recipients 2020
Three research projects led by staff at the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences have successfully been funded by the Victorian Medical Radiation Practitioners Education Trust for 2020. The three projects involve ten staff across the department working on professional and educational initiatives in sonography, radiation therapy and radiography.
- Mr John McInerney, Prof Michal Schneider, Dr Paul Lombardo
Dept of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences
Title: How does statutory regulation influence practice? An exploration of the understanding and experiences of sonographers in Australia.
The objective of this project is to explore practitioners’ perceptions of the impact of regulation on ultrasound practice in Australia. ($ 9,500)
- Dr Kellie Knight, Ms Catherine Osborne, Ms Kylie Auld, A/Prof Caroline Wright
Dept of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences
Title: A qualitative investigation into radiation therapy student experiences of using a cloud-based treatment planning system.
This study aims to explore RT student experiences of skill development using a cloud-based TP system and the application of acquired skills into clinical practice ($ 10,000)
- Prof Jenny Sim, Dr Cynthia Cowling, Ms Ruth Druva, Dept of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, together with
Ms Saba Ansari (Deakin University), Prof Elizabeth Molloy (University of Melbourne)
Title: Examining the impact of final year radiography students on Medical Imaging services during clinical placement: a pilot study.
This study aims to investigate the contributions of final year radiography students on Medical Imaging services with the aim of providing evidence-based information upon which decisions related to supervision and workflow can be determined. ($10,000).
Final Collaboration with Chulabhorn Royal Academy, Bangkok
Last month, Dr Cynthia Cowling and Vinh Trinh, a sonographer based at St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne, and clinical tutor For Monash travelled to Thailand for the last series of sonography workshops. This comprised four workshops in MSK and Vascular Ultrasound. Participants ranged from Masters in Medical Sonography students to leading radiologists and vascular surgeons in Bangkok and Chiang Mai (where two of the workshops were held). As with previous workshops, the key foci were clinical teaching and the Australian scope of practice for sonographers. Thailand has recognised the importance of well-trained sonographers and these workshops admirably show cased both Monash University and the high quality and expertise of sonographers educated through the university and working in the clinical field.
The pair reported that it has been an immense privilege to work with their Thai partners throughout this collaboration, and extremely gratifying seeing sonographers of the calibre of Vinh Trinh demonstrating their skills and knowledge to the medical profession in Thailand.
Radiation therapy team to develop micro credentialed modules for leading edge technology in cancer care
In 2020 Caroline Wright and Catherine Osborne will be collaborating with the Northern Sydney Cancer Centre (NSCC) to develop a series of micro-credentialed modules to train Radiation Therapists in a new targeted cancer treatment. NSCC is currently one of only three centres in the world to offer this treatment. Ethos therapy (Varian Oncology systems) is an artificial intelligence-based individualised solution that modifies daily radiation therapy treatment according to a patient's anatomy and position at the time of treatment. The goal is to better target the tumour, reduce dose to healthy tissue, and potentially improve patient outcomes.
Sir John Monash Medal Honours
Nathan Le who graduated from the Bachelor of Radiography and Medical Imaging (Hons) course, was awarded the FMNHS Sir John Monash Medal at the May graduation ceremony. The award recognised his excellent academic record as well as his commitment to Monash University over and above the normal expectations. During his 4-years as a student, he played a remarkable role as a radiography student mentor, anatomy and pathology practical lab demonstrator, assisting Y3 students transitioning into Y4, and representing his Y4 cohort as a member of the Course Management Committee. He was an inaugural Monash Radiography Students’ Society (MRSS) committee member and Y2 representative. He participated in a Pebblepad ePortfolio Webinar - Student Voice. In addition, he advocated for the Australian Society of Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapy (ASMIRT) Rural Placement Scheme. This resulted in a publication to SPECTRUM. Nathan was also the recipient of the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Science student prize. Congratulations Nathan!
2019 student awards
Congratulations to both students.
Ultrasound on the Threshold of Change
Report from Natasha Miles 4th year Bachelor of Radiography and Medical Imaging (Hons) student (2019)
General sonographic practice in Thailand is undergoing a critical reform.
In prior years, comprehensive sonographic examinations - usually the domain of sonographers in Australia - were performed by radiologists. Ultrasound imaging was expensive to obtain, inaccessible to rural communities, and caused undue strain on the radiologist workforce. The previous system was not working.
A new ultrasound training program under the generous patronage of HRH Princess Chulabhorn aspires to combat this shortage. Dr Jiraporn Laothamatas, head of the project, formed a collaboration with Monash University, Australia to establish a two-year postgraduate qualification for sonographers. The inaugural class has three students, with hopes to dramatically expand in the future.
As a third-year radiography student from Monash, I was granted the opportunity to spend two weeks in December 2018 at their brand new facility in Bangkok. I spent six days observing and assisting with sonographic examinations at the Chulabhorn Royal Hospital in Bangkok, and an additional three days attending an abdominal ultrasound short course offered by the school.
The ultrasound clinical site had an emphasis on hepatic pathology - particularly hepatitis - with vascular and thyroid scans also commonly performed. I observed sonographic examinations performed by radiologists, intern physicians and, excitingly, the first ever class of trainee sonographers.
I was encouraged to practice my sonographic technique on abdominal patients, witnessing pathologies as diverse as hepatic metastases, cholecystitis, acute ureteric hydronephrosis and complex ovarian cysts.
The abdominal ultrasound short course was similarly edifying. Attended by forty-two students, a mix of physicians and ultrasound master’s students, the course was a three-day intensive series teaching the basics of abdominal ultrasound. Didactic, bilingual Thai-English lectures were delivered in the morning, with small group practical scanning sessions attended in the afternoons. The final practical session incorporated patients from the affiliated hospital. Ultrasound physics and the anatomy, pathology and methods of scanning abdominal organs were covered by the seminar. The short course provided insight into how sonographic education is delivered in Thailand, and a valuable extension to my current understanding of sonographic practice.
I am grateful for the generosity and hospitality of my Thai hosts, and to Monash University, particularly Dr Cynthia Cowling, for this opportunity. I hope to integrate some of my findings into a 4th year Honours research project regarding intercultural differences in ultrasound education and practice.
Overall, the experience was an incredible chance to witness the nascence of a sonographic education system and develop my intercultural understanding. I hope that it reinforces the relationship between Monash University and Chulabhorn Royal Academy and encourages their future collaboration.
The inaugural class of Masters of Ultrasound students, and members of the CRA faculty. In order from L to R, Panitaporn Sriparat, Surapa Hairunjit, Natasha Miles, Dr. Surachate Siripongsakun, Dr. Siwat Pumiwat and Pantajaree Hiranat.
An abdominal scanning workshop, with instructor Sirinda Yimsawad.
Research in Excellence Seminar 2018
This year the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, at Monash University, hosted a one-day seminar on Excellence in Research. The conference was attended by around 123 staff, students, clinicians and academics. “The goal of the conference was to showcase the research being performed by Monash University staff and students” said Professor Marilyn Baird, head of department. “We also want to inspire our existing cohort of students to undertake research in their clinical roles” said Dr Matthew Dimmock, a lecturer in the department. In order to facilitate this goal, nine eminent keynote speakers were invited to present. Keynote speakers included:
- Professor Terry Haines (Head, School of Primary and Allied Health Care, Monash University)
- Professor Charlotte Rees (Director, Monash Centre for Scholarship in Health Education (MCSHE), Faculty of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences)
- Mr Peter Coombs (Chief Sonographer, Monash Health and Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, Monash University)
- Dr Chris Hall (Senior Scientist, Australian Synchrotron)
- Dr Jason Callahan (Nuclear Medicine Technologist, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre)
- Dr Chris O’Donnell (Consultant Forensic Radiologist, Victorian Institute of Forensic Medicine and Adjunct Senior Lecturer, Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, Monash University)
- Associate Professor David Connell (Musculoskeletal Radiologist and Adjunct Associate Professor, Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, Monash University
- Associate Professor Robin Hart (Senior Lecturer and Course Convenor Bachelor of Radiation Sciences, Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences, Monash University) Dr Sharna Jamadar (Cognitive Neuroscientist and ARC DECRA Fellow, Monash Biomedical Imaging)
In the subsequent sessions of the day 11 other PhD candidates, senior academics and students from the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences presented their most recent findings. The day was rounded off with a panel discussion, chaired by Professor Marilyn Baird. “It’s great to see so many of our graduate students come together at an event like this” said A/Prof Michal Schneider, senior lecturer in the department.
The Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences hosts an excellence in research seminar every two years. Attendance at the seminar attracts a certificate of attendance which can be used by practitioners as evidence for meeting continuing professional development requirements. Please contact the Department if you would like to be put on a registration list for our next seminar.
Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences staff represent at ISRRT World Congress
The International Society of Radiographers and Radiological Technologists (ISRRT) recently held its 2018 World Congress in Trinidad and Tobago, the first time held in an emerging nation. The Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences was represented by Cynthia Cowling and Lori Boyd who both represented three times in such diverse areas as storytelling in mammographic teaching to impact of social media on teaching radiography and the role of the radiographer. Cynthia Cowling was awarded the Dien Van Dijk Award for contributions to the radiographic profession globally. This is only awarded once every four years and is in recognition of exceptional service to the education of radiographers and the development of medical radiation technology worldwide.
Overseas Clinical Placements for DMIRS students
7 Year two students from the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences have been accepted to complete their 4 week, Semester 2 placements overseas. Two students will be attending: Aberdeen (Scotland), Warrington (UK) and Thailand and one student will be attending Tel Aviv (Israel).
DIEN VAN DIJK Award
The milestone 20th International Society of Radiographers and Radiation Technologist (ISRRT) World Congress was held from 12-15 April 2018, Port-of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago.
It is with great pleasure to announce that Cynthia Cowling was the recipient of the DIEN VAN DIJK Award. This award is in honor of the contributions of Dien van Dijk, one of the founders of the ISRRT and who in 1962 became the first President of the ISRRT. The objectives of which she upheld were to assist the education of radiographers and to support the development of medical radiation technology worldwide. This award dedicated to her memory is to honor members of the ISRRT who have shown exceptional service and commitment to the ideals so powerfully demonstrated by Dien Van Dijk.
The award is based on the recipient's recognized activities which reflect the founding principles of the ISRRT, assistance in the education of radiographers and assistance in the development of the profession in several countries.
Harold Anderson Memorial - Best Student Paper
Our 2017 graduate, Hogan Sharpe received the Harold Anderson Memorial - Best Student Paper 2018 for his paper entitled: Predicting femoral geometry using an articulated statistical shape-model constrained to simulated motion-capture markers. The award was presented at the Australian Society of Medical Imaging and Radiation Therapy (ASMIRT) Conference held in Canberra.
HONORABLE MENTION E-POSTER
Daniel Sapkaroski received an honourable mention for his ePoster on ‘Quantification of student radiographic patient positioning using immersive virtual reality simulation (CETSOL)’.
Overall, the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences was well represented at the conference with papers presented by academics, current and recent graduates covering a wide range of topics.
- Williams, I: Evaluation of radiographer accuracy in providing written comments following short course in image interpretation.
- Anderson, N: Augmenting a radiation therapist research cultue across multi-campus service
- Matthews, K: Conceptualising radiation therapy advanced practice findings from a national focus group study
- Chau, J: Issues arising from incidental findings in subjects undergoing medical imaging for teaching and research
- Lee, K: CT learning via high fidelity simulation for undergraduate radiography students
- Anderson, N: Independent validation of a feeding tube prognostic application (App) for head and neck radiotherapy patients
- Sapkaroski, D: Implementing a virtual reality simulation clinic with dynamic patient interaction and communication for medical imaging students
- Cowling, C: Use of digital storytelling to each evidence-based breast imaging to radiography students
- Sharpe, H: Predicting femoral geometry using an articulated statistical shape-model constrained to simulated motion-capture markers
Dr Caroline Wright chaired a Q&A panel on ‘Student professional dilemmas’ and Catherine Osborne was an invited panel member for a session on Knowledge Based Radiation Therapy Planning.
In January 2017 Dr Caroline Wright was appointed by the COAG Health Council to the Medical Radiation Practice Board of Australia as a practitioner member. Caroline commenced this position in February 2018.
Delegation - HRH Princess Chulabhorn College of Medical Sciences
The Department of Medical imaging and Radiation Sciences have collaborated with the HRH Princess Chulabhorn College of Medical Science (Bangkok) to create a Sonography School for the provision of post graduate sonography coursework materials and ultrasound training workshops.
On February 22, the department hosted a senior delegation from HRH Princess Chulabhorn College of Medical Sciences. The delegation met with the Dean and Senior Faculty leaders and also toured the Monash Biomedical Institute Research Facility.
Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences collaboration in the creation of a Sonography School
The Department of Medical imaging and Radiation Sciences have collaborated with the HRH Princess Chulabhorn College of Medical Science (Bangkok) to create a Sonography School for the
provision of post graduate sonography coursework materials and ultrasound training workshops. The contract, worth $400,000 obliges MIRS to the following deliverables: Deliverable 1 (Year 1): Creation and delivery of curriculum materials suitable for a Graduate Certificate in Medical Ultrasound comprising 4 subjects; Deliverable 2 (Year 2): Creation and delivery of curriculum materials suitable for a Graduate Diploma of Medical Ultrasound comprising 4 subjects; Deliverable 3 (Year 1): Train The Trainer - Creation and face to face delivery of a clinically oriented Train the Trainer Package for Ultrasound
Scanning i.e. a practical manual with visual resources that will assist radiologists to develop knowledge and skills in how to train other practitioners how to perform medical ultrasound, and Face to face support to facilitate the implementation in practice of the principles underpinning effective training and assessment in the clinical environment. Deliverable 4 (Year 1 and Year 2): Curriculum Development - Year 1: Visit by expert consultant to assist with core curriculum development on-site (1 week); Provision of supplementary resources and materials. - Year 2: Visit by expert consultant to assist with core curriculum development onsite (2 weeks); Provision of supplementary resources and materials. The major activity from July to October 2017 was meeting deliverables 1 and 3. In December, Professor Marilyn Baird and Cynthia Cowling were invited to the Opening ceremony, where Professor
Baird spoke on the Evolution of Sonography Education and Professional Accreditation in Australia. Ms Cowling presented a talk, From Radiographer to Sonographer: The Impact upon HealthCare of the Creation of the sonography Professional. They were also given a tour of the new sonography school, which boasts eight state of the art ultrasound units, and three simulation phantoms. Following this, Professor
Baird and Ms Cowling were given the very special privilege to be introduced formally to Professor Dr. HRH Chulabhorn and were apprised of the protocol required when greeting the Princess and bowed appropriately to receive a gift from her. Images below show Cynthia and Marilyn in the presence of HRH. Chulabhorn Royal Academy is developing a full slate of medical and health programs and has chosen models and programs from across the globe upon which to build their schools. The Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences is very proud to be the only program chosen from Australia, and proud to represent Monash, a University very highly regarded in Thailand. This collaboration has led to potentially new opportunities for Monash with a delegation set to meet with the Dean and senior faculty leaders later this month.
The Victorian Rural GP Radiography Training Course
Ruth Druva from the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences recently ran the annual GP radiography training course in the medical imaging department at Goulbourn Valley Hospital. The medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences department have been training rural GPs in basic radiography positioning skills for the extremities for well over a decade. The course enables these GPs to gain a use radiation licence and take “x-rays” under a limited licencing arrangement. This course is approved by both the RANZCGP and the Australian College of Rural and Remote Medicine.
Pebble Pad Event
“Re-imagining Portfolios” - a Pebble Pad Event for the Victorian Tertiary Sector was held in late March. The Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences were invited by Shane Sutherland, the founder of PebblePad, to provide the keynote address “Transforming the Radiography program with the Personal Learning Platform at its core." Marilyn Baird presented the overview and Ruth Druva presented course specific details (with full acknowledgement to John McInerney). Luke Meeking, who completed the BRadMedImag (Hons) last December and who is now a radiographer at the Royal Melbourne, came along and added to the student perspective. For further information about Pebble pad, please see www.pebblepad.co.uk and PebbleBash case studies.
The Singapore Institute of Technology Project
In early May, the Department of Medical Imaging and Radiation Sciences signed a contract with the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) to provide a series of radiography iSAP cases over 3 years the total funds over 3 years are $10,873. SIT is now the sole provider of health profession education for Singapore and all programs are now 4 year bachelor degrees.