Middlesboro ARH Hospital awarded accreditation for its mammography


Middlesboro ARH Hospital was awarded a three-year term of accreditation in mammography as the result of a recent review by the American College of Radiology (ACR).

Mammography is a specific type of imaging test that uses a low-dose X-ray system to examine breasts. A mammography exam, called a mammogram, is used to aid in the early detection and diagnosis of breast diseases in women.

In 2011, Middlesboro ARH purchased new state-of-the-art digital mammography equipment. The digital mammography system uses solid-state detectors that convert X-rays into electrical signals. These signals are used to produce images of the breast that can be seen on a computer screen. This is similar to the way digital cameras take and store pictures.

“When we purchased our digital mammography equipment, we made sure it was top of the line, shared Kathy Miracle, director of radiology at Middlesboro ARH. “This is important to know when choosing where to go for digital mammography, because there are some out there that say they offer digital mammography but their equipment could be substandard. The community can trust Middlesboro ARH to provide the highest quality digital mammography.”

Mammography can show changes in the breast up to two years before a patient or physician can feel them. According to Miracle, the digital images from the equipment at Middlesboro ARH Hospital are clear and precise, offering radiologists the best possible viewing.

“We are proud to be awarded a three-year accreditation in mammography by the American College of Radiology,” said Miracle.

The ACR gold seal of accreditation represents the highest level of image quality and patient safety. It is awarded only to facilities meeting ACR Practice Guidelines and Technical Standards after a peer-review evaluation by board-certified physicians and medical physicists who are experts in the field. Image quality, personnel qualifications, adequacy of facility equipment, quality control procedures, and quality assurance programs are assessed. The findings are reported to the ACR Committee on Accreditation, which subsequently provides the practice with a comprehensive report they can use for continuous practice improvement.


The ACR is a national professional organization serving more than 36,000 diagnostic/interventional radiologists, radiation oncologists, nuclear medicine physicians, and medical physicists with programs focusing on the practice of medical imaging and radiation oncology and the delivery of comprehensive health care services.

Middlesboro ARH Hospital is among the hospitals recognized as the nation’s Top Performers on Key Quality Measures by The Joint Commission, the leading accreditor of health care organizations in America.

Middlesboro ARH Hospital is a member of the Appalachian Regional Healthcare (ARH) system. ARH is a not-for-profit health system serving 350,000 residents across Eastern Kentucky and Southern West Virginia. Operating 10 hospitals, multi-specialty physician practices, home health agencies, HomeCare Stores and retail pharmacies, ARH is the largest provider of care and single largest employer in southeastern Kentucky and the third largest private employer in southern West Virginia.

The ARH system employs nearly 5,000 people and has a network of more than 600 active and courtesy medical staff members representing various specialties. Firmly committed to its mission of improving the health and promoting the well-being of all people in Eastern Kentucky and Southern West Virginia, in the past 12 months alone, ARH provided nearly $133 million in uncompensated care for the uninsured and underinsured.

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