Improving Health Through Medical Physics

QATrack Update

Crystal Angers, Ryan Bottema, Lesley Buckley, Ryan Studinski | The Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre (TOHCC) and Randy Taylor | Multi Leaf Consulting

AAPM Newsletter — Volume 44 No.2 — March | April 2019

Picture of Crystal Angers Crystal Anger
Picture of Ryan Bottema Ryan Bottema
Picture of Lesley Buckley Lesley Buckley
Picture of Ryan Studinski Ryan Studinski
Picture of Randy Taylor Randy Taylor
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QATrack+ v0.3.0 with Service Log now in Clinical Use at TOHCC

QATrack+ is a free and open source web application for managing the machine QA/QC programs of radiation therapy and diagnostic imaging clinics. Originally developed at The Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre (TOHCC) in 2012, the QATrack+ user and developer community has grown steadily over past years and QATrack+ is now deployed in over 35 radiation therapy and diagnostic imaging departments worldwide.

QATrack+ forms the foundation of the infrastructure QA program at TOHCC. It supports our entire equipment QC program and is also used to track treatment planning system QC, calibration of secondary and tertiary standards, and routine radiation safety checks such as survey meter calibration and source inventory checks. Over 200 users (therapists, physicists, technologists and service technicians), spanning 2 hospital campuses, routinely use QATrack+ executing more than 1700 test lists each month.

Figure 1: QATrack+ supports Equipment QC, Reference Dosimetry and Radiation Safety programs at the General and Irvin Greenburg Cancer Centre (IGFCC) campuses.

Shortly after the initial deployment of QATrack+ we recognized the potential advantages of linking equipment QC to machine service work. We ambitiously set a goal of integrating machine service log into a future version of QATrack+ and a project plan was drafted to define the scope and a development pathway. TOHCC launched the service log project in the fall of 2016 and began by establishing use cases, a high-level requirements document, a database taxonomy and a working prototype. Receipt of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) Innovation Grant in the spring of 2017 provided financial support for the project and allowed us to contract Multi Leaf Consulting (Randy Taylor) to assist with support and software development. Following 2 years of hard work we are pleased to announce that QATrack+ v0.3.0 is released and that it has been in clinical use at TOHCC since October. With version 0.3.0 the functionality of QATrack+ has been extended to include entry, review and approval of service events, to link service events with associated QC test data, and to include service events on QC trending plots. Additional features include a parts database, machine uptime reports, and a service log dashboard which reports the most recent service event activity. Similar to the configuration flexibility offered for QC test lists, QATrack+ provides numerous configurable service event fields such as service type, service area and service event status. At TOHCC, we have configured the service event status field so that is can be used to support workflow. Service events may have a status of Pending, Complete or Approved and a configurable “Requires Review” flag identifies those service events which require review and approval by a physicist.

Figure 2: Service log menu.
Figure 3: Service Event documenting XVI (kV) panel replacement and return to service tests. Note the associated failed XVI 2D and 3D Image Quality test list in the “Initiated by” field and the file attachment of the bad clinical image.

The service log functionality offered by QATrack+ v0.3.0 greatly improves machine service oversight and helps to ensure that TOHCC meets regulatory requirements for return to service testing. As part of the v0.3.0 implementation we migrated over 10,000 service records from our previous machine service database (Accel v7.0.4) permitting continued access to valuable historic service information via a modernized platform which provides numerous data filter options (figure 4).

Figure 4: This screen capture demonstrates the benefit of data filters. In this example service events have been filtered to show all events related to the optical distance indicator (ODI) year to date.
Figure 5: Example of service events superimposed on data trending plots of daily and monthly outputs.

In addition to service log, QATrack+ v0.3.0 incorporates many other new and valuable features:

  • An API for automating QC data entry
  • Online image analysis (picket fence, starshot etc) via pylinac
  • Support for importing/exporting test configurations via QATrack+ TestPacks
  • New and improved online documentation
  • File Attachment capability at the point of test list configuration, during test list execution and during service event entry or edit
  • Comment Tracking on Test lists and RTS QA

Full details of the v0.3.0 features are available in the QATrack+ v0.3.0 release notes, and a complete list of bug fixes can be found on BitBucket.

The authors would like to acknowledge and thank our physics and service technologist colleagues who provided valuable feedback during the validation and implementation phases of the project. We also gratefully acknowledge the financial support provided by the CNSC Innovation fund.

If you would like to learn more about the TOHCC implementation of v0.3.0 and the service log functionality, please don't hesitate to contact one of the authors. If you are not familiar with QATrack+ we encourage you to consider joining our community, qatrackplus, multileaf.

Figure 6: QATrack+ is deployed in over 35 radiation therapy and diagnostic imaging departments worldwide (map image courtesy of ©Mapbox, ©OpenStreetMap).
This article has been reproduced, with permission, from COMP InterACTIONS 65(1) January 2019 (the newsletter of the Canadian Organization of Medical Physicists)

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