The American College of Radiology (ACR) accreditation programs for diagnostic imaging are modality-based. They assess the qualifications of personnel, policies and procedures, equipment specifications, quality assurance (QA) activities, patient safety, image quality, and ultimately the quality of patient care. These evaluations focus on the process of delivering diagnostic imaging care. The Diagnostic Imaging Centers of Excellence (DICOE) program takes accreditation to the next level by providing a comprehensive assessment of the entire medical imaging enterprise, including structure and outcomes, as well as other benefits, including the following:
Participation in ACR registries at no cost
Ongoing process for self-assessment
Recognition that distinguishes your facility to providers, payers, patients and administrators
Customizable materials for local public relations and marketing
Diagnostic imaging facilities that wish to apply for this program must first be accredited by the ACR in all modalities that they provide. They must also participate in the ACR's General Radiology Improvement Database (GRID) and the Dose Index Registry (DIR)® and must pledge to Image Gently® and Image Wisely®. Applicants must agree to an on-site survey by a team that includes a radiologist, a medical physicist and a radiologic technologist or ACR senior accreditation staff.
A healthcare network, hospital, outpatient or free-standing imaging center will receive a DICOE designation based on participation in ACR accreditation programs for all modalities offered and participation in GRID and the Dose Index Registry®.
A healthcare network or a practice may include combination of locations (hospital, outpatient or free standing imaging centers). The DICOE designation is applicable to all locations within your practice included at the time of your application. These locations must be a part of one practice, which share common governance, policy, procedure, and radiologists group.
If a practice or a group practice consists of more than five sites within a state, the DICOE survey team holds a right to survey an additional site of their choice. The DICOE site survey is planned within the same trip to minimize travel expenses.
A separate application needs to be prepared for each state.
A DICOE designated location can add additional sites (up to five) through the mid cycle of DICOE designation period. There will be an additional processing fee for each added site during the period.
The DICOE team will request sites (or practice) to submit the Corrective Action Plan (CAP) within 90 days from the survey date.
To apply, visit the DICOE website to download the application. Please complete a separate application and fees for each state within the USA. A DICOE Designation period is for three years.
DICOE Payment Policy (Revised January 1, 2019)
DICOE defines a Practice as a single hospital/group practice. As long as these locations are within one state, one application is sufficient. A single DICOE application includes a maximum of five locations within the state. Please calculate and submit the total application fee along with a copy of your application.
Multi-state Radiology practices must complete a separate application for each state.
DICOE surveyors are required to survey at least one location.
Applicants agree to an on-site survey by a team that includes a radiologist, a medical physicist and ACR Staff.
Applicants agree to pay for the surveyor’s travel and expenses. Effective immediately, the DICOE program will charge a flat fee of $3500 to cover the travel costs, regardless of the number of sites our team visits during the survey.
Diagnostic Imaging Center of Excellence (DICOE) Per State
Number of Locations
Site Survey Required (Y/N)
Add Locations Mid-Cycle *
1 to 5
$300/location up to 5 locations
6 to 10
$300/location up to 10 locations
11 to 15
$300/location up to 15 locations
16 or more
Add $1000 per 5 sites
$300/location fewer than 4 additional locations
*Mid-cycle is defined as 1.5 years from the date of DICOE designation
Example 1: Practice #1 – Applied for 15 locations within one state
First 1-5 locations: $3000
6-10 locations: $2000
11-15 locations: $1000
Total Fee: $6000
Example 2: Practice #2 – Initial application included three locations. During mid- cycle, they add 2 locationsFirst 3 locations: $3000
Add 2 locations: $600
Total Fee: $3600
Example 3: Practice #3 – Original practice is in OH state and they need to add 3 locations in PAFirst application for OH: $3000
Add 3 locations for PA: $2000
Total Fee: $5000
The survey team meets with staff designated by the facility, including the radiologist medical director, medical physicist, lead technologist and chief administrator. Other staff also may be interviewed as deemed appropriate by the survey team. Areas of assessment include the following (click on an area of assessment to view detailed standards and elements of compliance):
Policies and procedures
If a practice has multiple sites, the main site will be surveyed along with additional satellite sites depending on how large the practice is.
If the facility has had a Validation Site Survey within 1 year of the DICOE survey, those data will be supplied to the team and only a random sample of those items needs to be verified.
Revision History for this Article
Description of Revision(s)
Article created; FAQs incorporated; No criteria changes
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