IAEA debuts radiotherapy patient safety tool

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) has debuted a new tool for radiotherapy patient safety known as SAFRON, or Safety in Radiation Oncology.

SAFRON is a voluntary Web-based user system for improving the safety and quality of care in radiation therapy by sharing knowledge about incidents and near incidents, IAEA said. It enables radiotherapy centers to contribute incidents and near misses to an international learning system, allowing the participating centers to share and receive the information.

Radiotherapy centers can use the pooled information to develop patient safety systems that can prevent or reduce the likelihood of an incident occurring at their own facilities. Contributing institutions are able to review their own incidents and incidents that have been submitted by other participating centers. Information from other facilities remains anonymous to protect contributors from punitive actions.

The goal of SAFRON is to help centers learn from their own mistakes and those of other institutions, reducing the chance of repeat errors. SAFRON includes information on treatment setup errors, what caused the errors, and what has been done to prevent a repeat occurrence, IAEA said.

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