Quality management, quality assurance, and quality control in medical physics

Max Amurao, Dustin A. Gress, Mary Ann Keenan, Per H. Halvorsen, Jonathon A. Nye, Mahadevappa Mahesh

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The historic and ongoing evolution of the practice, technology, terminology, and implementation of programs related to quality in the medical radiological professions has given rise to the interchangeable use of the terms Quality Management (QM), Quality Assurance (QA), and Quality Control (QC) in the vernacular. This White Paper aims to provide clarification of QM, QA, and QC in medical physics context and guidance on how to use these terms appropriately in American College of Radiology (ACR) Practice Parameters and Technical Standards, generalizable to other guidance initiatives. The clarification of these nuanced terms in the radiology, radiation oncology, and nuclear medicine environments will not only boost the comprehensibility and usability of the Medical Physics Technical Standards and Practice Parameters, but also provide clarity and a foundation for ACR's clinical, physician-led Practice Parameters, which also use these important terms for monitoring equipment performance for safety and quality. Further, this will support the ongoing development of the professional practice of clinical medical physics by providing a common framework that distinguishes the various types of responsibilities borne by medical physicists and others in the medical radiological environment. Examples are provided of how QM, QA, and QC may be applied in the context of ACR Practice Parameters and Technical Standards.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere13885
JournalJournal of applied clinical medical physics
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2023


  • medical physics
  • quality assurance
  • quality control
  • quality management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Instrumentation
  • Radiation
  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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