3-10. INEXTRICABLE INTER-RELATIONSHIPS ACROSS DEPARTMENTS
a. No Department is an Island. It goes without saying that no department is
totally self-sufficient. Specialty clinics depend upon diagnostic departments to aid in
treatment. Thus, for example, an orthopedic surgeon cannot properly set a bone without
the x-ray films to demonstrate the type and placement of the fracture.
b. Dependence on Administrative and Support Functions. All departments
depend on administrative and support elements that provide supplies, medical records,
housekeeping services, and so forth.
c. Intra-Departmental Cooperation Essential. Few patients are likely to
require the services of all departments during a given hospital stay. But, the well-being
of most patients does require the cooperative efforts of many departments.
3-11. THE CHAIN OF COMMAND
a. Lines of Authority and Responsibility. The chain of command is the
organizational structure (in this case, that of a hospital). That structure determines the
lines of authority and responsibility, as well as the appropriate channels of vertical
b. Complaints. The channels for handling complaints and problems are
prescribed by the chain of command. If you have a complaint about a troublesome
patient, the proper avenue of redress is through the next person above you in the chain
of command, namely, the chief technologist, or Non-Commissioned Officer in Charge
(NCOIC). The NCOIC will take up your complaint with the radiologist, who will, in turn
discuss the problem with the attending physician responsible for the treatment of the
patient in question.
c. Policies, Directives, and Method of Communication. Besides handling
complaints and problems, the chain of command is designed to issue and enforce
policies and directives. It also provides an organized method of communication among
the various departments and services.
d. Organizational Chart. The organizational chart shown (figure 3-2) indicates
lines of authority and responsibility for a typical radiology department. (Department
organization may, of course, vary somewhat from one locale to another.) If, for
example, a patient had a complaint about a technologist, it would, hopefully, be directed
through the NCOIC and resolved at the lowest level possible, as opposed to being
channeled directly to the Hospital Commander. To take another example, a student
coordinator (see figure 3-2) would address any complaint that he or she might have
through the next person in the chain; in this case, the assistant NCOIC, and so forth.