Position statement on self-referral for MRI examination

Clinical Imaging Board (CIB) does not support self-referral

Published: 11 August 2021 MRI

The CIB provides guidance, oversight and support for the continuing development of high-quality clinical imaging services for patients in the UK.

CIB position statement on self-referral for MRI examination:

Any imaging study forms part of the overall diagnostic jigsaw that includes a history, examination and appropriate additional studies.  It is necessary that an appropriate formal referral is generated by a registered healthcare professional following the appropriate clinical assessment.  The result of the study, following its radiological interpretation, is then sent to the referring professional so the result can be interpreted in the context of the overall clinical assessment.

This is particularly important as any imaging study can give rise to unexpected findings which may be of no consequence or may have serious implications.

It should also be noted that the injection of an MR contrast agent (if required) is contraindicated in certain circumstances, and therefore requires proper clinical assessment prior to referral, vetting and undertaking such examination.

Therefore, the CIB does not support the self-referral by the patient for MRI or any diagnostic imaging study.

The CIB was established in September 2013 by the Society and College of Radiographers, The Royal College of Radiologists and the Institute of Physics and Engineering in Medicine.