INTRODUCTION: Portable chest radiography through glass (TG-CXR) is a novel technique, particularly useful during the COVID-19 (Coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic . The purpose of this study was to understand the cost and benefit of adopting TG-CXR in quantifiable terms .
METHODS: Portable or bedside radiographs are typically performed by a team of two technologists . The TG-CXR method has the benefit of allowing one technologist to stay outside of the patient room while operating the portable radiography machine, reducing PPE use, decreasing the frequency of radiography machine sanitization and decreasing technologists' exposures to potentially infectious patients . The cost of implementing this technique during the current COVID-19 pandemic was obtained from our department's operational database . The direct cost of routinely used PPE and sanitization materials and the cost of the time taken by the technologists to clean the machine was used to form a quantitative picture of the benefit associated with TG-CXR technique .
RESULTS: Technologists were trained on the TG-CXR method during a 15 min shift change briefing . This translated to a one-time cost of $424.88 USD . There was an average reduction of portable radiography machine downtime of 4 min and 48 s per study . The benefit of adopting the TG-CXR technique was $9.87 USD per patient imaged . This will result in a projected net cost savings of $51,451.84 USD per annum .
CONCLUSION: Adoption of the TG-CXR technique during the COVID-19 pandemic involved minimal one-time cost, but is projected to result in a net-benefit of over $51,000 USD per annum in our emergency department.