Purpose: To implement an easy-to-use cloud based quality assurance (QA) service to replace an existing framework of utilizing in-house spreadsheets and code to perform and analyze linac, brachytherapy, and CT QA.
Methods: Performing, recording, and storing QA are essential to radiation therapy. The tasks of recording, analyzing, and storing normally employ customized, in-house spreadsheets and code that have to be internally maintained. Maintaining such a system can become complicated and error prone. Total QA® (Image Owl, Inc.), a QA creation, record, storage, analysis, and presentation service, is designed to meet an institution's QA needs and AAPM task group recommendations. For comparison, in-house safety, dosimetry, and mechanical QA tools, code, and spreadsheets for linacs, brachytherapy, and CT scanners were recreated in TQA and reviewed to assess the accuracy and validity of cloud-based system. After a satisfactory evaluation, a year’s worth of QA were entered into TQA to create baseline metrics for each machine.
Results: All existing linac, brachytherapy, and CT QA were successfully constructed in TQA to meet AAPM task group recommendations. Test creation, revisions, and maintenance were easier in TQA. Data entry, local and global analysis, and trend creations were faster and simpler in TQA. TQA eliminated the risk of accidently altering spreadsheet formulas and/or code. TQA data was easily accessible and readily presentable for QA documentation necessary for regulatory/accreditation procedures and visits.
Conclusion: Utilizing TQA to handle a clinics QA essential needs is more efficient, beneficial, and robust than maintaining in-house spreadsheets and code. TQA provides an easy, single point of access to facilitate any clinic’s desire to organize, record, store, and present QA data.