Queen's University
Standard Operating Procedures

System Billing Guide

1. Introduction

  • The 3T MRI Facility is used primarily for in-vivo studies of human and animal structure and function. These studies include assessment of metabolism and physiology, cognitive function and vascular dynamics, not only in normal and research patient populations, but also in in-vitro and animal models using a variety of advanced nuclear magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy techniques. The facility resources are available to peer-reviewed grant funded scientific collaborators with appropriate Research Ethics Board (REB) protocols in place. See SOP# 04 “New Protocols and Ethics Procedures”.
  • Full-time technical support for scanner operation is provided and included in hourly rates during regular weekday hours, Monday through Friday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. Scanning support for after-hours and weekend scanning may be arranged on a subcontract basis. For scanner scheduling please contact the Departmental and Financial Assistant at conwaya@queensu.ca
  • Rates are periodically discussed and adjusted by the Executive Committee of CNS, on advice of the Facility Management Committee (FMC). These rates are determined through careful consideration of the facility operating costs and overhead. Notification of rate changes is given for the next several years.

2. Billing Guide

  • All billing begins at the start time indicated on the 3T MRI Schedule regardless of whether or not the investigator and/or the experimental support personnel are present and ready to proceed.
  • The investigator and/or experimental support personnel are responsible for organizing the experiment such that it begins at the start time and ends at the end time as scheduled+. An experiment will not be allowed to exceed the scheduled time, unless there is time available on the schedule following the question and the operator agrees to stay and operate the scanner for the extra time allotted.
    +Note that the end time means exiting the MR control room and having replaced all equipment to their normal operating state and not exiting the magnet room at that time.

3. Current Rates

  1. All rates are predetermined by the Facility Management Committee (FMC) and are subject to periodic review. The current rates are as follow:
    1. Current rates for members of the CNS (as of July 1st, 2018):
      • Research Study rates:
        • 9:00 am – 9:00 pm. $400/hr – operator assisted arrangement
        • Saturday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. $400/hr + an additional 33% fee for weekend usage – operator assisted, with prior arrangement
        • Please note the MR Facility will be open two evenings per week. In the event the facility is required on an additional evening, the Saturday rate will apply.
    2. Rates for non CNS members, industry contracts, clinical trials etc. can be requested from the Facility Lead, Dr. Patrick Stroman at stromanp@queensu.ca

4. Future Rates

The Facility Management Committee (FMC) has determined that future rate increases will occur on a schedule outlined below.  Please use this schedule to budget future studies:

Date

Internal Rate

May 1, 2019

$450/hr

May 1, 2020

$500/hr

May 1, 2021

$550/hr

May 1, 2022

$600/hr

      Note that facility usage outside regular hours or on Saturdays will be an additional 33%. 

      External Rates for Industry and Clinical Trials can be obtained from the Lead of the MR Facility, Dr. Patrick Stroman at stromanp@queensu.ca 

5. Incidental Findings

  1. Incidental findings discovered during imaging will be sent to a radiologist and billed at $100/hr.  These costs are billed to the investigator responsible for the session.  While typically these findings are rare, if your subject group is likely to contain an unusually high amount of incidental findings, then the investigator is encouraged to make arrangements to have these scans read by a collaborating radiologist, thus avoiding these fees.  What constitutes an incidental finding is at the discretion of the technologist and the Facility Director.

6. Scheduling

  • All studies must be first approved by the FMC and must be booked through the Departmental and Financial Assistant at conwaya@queensu.ca.
  • The 3T MRI Schedule is available for viewing through the Scheduling Page.
  • The MR Technologist will be available for studies:
    • Monday, Tuesday and Friday* 09:00-17:00
    • Wednesday and Thursday* 09:00-20:00 
    • +There may be Maintenance or Facility listed on the schedule. Scanning is not possible during those times. Time for study setup within the control room may be possible during Maintenance Time – contact the technologist to find out.
  • In order to maximize the facility schedule users will use the following start times for studies whenever possible. One hour time slots are also available. All scheduling is to be done in consultation with the MR Technologist. The MR Technologist is working to maximize booking availability for all users and may as such be required to request a specific start date from the user group to best accommodate all users.
    • 9:00 1 ½ hour booking
    • 10:30 1 ½ hour booking
    • 13:00 2 hour booking
    • 15:00 1 ½ hour booking
    • Shorter or longer time slots may still be booked, preferably starting at one of these 4 start times, to allow time for other users to book studies before or after.
  • Access for editing the 3T MRI Scheduling is restricted to the Departmental and Financial Assistant, the MR Technologist and the Facility Director. Investigators and/or experimental support personnel are required to contact the AJ Conway at conwaya@queensu.ca to book time on the 3T MRI Schedule. 

7. Cancellation Policy

  • If an investigator wishes to transfer their scan time to another study or investigator, they must notify the head operator with at least 72 hours notice. Failure to notify the operator may result in the loss of scan time and being billed for the session.
  • The cancellation policy for the 3T MRI Facility is as follow:
    • 72 hours notice is required to cancel a scan session.
    • If the Facility has not received 72 hours notice, the appropriate principal investigator will be billed in full for the scan session.
  • The Facility Director may be required to cancel time booked on the 3T MRI at the facilities discretion in the event of equipment failures or any other unexpected events. 

8. Tour Policy

  • Tours for educational purposes are available at the discretion of the MRI Facility Directory with advance arrangement, and are to be led by the Facility Director, or the Director of the CNS. If you would like to inquire about arranging an educational tour, please contact the MR Technologist at fmri@queensu.ca.
  • Tour organizers are responsible for paying for the MRI facility time at the research study rates listed in section 3.