Q. What is the MQSA?
A. The Mammography Quality Standards Act (MQSA) was enacted by the United States Congress to regulate the quality of care in mammography. The act was officially effective in 1994, and was extended in 2004 to continue through 2007. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) began inspections of mammography facilities to ensure compliance in 1995. In 1997, more comprehensive regulation was added to become effective in 1999.
The FDA explains MQSA:
The Mammography Quality Standards Act requires mammography facilities across the nation to meet uniform quality standards. Congress passed this law in 1992 to assure high-quality mammography for early breast cancer detection, which can lead to early treatment, a range of treatment options leading to an increased chance of survival. Under the law, all mammography facilities must: 1) be accredited by an FDA-approved accreditation body, 2) be certified by FDA, or its State, as meeting the standards, 3) undergo an annual MQSA inspection, and 4) prominently display the certificate issued by the agency.