Virginia Portable X-ray Regulations

Dec 15, 2022 7:12:04 AM / by Chad Hutchison

The Virginia Department of Health, X-ray Program oversees the registration, rules, and regulations of portable x-rays in the state. 

X-ray License in Virginia

The Virginia Board of Medicine, Radiologic Technology oversees licensing for x-ray personnel in the state of Virginia. 

Visit the application wizard for information on how to apply for a license to practice as a Radiologic Technologist, Radiologic Technologist-Limited, or Radiologist Assistant

For all necessary forms, check the applications and forms page.

Registering an X-ray Device

The X-Ray Registration, Inspection, and Certification Program exists to assure quality radiographs with a safe x-ray facility environment for everyone. The program registers about 23,500 radiation-producing devices (such as x-ray machines) each year.

Regulations for Portable X-ray Equipment

The state’s primary statutory authority for a radiation control program is designated the Radiation Control Act and is defined in the Code of Virginia Section 32.1-227 et. al.

  • "Mobile x-ray equipment" means x-ray equipment mounted on a permanent base with wheels or casters for moving while completely assembled.
  • "Portable x-ray equipment" means x-ray equipment designed to be hand-carried.
  • For a portable device, a report of address change is only required for a change in the device's primary place of storage.
  • Portable or mobile radiographic (exclude fluoroscopic) x-ray equipment shall be used only for examinations where it is impractical to transfer the patient to a stationary x-ray installation.
  • Mobile and portable fluoroscopes. In addition to the other requirements of this subsection, mobile and portable fluoroscopes shall provide an image receptor incorporating more than a simple fluorescent screen.
  • Field limitation and alignment for mobile, portable, and stationary general purpose x-ray systems.
  • Mobile and portable x-ray systems other than dental shall be provided with means to limit the source-skin distance to not less than 30 cm.
  • Used continuously for greater than one week in the same location, that is, a room or suite, shall meet the requirements of subdivision 3 a of this subsection;
  • Used for less than one week at the same location shall be provided with either a protective barrier at least two meters (6.5 feet) high for operator protection during exposures, or means shall be provided to allow the operator to be at least 2.7 meters (nine feet) from the tube housing assembly during the exposure.
  • Tube stands for portable x-ray systems. A tube stand or other mechanical support shall be used for portable x-ray systems, so that the x-ray tube housing assembly need not be hand-held during exposures.


Disclaimer: The information in this document is solely for reference material. Regulations change often. To be sure of the most up-to-date laws, contact your local and state agencies.


Additional Resources

Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Health Professions

6603 W. Broad St., 5th Floor

Richmond, VA 23230-1717

(804) 367-4400

Virginia Radiology License

Radiological Health Program

James Madison Building, 7th Floor

109 Governor St., Room 730

Richmond, Virginia 23219

(804) 864-8150

Tags: Portable X-ray Regulations

Chad Hutchison

Written by Chad Hutchison

Founder and CEO of Maven Imaging, Chad Hutchison has been in the medical imaging equipment market since 2003. As his business grew, he pioneered buying and selling medical equipment online and eventually began offering leasing and financing to meet market demands and help customers. His market expertise goes beyond traditional medical imaging and finance support, as he’s spearheading cloud-based lending solutions for vendors across the sector.