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Camtronics takes aim at industry big shots


Camtronics is planning to take on the likes of GE and Siemens in image and data management for cardiac patients with corporate alliances and new products, including an office-based electronic medical record.This EMR product, obtained through a

Camtronics is planning to take on the likes of GE and Siemens in image and data management for cardiac patients with corporate alliances and new products, including an office-based electronic medical record.

This EMR product, obtained through a partnership with privately held CardioWorks, extends Camtronics' reach beyond the inpatient setting, where most cardiology information systems are content to place their focus. The partnership with Chicago-based CardioWorks, announced at the annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology in Orlando, FL, comes on the heels of an announced alliance with Ottawa-based VMI Medical, whose EchoVACS information system includes a clinical database and workflow software tailored for the complex demands of pediatric echocardiography. Pediatric echo is especially challenging in part because the normal values for each cardiac measurement must be adjusted for a child's age. The EchoVACS system is used in nearly half of the U.S. university-affiliated children's heart centers.

Further bolstering its arsenal of products, Camtronics unveiled two new modules for its Vericis information management system, which consolidates data from multiple cardiac imaging modalities and data sources into a single repository. One module, called PhysioLog, adds physiologic monitoring, hemodynamic data recording, and inventory management to Vericis for cardiac cath. Together with the two cath lab modules already available, PhysioLog will give cardiologists a complete view of the catheterization procedure, from waveforms to procedure logs to images, all on one workstation.

The other new module is designed for the nuclear cardiology lab, enabling digital acquisition, review, storage, and distribution of images. Like other Vericis modules, it includes a reporting function that provides automatic transfer of nuclear imaging data into a clinical report. Until now, Vericis was available for echo and angiographic images and data labs only.

These enhancements, when coupled with the partnerships with CardioWorks and VMI, give Vericis a breadth unmatched by other cardiology information systems, according to Thomas E. Kennedy, Ph.D., Camtronics vice president for business development. Even robust systems, which offer access to a wide scope of cardiology images and data from the physician's office or home, draw their data from hospital visits only, he said.

"Our belief is that the digital integrated cardiac record really spans the continuum of patient encounters," Kennedy said. "So if the patient begins in the physician's office, works his or her way through the system, and finally ends up with inpatient studies, we want to be able to track it from the first encounter in the physician's office all the way to the modality."

The CardioWorks EMR is based on ASP technology, an approach that involves maintaining both applications and software in a central, off-site server. When CardioWorks is integrated into Vericis, however, it will likely include the option to use a local Web server, as physicians may be leery of allowing patient data to be housed off-site, Kennedy said.

© 2001 Miller Freeman Inc.
3/28/01, Issue # 1506, page 3.

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