PACsPlus+ merges images with patient recordsDynamic Healthcare Technologies has wasted little time in integratingtechnology acquired through its purchase of PACS and radiologyinformation system firm Dimensional Medicine earlier this year.The
Dynamic Healthcare Technologies has wasted little time in integratingtechnology acquired through its purchase of PACS and radiologyinformation system firm Dimensional Medicine earlier this year.The Maitland, FL, company has set a December date for the debutof its PACsPlus+ product line, which represents an ambitious effortto integrate digital image management with an enterprise-widesystem for providing electronic patient records.
Dynamic Health acquired DMI in May by paying $550,000 and assuming$2.5 million in debt and other liabilities owed by DMI (SCAN 5/22/96).DMI marketed the Maxifile RIS and Maxiview image management product,which DHT said it would integrate with its own DynamicVision electronichealth record.
DHT has completed the integration work and is now preparingto release a line of new products for information and image managementthat can be scaled according to the needs of hospitals, said NickBhatt, senior vice president and chief technical officer.
In the entry-level implementation of PACsPlus+, DHT can offera store-and-forward teleradiology workstation that provides alow-cost way to send medical images between radiology departmentsand other hospital departments, as well as to satellite clinics.
The next level of PACsPlus+ implementation is a radiology department-levelPACS solution that builds on Maxiview, Bhatt said. To developthe product, DHT ported Maxiview's image management software toa Windows platform in a client/server architecture, with a WindowsNT image server, Windows 95 client workstations, and MicrosoftSQL database. The system complies with the DICOM 3.0 standardand can be interfaced to DHT's Maxifile RIS, with hooks for interfacingwith RIS products from other companies.
Rather than requiring a hospital to acquire new computer hardwareto run its PACS software, DHT will try to build PACsPlus+ on hardwarealready in place, according to Bhatt.
DHT provides several archiving options. Hospitals can chooseto continue to use film for long-term archiving, with severalweeks of studies available on a magneto-optical disk short-termarchive. Or, PACsPlus+ installations can choose an all-digitalarchive consisting of M/O disks and magnetic tape.
PACsPlus+ also supports soft-copy diagnosis, with 2k x 2.5kImage Systems monitors with Dome Imaging Systems controller cards.
The most advanced implementation of PACsPlus+ is what setsDHT apart from the PACS pack, however. DHT has developed connectionsbetween the system and the company's own electronic health-recordsystem. Radiologists using PACsPlus+ can save referral-qualityimages from a study into DynamicVision patient reports that aresent to referring physicians across the network. Referring physiciansand radiologists can then consult electronically on the report.
"Once a radiologist prepares a report, and takes imagesthat are reference quality, that forms a document that is sentto physicians," Bhatt said. "That's how we tie our radiologyimaging solution and RIS with the rest of the hospital."
DHT is also developing an option to allow radiologists andphysicians to consult on the reports using videoconferencing,according to Bhatt.
DHT will display PACsPlus+ at the Radiological Society of NorthAmerica meeting in December, with shipments starting Dec. 1. Thevendor will sell the product through both direct and indirectchannels, and expects to find many leads by plumbing its installedbase of customers who are using its other clinical informationsystems products. DHT is also amenable to licensing PACsPlus+,Bhatt said.
The initial implementation of PACsPlus+ is at The Children'sMercy Hospital in Kansas City, MO, which has been using the systemfor about a month.