Emageon, Dell team up to create small-hospital PACS

June 7, 2007

Hospitals with fewer than 200 beds increasingly are taking the plunge into CR and DR, while upgrading obsolete CTs with multislice scanners. Their rising load of digital data requires a PACS, but costs have been a problem. On June 7, at the Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine meeting, PACS/IT vendor Emageon and personal computer maker Dell proposed a solution: a simplified PACS based on Emageon’s advanced PACS and prepackaged to run on Dell computers.

Hospitals with fewer than 200 beds increasingly are taking the plunge into CR and DR, while upgrading obsolete CTs with multislice scanners. Their rising load of digital data requires a PACS, but costs have been a problem. On June 7, at the Society for Imaging Informatics in Medicine meeting, PACS/IT vendor Emageon and personal computer maker Dell proposed a solution: a simplified PACS based on Emageon's advanced PACS and prepackaged to run on Dell computers.

In a press conference held during the SIIM meeting, Emageon CEO, president, and board chairman Chuck Jett said the new product, which will begin shipping the third quarter of 2007, could meet the needs of some 3600 facilities in the U.S. The RadSuite Express will have the same clinical functionality as PACS installed at large hospitals but will be equipped with only the computing power to handle annual procedure volumes between 20,000 and 80,000. It will lack the options that require hundreds or thousands of staff hours to configure and add to the price of a system.

"We believe this will enable small hospitals across the country to take advantage of the same tool sets as leading hospitals like Johns Hopkins," Jett said.

The system will be manufactured, delivered, installed, and supported by Dell. Each product will be tested before leaving the factory by the same people who will install it, said Scott Jenkins, Ph.D., director of healthcare solution sales at Dell.

Dell and Emageon will work together in the marketing of RadSuite Express. Buyers will order the product on Dell's website, where it is scheduled to go live in mid-July.

Options relating to computing power will be available, as buyers pick the memory and computing speed appropriate for their needs.

Customers will also have plenty of choice when it comes to paying for the system. They may choose an application service provider per-study payment plan, capital purchase, a combination of the two that includes buying some PACS equipment and possibly adding RIS and contracting for offsite data storage, or financing of an equipment purchase arranged or handled through Dell and Emageon.