Evaluating Options for an Enterprise Imaging Strategy

Find out which vendors and features are valued most by radiology organizations when it comes to image exchange.

 The use of an enterprise imaging strategy is a growing trend, and as more organizations look to enter the enterprise arena, the demand for functional and user-friendly tools is at the top of providers’ must-have list.

KLAS, a research firm with an emphasis on healthcare technology, took on the mission of evaluating several image exchange vendors in their latest report Image Exchange 2014: Delivering Added Value in an Enterprise World. The report compiled data and testimonials from 193 providers, representing 166 organizations who employed the image exchange strategy, to find out how they rated their image exchange vendors and what functionality they most coveted.

What’s driving the trend? Consolidation, says Matt Terry, author of the KLAS report. “Organizations, particularly larger organizations, that have an enterprise EMR and they are trying to decide if they want to consolidate and find an imaging vendor that can solve all of [their] problems from A-Z and do that under one vendor.” Another trend, Terry describes, is the idea of looking at each imaging piece separately, and the idea of deconstructing PACS. “They are looking at each piece separately and looking at a best-of-breed approach,” Terry says.[[{"type":"media","view_mode":"media_crop","fid":"26631","attributes":{"alt":"KLAS Image Exchange 2014: Delivering Added Value in an Enterprise World","class":"media-image media-image-right","id":"media_crop_4165769149489","media_crop_h":"0","media_crop_image_style":"-1","media_crop_instance":"2508","media_crop_rotate":"0","media_crop_scale_h":"0","media_crop_scale_w":"0","media_crop_w":"0","media_crop_x":"0","media_crop_y":"0","style":"height: 203px; width: 250px; border-width: 0px; border-style: solid; margin: 1px; float: right;","title":"KLAS Image Exchange 2014: Delivering Added Value in an Enterprise World","typeof":"foaf:Image"}}]]

“The primary problem that hospitals are trying to resolve is, ‘How do we manage this CD upload process and can we centralize the process?’” Terry says.

So how did the vendors fare? DICOM Grid and lifeIMAGE had an overall performance score of 89.9. DR Systems and Nuance (Accelarad) followed behind at 89.1 and 87.1, respectively.

DICOM Grid is lauded for strong functionality; lifeIMAGE stands out for scalability in larger organizations, the report found. DR Systems was noted for image quality and its tight integration with PACS. In addition, customers are optimistic about the future of the Nuance acquisition of Accelarad.

The image exchange marketplace is set to grow, with PACS vendors planning to produce and create image exchange workflow within PACS and RIS, Terry says. With players entering the market, organizations need to decide what their imaging strategy is, and from there, the appropriate features, tools and vendor can be identified, Terry says.

For information on accessing the report, please e-mail brenda.hendrickson@klasresearch.com.

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