Preview: IT shines light to cost savings

November 16, 2010

The need for increased efficiency will continue to ripple across radiology, as it has since the start of the great recession, leading the community to seek better and lower cost ways to manage patients. This year, as in years past, this need will be satisfied in large part by offerings in information technology.

The need for increased efficiency will continue to ripple across radiology, as it has since the start of the great recession, leading the community to seek better and lower cost ways to manage patients. This year, as in years past, this need will be satisfied in large part by offerings in information technology.

Advances in information technology will bring images from PACS to consumer-driven handhelds. Carestream will show as a work-in-progress a zero-footprint, web-based portal that will allow remote users to view images and patient data on Windows- and Macintosh-based computers, as well as mobile devices, such as iPads. The portal is designed to link with hospital information and electronic medical records systems. It will connect with Carestream’s vendor-neutral Clinical Data Archive and be integrated with Carestream SuperPACS Architecture to enable zero-footprint image access by clinicians and referring physicians.

GE’s Centricity PACS will arrive in Chicago with version 3.2, offering integration with Centricity Enterprise Archive 4.0 as well as a range of as-yet-undisclosed features the company says will reflect customer wants and needs. Optionally, Centricity PACS 3.2 will include support for the company’s web-based diagnostic viewer, Centricity PACS Web Diagnostic (Web DX 2.0) with embedded MIP/MPR. The latest version will also allow configuration with the AW Server, 3D advanced clinical applications for areas such as cardiology and oncology, and server virtualization using VMware.

Merge will emphasize its vendor-neutral archiving platform, Merge ECM, and its Clinician Access Portal for zero-client distribution of images and reports to any browser-enabled device, including the iPad and iPhone. Merge ECM is designed to integrate clinical specialty imaging. The company will also spotlight its Merge iConnect for sharing images among healthcare providers and integrating medical imaging into broader HIT applications.

Syngo.via, which is pending FDA clearance, and syngo.plaza PACS will take point for information technology offerings by Siemens. Siemens’ syngo.via software supports multimodality reading of clinical cases, using automated case preparation and structured case navigation to cut through inefficiencies across multiple specialties, including cardiology, oncology, and neurology, according to the company. The software, which is designed to integrate with existing PACS and RIS of all major vendors, allows access to state-of-the-art advanced visualization tools. Siemens’ PACS, syngo.plaza, offers users a preconfigured intuitive interface and a customizable viewing mode that allows users to define and use layouts they choose.