PACS on Center Stage
Vendors are rolling out a diverse array of PACS and related essential solutions such as RIS, workflow managers and dashboards at HIMSS ’07. The reality of budget constraints is apparent with more vendors launching ASP (application service provider) solutions. Vendors also are focusing on second- and third-generation buyers and touting their ability to transfer legacy data. Workflow of course remains a hot issue, and new systems are rolling out to streamline workflow and enhance communication with and service to referring physicians. Buyers can expect to see an assortment of standalone RIS and PACS/RIS solutions on the show floor, too. Several vendors are launching new solutions designed to connect and streamline the assortment of technologies and systems that comprise the 21st century digital enterprise. Expect to see tighter integration among various systems. Other essential solutions on the show floor include peripherals like furniture optimized for the digital environment and speech recognition solutions. It should be a great show. See you there.

Agfa HealthCare (Booth #6737) is showcasing its integrated RIS and PACS solution IMPAX Enterprise, a comprehensive and fully integrated digital imaging and information solution. Impax Enterprise balances and connects the needs of individual users with the benefits of a fully integrated healthcare enterprise. It supports clinical needs and business needs; provides productivity and infrastructure management tools for IT departments; streamlines healthcare management and forms the foundation for a hospital's core imaging and IT strategy.
Whether in the office, in the ward or offsite, with IMPAX Enterprise, authorized users have web-enabled access to patient images, past studies, key RIS information, and procedure reports — all from a single desktop. For clinical users, speech recognition and digital dictation tools are one mouse click away.
Impax Enterprise can be deployed in organizations that have large, complex facilities with a desire to lower deployment, system management and administration costs; handle rapid changes in a growing healthcare environment; have image and information needs beyond radiology and throughout the enterprise; control the information overload and provide the right information at the point of care.

AMICAS Vision Series PACS Version 5.0AMICAS (Booth #4010) is showcasing RadStream, Vision Series PACS Version 5.0 and Vision Reach.

RadStream creates a significant increase in radiologist productivity, supports the automation and documentation of results communication and integrates disparate PACS viewers within AMICAS RealTime Worklist.

RadStream is proven to improve radiology report turnaround by 40 percent and reduce interruptions to radiologists by nearly 25 percent. The system prioritizes imaging exams based on a “most likely to interrupt” method. Developed at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, RadStream is fully integrated with the AMICAS RealTime Worklist and complements the new Vision Reach referring physician tool to combine and deliver image management and workflow technology.

Vision Series PACS 5.0 incorporates advancements to support digital mammography, 3D rendering and orthopedic templating, and it includes powerful upgrades to the core infrastructure, including the latest operating system from Microsoft and the latest database and archive technology from IBM. The entire system utilizes the latest in web services from Microsoft and Java.

Vision Reach is focused on helping grow the imaging enterprise by providing unrivalled service to referring physicians. Vision Reach uses web-based technologies to integrate the radiology report with key images to create a single “multi-media” report for referring physicians. The tool includes a sophisticated instant messaging system that uses common e-mail and secure channels to proactively “push” images, reports, and information to any e-mail enabled device.

BRIT Systems (Booth #6019) is showcasing the Roentgen Router DICOM routing module and BRIT Lite CCOW-enabled workstation.

The Roentgen Router provides auto-routing and prefetching of DICOM studies based on a user defined study criteria, with sophisticated tools to schedule routes eliminating human intervention and automating teleradiology environments. With the Roentgen Router, system managers build routes based on information within the DICOM header of radiographic images, including body region, modality type and referring physician. Routes are scheduled based on time of day and day of the week. They can also be queued or held and sent at a later time. Prefetching of comparison studies from any DICOM server or archive is further simplified with the Roentgen Router. A maximum number of prefetches can be established and limited by age of the study, modality or body region. Each route is monitored to facilitate system administration; failure alerts with detailed information can be customized for each site and system manager.  Tools within Roentgen Router support the retrying of failed images based upon a pre-determined time frame, which can also be customized per site. The company is launching the product for use with any vendor’s PACS.

BRIT Lite utilizes the vendor-independent HL7 CCOW (Clinical Context Object Workgroup) standard to facilitate the viewing of medical images and reports within a patient context set by disparate clinical applications at the point of care. BRIT Lite integrates multi-vendor and multi-specialty applications with a single interface, single log-on and sharing of patient context information among different applications associated with the electronic medical record. Users do not need to log onto BRIT’s database and search for their patient images; if the user changes patients within BRIT’s application, it will change this “patient context” back in the original application or other applications accessed from BRIT Lite. When deployed, BRIT Lite creates a more efficient workflow for the clinician by forming a unified view of the patient on one screen.

DR Systems (Booth #1845) is demonstrating new features for Unity RIS/PACS such as a new Patient Link capability, which is designed to help hospitals and imaging centers consolidate patient records, without requiring the customary, time-consuming and expensive creation of an enterprise master patient index (EMPI). It also is showing examples of its capability to migrate significant amounts of data from a legacy PACS to a new DR Systems PACS and presenting how the DR Systems PACS is accessible from electronic medical records (EMR) and health information system (HIS) web portals.

The company is highlighting its data migration expertise. Data migration also is becoming increasingly important as PACS become more common. Studies have shown that up to one-quarter of current PACS users plan to change vendors — a task made challenging by the large size of the radiological image files involved. DR Systems is showing transfer of historical exams from a previously installed PACS onto a newly installed PACS.

Dynamic Imaging (Booth #7117) is showcasing IntegradWeb PACS and RIS and Guardian Diagnostics.

The company is demonstrating the new AutoFetch PACS feature, which speeds local and remote reading workflow for digital mammography interpretation as well as all other modality types. AutoFetch is enabled via IntegradWeb PACS’ Study List, automatically retrieving prioritized unread studies and their relevant priors to the local workstation regardless of location and optimizing performance regardless of the network bandwidth.

These studies are stored to local memory, not the local cache, thus safeguarding the temporary storage of protected health information (PHI).

IntegradWeb PACS Version 3.7 is being developed for scalability to 1 million annual PACS exams and beyond. And IntegradWeb PACS image viewer is being developed to improve on contemporary industry speeds by 50 percent or more. IntegradWeb PACS Version 3.7 is anticipated for early availability in Q2 2007.

Dynamic Imaging is demonstrating other IntegradWeb products including IntegradWeb MAMMO, which provides complete digital mammography interpretation workflow, including customizable reading layouts and sequences for any third-party full-field digital mammography system as well as full support for the functionality of IntegradWeb PACS;  IntegradWeb RIS/PACS integrated, single-desktop RIS/PACS featuring end-to-end web-based workflow from scheduling through billing, with document management and digital dictation to fulfill the complete web-based workflow needs of ambulatory providers regardless of size and complexity.

Dynamic Imaging is discussing its proactive monitoring tool, Guardian Diagnostics. Guardian Diagnostics enables complete remote monitoring of hardware, software and network connectivity. Furthermore, Guardian Diagnostics peers into the actual performance of the IntegradWeb PACS and RIS/PACS software applications, monitoring routine performance criteria such as image acquisition and compression queues, for example, to proactively alert support teams before end users experience any degradation in system performance.

Kodak’s CARESTREAM PACSEastman Kodak (Booth #1611) is unveiling new additions to the KODAK CARESTREAM PACS platform including a global worklist. The global worklist makes imaging exams readily available from all sites and facilitates workflow grid computing. These new capabilities are designed to deliver enhanced information access and storage capabilities for facilities with multiple sites throughout a city or region. Workflow grid computing can increase the availability and redundancy of a multi-site system, for example, and provide efficient management of distributed storage systems and rapid delivery of archived data to any review location. Cost efficiencies can be achieved through the sharing of storage resources, with flexible allocation that can be adjusted to match the changing needs of each facility.

FUJIFILM Medical Systems USA (Booth #5737) is highlighting the recent announcement that it will acquire cardiology PACS vendor Problem Solving Concepts, Inc. (ProSolv) to strengthen its PACS portfolio. 

ProSolv CardioVascular, a FUJIFILM Company, will operate as a wholly owned subsidiary.  Combined with Fujifilm’s worldwide PACS development headquarters in Stamford, Conn., ProSolv’s tools will enable Fujifilm to extend its enterprise information management approach to include cardiology and provide a broader array of integrated technology solutions to a rapidly growing market. Synapse and ProSolv software applications share similar software technology approaches that have already enabled rapid systems integration, providing enhanced access to all clinical imaging data for customers using both products. With this integrated access to imaging data, clinicians are aided in their delivery of outcomes, while improved levels of efficiency and cost savings can be realized in the IT space as a result of economies of scale from a uniform approach to storage and disaster recovery solutions.

GE Healthcare (Booth #441) is showcasing solutions designed to connect clinicians across the continuum of care from imaging solutions for the practice and enterprise settings to integrated clinical and financial solutions that scale from outpatient to inpatient settings. HIMSS highlights include Centricity PACS 3.0, Centricity Imaging AW Suite 2, Centricity Imaging Radiology, Centricity Imaging Application Service Provider (ASP), Centricity Practice Solution and Centricity Business Solution. 

Centricity Imaging PACS features new tools to help hospitals and imaging centers improve efficiency.  For example, new IHE profiles within Centricity PACS version 3.0 will automate exam acquisition, reporting and communication for referring physicians. New customers will benefit from an updated LINUX architecture while current Centricity customers can implement version 3.0 within their existing infrastructure. Other additional features include new decision support tools such as the Business Intelligence Portal, which helps administrators maximize valuable resources; enhanced security features to protect patient information, providing access only to those who truly need it and voice driven commands and highly configurable worklists to manage exams with greater efficiency.

The company is showing Centricity Imaging AW Suite 2 (Advantage Workstation) combined with Centricity Imaging PACS. Centricity AW Suite 2 offers five optional modules such as CardIQ (Cardiology), Advanced Lung Analysis (Oncology), Advanced Vessel Analysis (Cardiovascular), Autobone and CT Colonography. The addition of these modules digitizes the diagnostic process providing unparalleled capabilities to manage large complex sets of patient data. Through advanced visualization and analysis tools, clinicians can manage increasingly sophisticated data available from today’s diagnostic imaging modalities, to speed diagnosis and treatment. Additionally, radiologists no longer have to move between workstations to view and manipulate interactive volumetric data sets. Specific tools for CT, MR, PET/CT, and x-ray are now fully enabled on any networked PACS PC, with the benefits of 3D imaging.

Centricity Radiology brings together Centricity PACS product with the Centricity RIS-IC (formerly known as IDX Imagecast). The combined Centricity Radiology solution allows radiologists and other care providers to manage workflow and leverage a common radiology information system across geographically dispersed locations. Additionally, clinicians have immediate access to significant clinical findings and associated images as well as tools for reducing errors inherent with manual data entry.

Centricity Imaging ASP provides an outsourced and truly scalable DICOM archive solution that enhances, protects and optimizes radiology and cardiology workflow. Customers can take full advantage of Centricity Enterprise Archive and Centricity Web application functionality while improving their cost structure through a pay-per-exam model that allows institutions to match costs to revenues for better-managed cash flow. Finally, changes can be deployed rapidly, alleviating the need to plan for archive upgrades.

Centricity Practice Solution is a single clinical and financial practice management solution aimed at helping to improve practice efficiency and patient care. GE’s Centricity Electronic Medical Record (EMR) enables ambulatory care physicians and clinical staff to document patient encounters, streamline clinical workflow and securely exchange data with other providers, patients and information systems. GE’s Centricity Practice Management solution provides patient and financial management, document management, decision support and connectivity tools that improve business performance and patient service. Certified by the Certification Committee for Health Information Technology (CCHIT) and by the National Consortium for Quality Outcomes (NCQA), Centricity Practice Solution is focused on delivering real-time clinician decision support through nationally accepted, evidence-based clinical guidelines. By providing new tracking, measuring and reporting capabilities practices will be better equipped to measure quality outcomes against national standards and keep up with increasing pay for performance programs.

Centricity Business Solution maximizes business performance for hospitals, integrated delivery networks and large physician organizations. Robust financial and administrative capabilities improve and accelerate the revenue cycle from the first point of patient contact to final payment for services. The results are fewer denials, faster payments and a decreased cost of collections. Automated revenue cycle processes increase efficiency. The integrated solution leverages Centricity EMR but allows sites that with an existing EMR to choose the clinical solution that best fits their needs. Centricity Business Advantage is a fully outsourced revenue cycle management (RCM) service that supports business and administrative functions within healthcare organizations while maximizing revenue cycle efficiencies. The solution, hosted by GE, eliminates large capital requirements, IT staffing infrastructure and long installation times while helping to reduce operating costs and allowing investment in other critical needs.

McKesson Corp. (Booth #1215) is sharing its portfolio of solutions designed to make healthcare safer and more efficient, including Patient Compass and Horizon Clinicals.

Patient Compass solution improves patients’ ability to pay bills by providing 24 x 7 online bill payment access. Patient Compass gives patients the ability to easily understand their financial obligations and the tools to pay their bills. By simplifying the billing experience, providers can increase cash flow, reduce self-pay A/R days and improve patient satisfaction.

Horizon Clinicals is a suite of next-generation, integrated solutions for physicians and other clinicians. It includes the Connecting Physicians offering, which leverages e-prescribing and online physician-patient communication solutions.

Neurostar Solutions (Booth #4206) is featuring its version 6.4 Virtual Radiology Network (VRN) clinical image workflow platform.

The turnkey solution enables conversion to a digital radiology environment. Users can connect to the VRN through the internet to access the full advantages of digital workflow as well as connect with radiologists worldwide to outsource reading or take on new clients to boost income. 

The latest VRN release delivers important new features that include:
  • Online system ordering and setup through Neurostar’s eStore, which is accessible through the Neurostar corporate website
  • Online support and training materials and tools
  • Access to an online community of users with a variety of collaborative tools
  • Access to just-in-time online consults available via Rad Expert Opinion – a novel service that employs Templeton Readings’ extensive network of radiology subspecialty experts
  • Enhanced dynamic routing of studies to the appropriate physicians as needed based on resource allocation and optimization

NovaRad’s NovaPACS 6.5NovaRad Corp. (Booth #1262) is releasing NovaPACS 6.5 and NovaRIS 6.5 at HIMSS.

New NovaPACS 6.5 features include an additional administration console tool to enable better sorting, reporting and information gathering and viewing. For the referring physician, the “Referring Physician Specialist Viewer” provides the complete set of tools available on the PACS workstations. The latest version also provides NovaRad with the ability to monitor the NovaPACS installation in real time to help further enhance its support capabilities. Also offered is an option for a cost-effective CD/DVD publisher/printer. In addition stat reads, and the ability for the PACS to support multiple site codes was also enhanced.

To complement NovaPACS 6.5, NovaRad offers NovaRIS 6.5, a Health Level Seven (HL7) and HIPAA-compliant RIS developed using the same database as NovaPACS to ensure seamless integration. As standard practice, installation, hardware, maintenance and training are included in one price, on one contract.

Philips Medical Systems (Booth #6137) is demonstrating iSite PACS versions 3.5 and 4.0, iSite Advanced Visualization, Xcelera Cardiovascular Information Solution, ViewForum workstation and iSite upgrades. The company is highlighting its ability to support clinical staff to optimize patient care by providing clinical information any time, any place.

iSite PACS employs an enterprise approach to enable enterprise-wide  access to diagnostic-quality images and relevant information and extend the power of radiology to all caregivers in the enterprise.

iSite Advanced Visualization brings interactive advanced visualization tools to all caregivers. It enables faster, easier and more confident diagnosis and review of image data. By means of iSyntax integration these tools offer transparent enterprise wide access to slab MPR, MIP and advanced Volume Visualization for improved results sharing and decision making. The Philips solution allows all users to navigate through large and volumetric datasets, without having to download the full dataset first or having a dedicated server infrastructure to provide the reconstructed views to the client.

Xcelera Cardiovascular Information Solution is an integrated solution that unites information from all cardiology imaging modalities such as interventional cardiology, cardiovascular ultrasound, cardiac CT, cardiac MR, nuclear cardiology and electrophysiology. It combines advanced clinical analysis tools giving 2D and 3D analysis of echo images and processing Cardiac CT and MRI images. Xcelera enables the standardization of cardiovascular workflow and management for efficient and high quality patient care by enabling image management, viewing, quantitative analysis and reporting, all using the same advanced clinical applications and tools as Philips imaging equipment. 

ViewForum clinical workspace offers true multi-modality and multi-vendor viewing and clinical applications, enabling faster, easier and more confident diagnosis and review of image data.

iSite upgrades include a new core IHE-compliant database, HL7 workflow engine, back-end system architecture harmonized with Philips user interface design standards, and a localization framework that provides internationalization support. This include interfaced support for the cardiology care cycle within the Xcelera Cardiovascular Information Solution and interfaced solutions for the orthopedic care cycle, within the operating theater, for surgery, with orthopedic applications on ViewForum and on iSite. 

ScImage PicomEnterprise 3.0ScImage (Booth #5411) is featuring PicomEnterprise Version 3.0.

The unified multi-department workflow system enables exams from multiple departments to be scheduled, tracked, reported, archived and distributed via a single web-based logon by employing a single database to organize varied data from each of these departments. At its core, PicomEnterprise boasts one database and a shared infrastructure that simplifies workflow for multiple departments. The solution features several clinical applications for radiology, cardiology, nuclear medicine and orthopedics. 

Siemens Medical Solutions (Booth #4037) is showcasing Soarian workflow management solution and syngo Suite and highlighting partnerships with SAP and NextGen Healthcare.

Soarian helps organizations synchronize workflow across the entire enterprise to help drive and direct workflow processes to reduce handoffs and promote standardization for more measurable and predictable outcomes. Its smart user interface responds to the needs and work processes of individual users with the right data delivered to the right user at the right time. With its workflow functionality, Soarian supports the goal of achieving a process-oriented, patient-centric approach to healthcare — across departments and care settings — to effect sustainable change.

syngo integrates the complete imaging management workflow in a unified work environment. It helps increase the efficiency of diagnostic and therapeutic cycles, providing fast, intuitive, and role-based access to information. syngo seamlessly connects with the clinical and administrative cycles addressed by Soarian solutions.

Siemens’ partnership with SAP brings workflow management expertise, deep IT domain experience and committed customer service to bear to help healthcare organizations attain productivity improvements as well as a lower total cost of technology ownership. The partnership with NextGen Healthcare unites Siemens’ expertise in enterprise healthcare IT solutions and advanced medical imaging technologies for the acute and specialty environments with NextGen’s industry leadership in ambulatory EMR and practice management software.

IT Peripherals
AFC Industries (Booth #3819) is debuting at HIMSS 2007 its adjustable, mobile Point-of-Care Cart with convenient, easily accessible drawers and an innovative space-saving profile.  Designed to hold laptop computers, CPUs and small instruments, the ergonomic Cart is ideal to bring the latest digital technology into the examination and operating rooms and to the patient bedside. 

The Point-of-Care Cart features a work surface that adjusts from 28-1/2 to 39 inches in height to accommodate both seated and standing work positions and retractable keyboard and mouse trays to facilitate easy movement in small spaces.  It also is available in a dual work surface configuration, which offers independent movement of both surfaces for the ultimate in flexibility.  From VESA flat-panel monitor mounts to CPU holders and wire baskets, the unit may be customized to meet a site’s exact needs and the preferences of multiple users. New storage units are available in a range of configurations, including one-and six-drawer units.

The Point-of-Care Cart features a small 21 x 24 inch footprint and large casters for easy mobility and is constructed of sturdy rolled steel.

Compressus (Booth #7423) is showcasing MEDxConnect Enterprise Systems Integration software.

MEDxConnect technology provides seamless connectivity and interoperability between diagnostic acquisition devices, PACS, HIS, RIS, and related information systems. Key components of MEDxConnect Enterprise Integration solution include: the Medical Message Mediator (M3), the Systems Management Dashboard and the Virtual Worklist.

M3  supports HL7, DICOM and other standard messages and uses the communications protocols and semantics of each participating information system to control the flow of images, reports, messages, standard patient demographics and other important data for diagnosis and treatment planning of a patient between otherwise independent and disparate systems. The greatest source of interoperability problems is associated with the fact that different systems use proprietary data structures to store and move information. The M3 maps the data elements and bridges isolated islands of data and mediates interoperability between the different applications, creating a virtual integrated information system that adheres to the IHE technical framework. This information can then be reliably used to manage pre-fetching rules, study distribution and report creation and delivery. The M3 uses DICOM, HL7, XML, SSL, TLS and other standards to ensure HIPAA compliance in both procedural and security areas.

Systems Management Dashboard (SMD) locates workflow inefficiencies and bottlenecks to provide the needed overview in monitoring enterprise activities to ensure smooth and efficient workflow. Using a variety of numeric and graphic tools to display workflow operations, the SMD enables users to quickly find and correct inefficiencies to streamline the healthcare enterprise. It pinpoints enterprise bottlenecks by indicating in red the services which are outside the customer specified boundaries.

Virtual Worklist runs on the MEDxConnect M3 server and leverages the M3 capabilities. Jointly, the Virtual Worklist and M3 enable users to build a complete and flexible system to efficiently manage diagnostic and reporting radiological services. Using information from the SMD permits Virtual Worklist users to achieve load balancing throughout the enterprise. This is accomplished through the ability to retrieve and store diagnostic images on DICOM archives, the ability to manage their activities via a patient work list generated from multiple PACS and network systems and the ability to route images to participating physicians based upon any combination of modality, body part and/or referring physician through rules created by the customer. Finally, to maximize productivity and reduce spikes in workload, physicians have the ability to access patient worklists throughout the network. This creates one seamless integrated enterprise diagnostic network to increase efficiency and save time and money. It provides the customer the freedom to choose the HIS/RIS/PACS systems on feature preference rather than to avoid integration issues. The result is a single enterprise-wide diagnostic solution from many disparate parts. 

Crescendo Systems Corporation (Booth #5121) is showcasing MD Center-XL, a dictation and speech recognition application that allows the use of back-end and front-end speech recognition on one single license. MD Center-XL enables healthcare facilities to leave their document creation options open. Physicians can switch between the two modes without having to exit the dictation application and log on again. In the front-end mode, voice commands give physicians hands-free control over the application. If they have to interrupt the correction process, they can save ongoing work for later completion or simply decide to send the report to transcription. In the back-end mode, the process is entirely transparent to authors, who may not even be aware that speech recognition technology is being used. Once the physician has finished dictating, recognized text is produced in the background and sent to the transcriptionist for correction. Once a job has been sent off to transcription, it is still possible to edit it using voice commands. Automatic template fill-in further accelerates medical documentation: when a doctor creates a dictation, the system creates the database record, recalls the template, populates the demographics and displays information on the screen in less than a second; the database record is then populated accordingly. Like all Crescendo products, MD Center-XL supports the Citrix Presentation Server 3.0 and later versions as well as thin-client terminals such as Wyse Windows Terminals.

Eizo Nanao Technologies (Booth #6021) is showcasing its RadiForce series, the 30-inch RadiForce RS410. The screen size and native resolution of 4 megapixels (2560 x 1600) for a 16:10 widescreen format give this monitor the same amount of screen size and number of pixels as two 2 MP monitors in portrait mode but without the obtrusive bezels. This simplifies comparing images or allows for showing more information û for example 12 CT slices with an information volume of 512 x 512 pixels each.

EIZO’s Digital Uniformity Equalizer (DUE) function offers stable, consistent brightness from corner to corner ensures that the image will look the same regardless of where it is shown on the screen.

A dual link input function achieves a clock frequency of 60 Hz. This enables frame synchronization between the computer and the monitor, which reproduces a smooth moving picture without any dropping of frames. This is particularly important to achieve uninterrupted 3D image rendering. A picture-by-picture function splits the screen into two sides of 2 MP each and displays output from two separate PCs.

A CAL Switch function with various calibration modes for different modalities such as CR, CT, and endoscopy is included. Also, ScreenManager Pro for Medical includes additional functions such as Independent Image Setting (IIS) and backlight saver. IIS allows for any specific area of an image to be adjusted and pre-set to various grayscale gradations and luminance levels. The backlight saver function turns the monitor’s secondary power off when a screensaver is activated and then turns it back on again when the screen comes out of screensaver mode.

Finally, the RS410 is compatible with the company’s Clip-On Swing Sensor G1 for precise remote calibration and image consistency operations. And to ensure high performance and smooth 3D rendering on the RadiForce RS410, EIZO offers the ATI FireGL V7350. This PCI-Express graphics board has a frame buffer memory of one gigabyte and has dual DVI-D output terminals.

EnovateIT (Booth #2959) is demonstrating its new push button, ergonomically adjustable wall mounted workstation series. The new Wall Mounted Workstation addresses the three major concerns of clinicians. Patient confidentiality is maintained by the automatic LCD monitor shut-off when the keyboard tray is closed. Proper ergonomics are achieved by 12 inches of height adjustability with the push of a button. The glass monitor enclosure, coupled with medical grade keyboard and mouse, provides an infection control environment. The workstation’s furniture design comes in a variety of wood grain and laminate colors that meet hospital design criteria. Additional features include secure computer mounting that helps deter theft, as well as an optional auto-retracting keyboard shelf.

ETIAM (Booth #1556) is releasing a new version of its worklist broker, WillB — which is a smart agent that interfaces imaging modalities with information systems. WillB efficiently automates the workflow of healthcare organizations by eliminating repetitive data entry, streamlining scheduling of patient examinations and linking images with reports and medical records. It makes the patient identifiers transferred by information systems available to the imaging network through the DICOM Worklist service and handles patient ID corrections and patient merges in compliance with IHE profiles.

The new version of WillB enables operators to create a study order and a patient encounter including the identifiers when a message has not been received from the information system. Then, it is possible to forward this information to the information system and to another destination (e.g. PACS) for notification purposes. Modalities that do not support the DICOM Worklist service are integrated into the workflow through a mechanism that generates barcodes automatically. These new features make it possible to ensure a seamless workflow when:
  • information systems (HIS, RIS) do not handle some types of transactions,
  • the transaction messages have not reached the broker,
  • there is no information system upstream at all.

NEC Unified (Booth # 369, 7547) — sister company of NEC Display Solutions of American — is demonstrating some of NEC’s display products the MD series and large screen models. The MD series includes medically certified 21.3 inch grayscale 2 MegaPixel and 3 MP displays that feature the X-Light backlight system, which allows for consistent brightness and white point levels over a long period of time and provides the basis for excellent diagnostic quality.

RIS Concepts, Inc. (Booth #4000) is showing the RAD-RIS web-based radiology group workflow application fine-tuned for the unique needs of radiology groups reading studies for multiple client facilities. 

RAD-RIS creates an integrated worklist combining studies across multiple enterprises and locations, while simultaneously interfacing PACS solutions in use at different hospital and clinics. It also features a component for billing clients on a “per-exam” basis, providing radiology groups with a complete business solution.

Other features further streamline workflow. A Client Facility portal enables a radiology group’s contracted facilities to manage their own exam workflow using the radiology group’s RIS. Advanced Radiology Group Routing Rules enabling assignment of exams to individual radiologists and radiology sub-specialists by facility, referring physician and modality. A Client Contract Management feature designed for radiology groups bills client facilities for services. Radiologist Activity Reports track the ongoing reading activities of radiologists for use in workload balancing and radiologist payout calculations. Report Distribution is available through fax and email to both the ordering imaging facility and referring physician.  Reports also can be printed directly from the system by all users. A Referring Physician Portal enables group clients to manage their own referring clinicians and allow access to the radiology group system itself as an imaging center referral user. Exam Report Fax-on-the-Fly allows client facilities to fax reports from the RAD-RIS when needed.

Swearingen Software (Booth #511) is launching Radiologist Task Center that integrates a one-stop radiologist dashboard into RISynergy. This new Task Center provides a single screen where radiologists may perform all of their tasks, such as viewing the procedures they are required to perform for any given day, viewing the schedule of all procedures and visits for the day; viewing, editing, and signing off transcribed reports; viewing a list of completed exams waiting to be read; syncing auxiliary systems, such as a PACS and/or dictation system on the displayed patient’s record and accessing patient visit history, current visit detail record or schedule detail record and all previous transcribed reports for any given patients.

PACS Training
RSTI (Radiological Service Training Institute) (Booth #2580) is announcing its latest training program for the PACS industry, the PACS Engineer and Administrator Certification Series. Two 2-week classes carry users through a series of rigorous testing towards certification as a RSTI-PACS Master. Those certified will possess a complete skill set to administer or trouble-shoot any PACS system in the industry.

SG&A Consulting (Booth #2727) and its School of PACS Administration is showcasing its PACS, EMR, and other healthcare informatics consulting services and educational resources including contracting formats for those deploying PACS and EMRs. SG&A’s One Day Assessment and Total Support Program are low risk investments that can help validate an organization’s current health informatics strategy —  at any phase of the project plan. The Total Support program allows a healthcare organization to utilize SG&A Consulting as a supplemental resource for the in-house project team; a mix of on-site and off-site services can be contracted for a pre-determined amount per month. These services include, deployment, project management, vendor discussions on behalf of the client, workflow analysis, policy and procedure development or review, contract negotiations and procurement issues, DICOM conformance statement review, and generation of acceptance testing criteria. The Total Support Program allows an organization to access objective, third party expertise in a low risk, contracting format.

SG&A’s industry-recognized School of PACS Administration is also highlighting other topics related to the influence of increasing emphasis on healthcare informatics certifications on the School’s curriculum development efforts will be presented.