Agfa HealthCare, Free University of Brussels ink research deal

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Agfa HealthCare and the Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel hospital, linked to the Vrije Universiteit Brussel university (Free University of Brussels), have signed a long-term agreement to advance hospital IT and diagnostic imaging systems. The agreement covers core projects designed to improve clinical IT workflow such as supporting patient scheduling, reporting, medical documentation, image management, and advanced decision support. The companies will also collaborate on new clinical imaging applications, with a view to improved disease management.
 
Agfa HealthCare and the university hospital have set up a professorial chair to help advance research related to healthcare informatics and medical image processing.
 
"This level of cooperation is key to the future of healthcare, which requires collaboration between academic and industrial partners, bringing the best of both worlds together for the benefit of patients worldwide," said Philippe Houssiau, president of Agfa HealthCare. "Our agreement with the Vrije Universiteit Brussel university will allow us to actively continue our pursuit of evidence- based solutions and innovations to meet the ever growing needs of our customers in the near future".
 
Recent research supported by Agfa Healthcare has revealed that European hospitals are increasingly investing in IT infrastructure to improve their overall efficiency, with over 42 percent of hospitals surveyed currently spending between 2 and 5 percent of their annual operating budget on IT solutions. Seventy-five percent of all hospitals surveyed indicate that IT solutions are already a key strategic requirement for them in the short term.
 
"The research programs which we have agreed to undertake today will help ensure that academics and industrial partners are continuously innovating, for the benefit of clinicians and their patients worldwide," said Marc Noppen, PhD, a professor and managing director at the Universitair Ziekenhuis Brussel hospital, "Together with Agfa HealthCare we will strive for ever evolving and improving healthcare solutions, delivering next generation applications for tomorrow's hospital environments."