Creating the Global Imaging Record

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Sponsored by an educational grant from GE Healthcare and HP

 
  GE Centricity OneView provides radiologists with patient exam records.
   

Workflow governs radiology. Despite all of the advantages of digital image management, inefficiencies remain. A lack of interoperability between disparate systems, for example, creates information islands and impedes workflow and affects patient care. The problems are exacerbated at large healthcare networks that typically operate multiple RIS, PACS and reporting systems.

“In the conventional, large-scale enterprise PACS environment, the healthcare system may house multiple discrete RIS and PACS,” says Tanner Trombly, product manager at GE Healthcare. “Each facility may use a different patient identifier, so there is no consolidated patient record across the organization. PACS A (and radiologists reading from it) is unaware of images housed on PACS B. What’s more, radiologists can not readily access historical images acquired at a different facility. Instead, the radiologist must complete complex queries to seek patient information and prior images, which impedes workflow and decelerates patient care.” Information systems, and the physicians who depend on the systems to provide patient care, are better served by a universal patient identification mechanism.

GE Healthcare Centricity OneView provides a solution. The web-based clinical information management and workflow management system bridges the gap between disparate systems by providing a workflow middleware tool. It is a single point of entry to imaging and information for radiologists, technologists and clinicians. OneView provides a global view of the entire enterprise, enabling radiologists to quickly mine a patient’s history for essential imaging data.

“Centricity OneView provides radiologists with a comprehensive global view of the patient imaging record,” continues Trombly, “and, if necessary, facilitates access to historical images.” For example, if a patient undergoes a brain CT at one facility and is later treated at a second enterprise site after a car accident, Centricity OneView checks the patient’s record across the entire healthcare system. When it detects prior studies, it merges the patient record and can move the historical images to the target PACS. The process is simple and does not require multiple workflow-busting steps. What’s more, the system improves patient care. The radiologist can compare current and historical images and help the clinician make a more informed treatment decision. The system is cost-effective, integrating with many RIS or PACS and allowing sites to maximize their imaging informatics investments as they grow. Furthermore, OneView manages the complexity of reporting in a multi-system environment by providing desktop integration with the report creation vendor and assuring that the finalized diagnostic report is routed correctly to the originating RIS.

On the day-to-day level, Centricity OneView interacts with RIS and PACS at distinct sites and creates a common patient view. The system receives HL7 messages about scheduled exams and checks them against images in each PACS archive. OneView cross references the images and exams to create a global record.

The system also can benefit smaller organizations with limited interoperability between the RIS and PACS by better connecting the disconnected systems and providing a single patient view.

“Enterprise image management is complex,” points out Michael Mast, senior marketing manager at GE Healthcare. “Interoperability remains a challenge for all radiology providers. The issues are magnified at large, multi-site organizations and those with poor interoperability between the RIS and PACS. Centricity OneView provides a cost-effective link among disparate systems, agnostically communicating with all RIS and PACS to create a global patient imaging record easily accessed by radiologists and other care providers.”