RIS turns workload into workflow
The meat and potatoes of the radiology department - radiology information systems - are on full display at the RSNA this year. Look for tighter PACS and voice recognition integration as well as multiple workflow boosting features to keep the department humming.

Kodak's Health Group (Booth #4312) is launching the newest version of the KODAK CARESTREAM RIS. Features include simplified reporting for "normal" results, graphical notification of workload status for radiologists; ability to dictate and sign reports remotely via web browser; graphic display of patient status; enhanced database searches and new capabilities designed to enhance workflow for mammography exams and reporting. Other new features include scheduling enhancements such as color-coded visual indicators for patient status based on wait times; single-click generation of normal reports, and the ability to interrupt, and then resume, report dictation for instant reading of urgent cases and remote diagnostic dictation and report signing through a web module so that reading radiologists do not need to be located at the main radiology department.

Misys Healthcare Systems (Booth #5108) is exhibiting the newest version of Misys Radiology. The new Misys RIS release is designed to improve patient care and overall time management, workflow and system performance within the diagnostic imaging department. New features include hold queue, which provides a mechanism for having orders reviewed prior to putting these forward as verified orders. Structured reporting encodes structured information using a hierarchical tree of content items that employs DICOM Object Syntax, and PACS integration offering the ability to launch a non-diagnostic web viewer when a qualifying exam is chosen from select points within the RIS. Enhanced medical necessity checking allows the selection of an associated diagnosis for a procedure, searching for a diagnosis code not associated with a procedure, selecting of a diagnosis code not associated with a procedure, defining an Advanced Beneficiary Notification (ABN) form, displaying the ABN form if a diagnosis is selected that is not associated to a procedure printed or faxed, and capturing details of selected diagnosis within exam details (audit trail).

Philips Medical Systems (Booth #1129) is showcasing Philips Xtenity RIS as well as launching a new release of EasyRIS, which is available outside of the U.S. The company is sharing the latest developments in Philips Xtenity RIS and showing EasyRIS with full desktop integration with the Philips PACS and tight integration in the iSite platform.

Swearingen Software, Inc. (Booth  #8327) is demonstrating the fully integrated RMS Billing module, which is currently in the development phase. The new feature is scheduled for release in early 2006. RMS Billing can significantly streamline the billing process, to save time and money, Swearingen says. The RMS Billing component eliminates double-keying and the need for an outside billing agency; an organization can perform all of the needed billing tasks onsite, quickly and efficiently. Other features include full integration with RMS, the ability to print paper HCFA 1500 insurance claims and submit ANSI 837 electronic claims. The electronic claims feature will use PGP encryption for added security.