“Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated,” quipped Mark Twain after learning that his obituary had been published in a British newspaper. While the commoditization of the RIS/PACS market does not spell death, it does spell change.
On one hand, diagnostic imaging centers, physician practices and hospitals are fueling the market in several avenues. And on the other, key players in the market do seem to be staying at least one pace ahead by differentiating products and services to meet the needs of the evolving market.
On the buyers’ side, interest in vendor neutral archives is on the rise. Health IT leaders, including those identified in Health Imaging & IT’s annual Top Connected awards, are planning for and implementing archives to consolidate various PACS within and beyond the enterprise. At the same time, niche digital image management systems continue to make their mark to meet the unique needs of specialties such as orthopedic surgeons, mammographers and cardiologists.
One can argue the semantics of commoditization; however, the RIS/PACS market is alive and well. In fact, numerous players continue to report profits and new installs.
My crystal ball may be a bit cloudy, but I am certain of a few things. We will see the market continue to evolve, and players in good health—those that offer sound technologies that effectively meet market needs and provide high-quality customer service—will survive.
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Lisa Fratt, Editor