KLAS: Providers searching for partners in breast cancer detection

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Healthcare providers are looking for partners in breast imaging in order to navigate its confusing landscape, according to the newly released KLAS report, Breast Imaging 2014: Finding a Partner for the Future.

Included in the report are findings from 183 providers who offered up their picks for mammography vendors if given the chance to make a decision now. The vendors included FUJIFILM, GE Healthcare, Hologic, MagView, MRS, PenRad and Siemens.

“There were a few recurring themes we heard from providers during our research: partnerships, tomosynthesis and breast ultrasound,” said Monique Rasband, report author, in a press release. “Providers who have adopted tomosynthesis reported overwhelmingly positive feedback, and those who have not are looking forward to FDA approval for other vendors in the future. Additionally, more providers are looking at automated whole breast ultrasound, and breast applications for general ultrasound are getting stronger,” explained Rasband.

When asked which digital mammography vendor was their top choice, 63 percent of GE customers were unfaithful, citing Hologic as their first pick. Although many selected Hologic because of tomosynthesis—it is the only U.S. approved vendor for the technology—others said it is the best breast imaging partner.

Moreover, Hologic customers are loyal, with 100 percent reporting they would choose the vendor again. While Siemens has not yet released tomosynthesis to its U.S. customers, they are willing to wait for FDA approval. Of their customers, 81 percent selected the vendor as their top choice. The other 19 percent said they would choose Hologic, mainly because of tomosynthesis.

GE customers reported they are happy with their 2D technology, but feedback regarding customer relationships was mixed. Of GE customers, 37 percent would select the vendor as their top choice and 63 percent would choose Hologic. FUJIFILM customers responded similarly, with 33 percent picking FUJIFILM and the remaining 67 percent selecting Hologic.

Although the market trend is shifting toward consolidation, results indicated that providers are likely to stay with their niche mammography information system (MIS) vendors. Providers said MRS and PenRad provide better overall mammography functionality than radiology information system (RIS) vendors. Provider responses indicated that MagView’s functionality development is static and their service is eclipsed by other MIS vendors.

Few providers rated the Epic RIS’s mammography functionality, but it seems to perform well in comparison with other RIS programs. Providers who use the mammography functionality from GE, Cerner and MEDITECH reported that their needs are not being met. Siemens and McKesson were only given four ratings and though Siemens fared well, McKesson customers were unhappy.

The report is available to healthcare professionals and clinicians at www.KLASresearch.com/reports.