Centralized and easy troubleshooting are the themes for monitors at HIMSS this year.

Check out new software that lives in a PDA and exports into a variety of management software programs. Centralized QA software also takes the edge off managing a host of displays.

Barco (booth #6245) is showing at HIMSS 2005 version 2.05 of its hospital-wide image quality management software, MediCal Administrator. The newest version of Barco's software supports personal digital assistant (PDA) devices. Barco said system administrators are now able to access all medical display systems via PDA and control proactive checkups from any remote location. As a result, QA interventions can be performed at all times without disturbing radiology activities. Also, the new MediCal Administrator allows Pocket PC users to view information about each display system and the QA tasks performed, along with a status overview of all displays in the medical facility.

MediCal Administrator's improved reporting capabilities allow QA administrators to export all their QA data reports to familiar formats, such as Excel and PDF. This allows IT professionals to edit their QA reports more easily and to exchange QA status information among the radiology department.

In addition, MediCal Administrator has been extended with notification functionality via SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) so that technicians can now automatically be notified via SNMP whenever one of the display systems performs below standard.

Planar (booth #2047) is highlighting a new display management console and affordable medical monitors for clinical settings.

The Dome Dashboard is a new software console application for centralized display calibration. The QA tool enables PACS administrators and IT managers to centrally manage, control and report on their entire line of Dome medical imaging displays.

The Dome Dashboard works in conjunction with Dome CXtra calibration software, which is included with all Dome medical-imaging display systems (Dome CX, QX and PX lines, as well as the Dome Surgery Review Cart).

With Planar's Dome Dashboard, alerts can be set up to immediately page the PACS administrator when a display changes in any unexpected way, whether the display shuts down, it is out of DICOM conformance, or when a scheduled maintenance interval passes. The Dome Dashboard also allows administrators to view display parameters which CXtra manages - including brightness, DICOM performance results and other display characteristics - from one centralized location.

In addition, Planar is emphasizing its new Dome P1 and P2 bundles that are ideal for displays needed in clinical settings, such as nursing stations and physicians offices. The PX bundles include a complete DICOM-calibrated display set of two monitors, graphics card, driver, integrated software and all cables. The bundles are supported by Dome CXtra desktop edition software.